Lady Mary’s Walk

Date: 9 October 2021

Location: Gwydyr Forest, Llanrwst 53.13219234°N, -3.80959076°W

The 2 km walking trail through the forest starts from the Sawbench car park and is named after one of the two Lady Marys from the Wynn family, which owned the Gwydyr Estate.

Gwydyr Bowling Green was created around 400 years ago by Sir John Wynn. The site, which has splendid views over the town of Llanrwst, was rediscovered in 2003.

13 thoughts on “Lady Mary’s Walk

  1. The idea of a site in Wales being rediscovered as recently as 2003 makes me scratch my head. But maybe you mean in terms of public recognition? So people might have found that spot in the woods where the town can be seen and kept quiet about it, then the trail was put in? Whatever the case, what a lovely walk that must be! I love the opening image. “Oak Towers” is a nice idea. We have a pair of enormous old Douglas fir trees growing on either side of a narrow road here. It’s just called the “Two Trees.” We should call them Fir Towers or something like that. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • So, here is what the Welsh ancient monuments authority has to say on the subject:

      “The bowling green, named on a map of about 1820, was mentioned in an article of 1901 and was
      used by local people as a picnic spot and for carol-singing until the 1930s. It was then
      afforested and ‘lost’, until recently rediscovered and clear-felled by Forest Enterprise.” (https://coflein.gov.uk/media/17/401/cpg005.pdf)

      “Two Trees” appeals to me with its literal directness. Brings to mind a major road junction (between the Bath and Wells roads) near where I lived in Bristol, which has a sign post featuring three globe lamps. The junction is rather imaginatively known as the “Three Lamps”. – https://historicengland.org.uk/services-skills/education/educational-images/sign-post-at-three-lamps-bath-road-totterdown-5661#:~:text=It%20dates%20from%20the%20early,It%20was%20restored%20around%201985.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I am making you work, sorry! 😉 But that was interesting, including the word, “afforested.” Nice. But when they say it was clear-felled I would think that meant the whole woods was cut. Probably not. I’m guessing just enough to reestablish the viewing place. I see your Forest Enterprise is not a commercial outfit, which is what it might be with that name in the US, but is a governmental agency to manage forests (?).

        Yes, “Two Trees’ does have a very pleasing literal directness. Point well taken! Three Lamps, I like that. OK, I won’t complain about our Two Trees spot on the road, which is called Heart Lake Raod, kind of nice, right? 🙂
        Forgive me for not having the patience to read all of the first link but I have to say it’s very, very impressive, the detail that this kind of document goes into. With such a long history of land use by humans, that makes sense. Try to go back that far in the American Pacific Northwest and you have virtually nothing: Europeans, with their written records, hadn’t arrived or hadn’t stayed and indigenous people had no written records, just oral traditions that mostly were obliterated due to the illnesses and deaths brought by Europeans. Stone wasn’t used for building so most dwellings were lost as well. It’s an interesting contrast, isn’t it?

        For Three Lamps I pictured something more impressive, but it’s all good. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

        • No need to apologise – I enjoy digging into such things. As far as I can make out, Forest Enterprise is, or was, part of the government body The Forestry Commission, which I believe has now been amalgamated in Wales into “Natural Resources Wales” – the body that replaced the former Environment Agency. I feel that that rebranding may have marked a subtle shift in emphasis from an agency to protect the environment to one to perhaps exploit its resources…

          And, yes, that is quite a contrast in the extent of the available historic records in our respective lands.

          😌🙏✨

          Like

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