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Historic Background

In the Medieval Period this area lay within Strata Florida Abbey’s Pennardd Grange. Upon the Dissolution, the granges were granted to the Earl of Essex, who sold them to the Crosswood Estate in 1630. It is likely that Pennardd, in common with the other granges, was divided into farms and leased out on a commercial basis by the end of the Medieval Period, if not earlier. The farms in this area may have originated in this system. The tithe map of 1845 (Caron parish) is the earliest large-scale survey of the area. This shows the farms of Blaen-Glasffrwd, Hafod Newydd and Tynygarreg, plus two un-named cottages having small fields nearby and larger fields further out, set in a sea of unenclosed sheep-walk. Since the tithe survey there has been a retreat of settlement, and enclosures tend to be farmed as very large units. A hafod place-name suggests that the farm containing that name originated out of a system of transhumance.

Description and essential historic landscape components

This area, which is now surrounded by forestry, lies in an open upland valley between 400m and 500m. One farm is currently occupied, and sits in a landscape of improved pasture with peaty and rushy hollows, and rough grazing on some of the steeper slopes. Boundary banks that formerly divided the area into fields are generally redundant, and wire fences now form the main stock-proof boundary. These divide the area into a series of large units. It is a treeless landscape.

Deserted post-Medieval settlements in the archaeological record testify to a far more populated landscape than now. Several Bronze Age round barrows or cairns and a possible standing stone add time-depth to the landscape.

This area is clearly defined by a surrounding forestry plantation.

Blaen-glasffrwd map


Base map reproduced from the OS map with the permission of Ordnance Survey on behalf of The Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery Office, Crown Copyright 2001.
All rights reserved. Unauthorised reproduction infringes Crown Copyright and may lead to prosecution or civil proceedings. Licence Number: GD272221


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