CANDLESTON CASTLE, Merthyr Mawr, Glamorgan 2009

CANDLESTON CASTLE, Merthyr Mawr, Glamorgan 2009
Notes on CANDLESTON CASTLE, Merthyr Mawr, Glamorgan 2009

I visited Candleston Castle and maze-like sand dunes of Merthyr Mawr (otherwise known, justifiably as ‘The Warren’) in 2003. Back then it was a crumbling ruin all but lost in the summer overgrowth and I did not bother making any exposures. It appears now that it has been consolidated as a ruin – it stands adjacent to the car park for the sand dunes and as, throughout the years, been an easy target for vandals.

It is a small 14th century fortified domestic castle/manor house with a castellated wall surrounding the house - the wall is struggling against the encroachment of foliage and is all but hidden in the summer months. There is a large stone 14th century fireplace openly on view on the first floor and there was once a 13th century tower but there is no obvious evidence of this now.

My first visit in 2003 was mixed. Vandals had built fires against the walls, grafitti was sprayed on its walls and it had become a small dumping ground. However, Candleston sits in a spectacular setting (although much of its land is now covered in sand) and in the winter, whilst the trees are barren, a good view can be had from a 100 foot high sand dunes that towers beside it.

Candleston Castle 2009

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CANDLESTON CASTLE, Merthyr Mawr, Glamorgan 2009


Photo comment By A Davies: As a boy in Porthcawl in the 1940s, we once organised a hike to the castle. Travelling by bus to Tythegston - I remember an old fashioned working hand water pump by the roadside there - we took the road towards the coast and this soon gave way ,if I remember correctly, to a track or path. We discovered some giant grasshoppers along the way which we were convinced were locusts! The castle then was felt to be a somewhat mysterious and remote location unaffected by any human activity. We had glorious fun in exploring the place and climbing the impressive sand dunes then travelling down again at high speed. We walked home along the sands. A memorable day I was sorry to hear that such a remarkable location and building had been left to the lethal combination of neglect and modern living. The inevitable neighbouring car park provision appears to be the essential of every council for every beauty spot thereby guaranteeing the probable despoilation of what people wish to see! Why dont they 'go green and get healthy' - abolish such places and ensure people walk!(The vandals will never bother!) Yeah likely and no doubt reduce Council Tax too! I enjoyed visiting your site. AD

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