St Michael’s Church (Llanfihangel Dinsylwy)

St Michael's Church

St Michael’s Church (Llanfihangel Dinsylwy)

Date

10 July 2015

Location

Tan-Dinas, Llanddona, Anglesey
SH 58807 81487; 53.31142°N, 4.12071°W

Information

St Michael’s is a former parish church dating back to the 15th century built on the remote site of an earlier church. It is known in Welsh as Llanfihangel Dinsylwy (Mihangel is Welsh for Michael) and is situated below Din Sylwy, a 164 m high, flat-topped limestone hill near Llanddona that is also known as Bwrdd Arthur (Arthur’s Table). Din Sylwy is the location of a hill fort thought to have been created in the Iron Age and re-occupied in Roman times. The church is of a simple two-part plan, consisting of a nave and narrower chancel. It is a Grade II* listed building owned by the Church in Wales and is part of the parish of Beaumaris.

Further Reading

St Michael’s Church (Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales);
Church of St Michael, Llanddona (British Listed Buildings)

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Llanddona Transmitting Station

Llanddona Transmitting Station

Llanddona Transmitting Station

Date

10 July 2015

Location

Llanddona, Anglesey
SH 58338 81392; 53.31044°N, 4.12770°W

Information

The transmitting station at Llanddona was built by the BBC in 1958 and is now owned by telecommunications infrastructure company Arqiva, which operates all the TV and most of the radio transmitters in the UK. Llanddona’s television transmitter switched over from analogue to digital in 2009. Its mast is 107 m tall and it covers most of Anglesey and large parts of the North Wales coast.

Further Reading

Llanddona (The Big Tower)

Llanidan House Garden

Llanidan House

Llanidan House

Date

4 July 2015

Location

Llanidan, Brynsiencyn, Anglesey
SH 49436 66890; 53.17773°N, 4.25435°W

Information

The walled garden of Llanidan House (also known as Llanidan Hall or Plas Llanidan) is open to the public three times a year under the National Garden Scheme. The garden and grounds date back to the development of the property in the 17th century, although the original layout was lost when the garden was ploughed over after the Second World War. It was restored from being completely overgrown in the 1980s.

The estate was the location of a monastery in the 14th century and was purchased from the crown in 1606 by Beaumaris MP Richard ap Rhydderch (Richard Prytherch). When Prytherch’s great-great-grandson Thomas Lloyd died in 1740 the estate was sold to Henry Paget (1744-1812), 1st Earl of Uxbridge, who left it to his nephew Sir William Irby (1707-1775), 2nd Baronet and later 1st Baron Boston. The property remained in the Boston family until it was sold in 1958.

The Grade II* listed Old St Nidan’s Church, which is adjacent to Llanidan House, is on the site of a church said to have been founded by the Welsh saint Nidan in the 7th century. The existing structure dates back to the 14th century. A new anglican church also dedicated to St Nidan was built between 1839 and 1843 about half a mile away on the main Brynsiencyn road. The old church, which was in need of repair, was partially demolished and its contents moved to the new church built to serve the growing population of Brynsiencyn. Amongst the items transferred was a 66 cm-long sandstone chest found below the altar in 1700 by Henry Rowlands (1655-1723), rector of St Nidan’s from 1696, which was thought to contain the remains of Nidan. There is a story from the 12th century of a mystical stone in the form of a human thigh, which would magically return to the church by the following day no matter how far it was taken away. This stone came to be embedded (for safe keeping, one presumes!) in the wall of the churchyard. Its magical properties must have become somewhat diminished, however, as Rowlands later reported that it had been stolen.

The old church was never deconsecrated and was bought in 1994. It was restored by the owners of Llanidan House as a private chapel and is open to the public at the same time as the garden.

Further Reading

Llanidan Hall (National Gardens Scheme);
Llanidan Hall (British Listed Buildings);
St Nidan’s Church, Llanidan (Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales)

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Light Ring

Light Ring, Information Board on Malltraeth Cob

Light Ring, Information Board on Malltraeth Cob

Date

3 July 2015

Location

Malltraeth, Anglesey
SH 40836 68453; 53.18927°N, 4.38369°W

Information

The light rings were observed on the perspex cover of the information panel on Malltraeth Cob.

The image has been featured on the Optics Picture of the Day site, which gives an explanation of the optical phenomena behind the effect.

Further Reading

Scratched perspex, light rings and diffraction (Atmospheric Optics);
Malltraeth Cob

Malltraeth Cob

Malltraeth Pool from the embankment with the mountains of the Nantlle Ridge in the background

Malltraeth Pool from the embankment with the mountains of the Nantlle Ridge in the background

Date

3 July 2015
Location

Malltraeth, Anglesey

SH 40836 68453; 53.18927°N, 4.38369°W

Information

Malltraeth Cob is a 1.6 km long sea embankment forming part of the flood-defence system of Malltraeth Marsh. The latter is a flatland valley 8 km long and 3 km wide lying on either side of the Afon Cefni to the south of Llangefni on Anglesey. The river Cefni itself is 17 km long, starts at Llyn Cefni and empties into the Irish Sea at Malltraeth Sands.

With existing defences having been breached by storms in the 1790s, extensive repair work overseen by Scottish civil engineers Thomas Telford (1757-1834) and John Rennie (1761-1821) was undertaken in the early 19th century, with the current cob being completed in 1812. The river was also canalised and embanked and the draining of the marsh enabled agricultural use of the land as well as the development of the A5 road and the coal mine at Pentre Berw. The Chester and Holyhead Railway was also lain across the reclaimed land, with the viaduct over the river being completed in 1848.

Malltraeth Marsh has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and it includes an RSPB reserve.

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