Arts, Culture and Heritage

Llanwrthwl to Cwmdeuddwr Walk

family-friendly
parking-at-start-point
pets-welcome
rainy-day-activity
suitable-for-walking
Llanwrthwl Church

A relatively easy 3 mile walk beginning from St Gwrthwl's Church in Llanwrthwl (Grid ref: SN 970 638), mostly along tarmac lanes, crossing the River Elan where it meets the River Wye, and finishing at St Bride's Church at Cwmdeuddwr, just south west of Rhayader.


Geolocation
Route Name: Gwastedyn Church Trail - Section 6
Length of Route: 3
Walking Difficulty: Easy
Start Location: Llanwrthwl Church

St Gwrthwl’s Church, Llanwrthwl

A late Victorian building on a 4,000 year old site with large sacrificial stone.  The font is 13th century, possibly from Abbey Cwmhir.  The valley leads up to the original abandoned village.  The area abounds in bronze age cairns, standing stones and circles. Legends surround Carn Gafallt, named for King Arthur’s hound,  Saith Maen, seven maidens turned to stone by St Gwrthwl for dancing on Sunday and Drygarn Fawr and Gamriw with their massive cairns. Little is known of St Gwrthwl, “The Confessor” who could have founded his church in the 5th or 6th Centuries with connections with Vortigern or St David and St Afan. His saint’s day is the 2nd March. Of note is Penuel URC Chapel to the South dating from 1832

Eglwys Sant Gwrthwl, Llanwrthwl

Adeilad o’r cyfnod Fictoraidd diweddar ar safle 4,000 mlwydd oed gyda charreg aberthol fawr.  Mae’r bedyddfaen yn perthyn i’r drydedd ganrif ar ddeg, o bosibl o Abaty Cwmhir.  Mae’r dyffryn yn arwain i fyny at y pentref gwreiddiol sydd bellach yn anghyfannedd.  Mae llu o garneddau, meini hirion a chylchoedd o’r oes efydd yn yr ardal. Mae chwedlau yma sy’n gysylltiedig â Charn Gafallt, a enwyd ar ôl ci’r Brenin Arthur; Saith Maen, saith o forynion a gafodd eu troi’n garreg gan Sant Gwrthwl am ddawnsio ar Ddydd Sul a Drygarn Fawr a Gamriw gyda’u carneddau enfawr. Ychydig sy’n wybyddus am Sant Gwrthwl, ‘Y Cyffeswr’ a allai fod wedi sylfaenu ei eglwys yn y 5ed neu’r 6ed ganrif ac a oedd â chysylltiadau gyda Gwrtheyrn neu Ddewi Sant a Sant Afan.  Dydd y nawddsant hwn yw 2 Mawrth. Mae Eglwys Ddiwygiedig Unedig Penuel a leolir i’r De ac sy’n dyddio o 1832 yn werth ei nodi.

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St Brides Church, Cwmdeuddwr

Dedicated to St Bride which reflects the presence of a sacred well just outside the churchyard, which is a prehistoric circular site . It was here that Lord Rhys, the Welsh prince called together a gathering in the 13th century to present the vast area of the Elynedd to the monks of Strata Florida. The common of Cwmdauddwr Grange provided food for Rayader Castle.  These ancient areas still exist in designated commons and sheepwalks. The present Church is Victorian but has some interesting plaques from Nantgwillt Church which was submerged when the Elan Valley dams were built in the late 19th Century. One of these commemorates the fact that Emmeline Lewis-Lloyd, who was a pioneering Alpininist, was the 8th woman to climb Mont Blanc. The Church has a very fine ironwork rood screen.

Eglwys Santes Bride, Cwmdeuddwr

Mae’r eglwys hon, a gyflwynwyd i’r Santes Bride, yn nodi presenoldeb ffynnon gysegredig yn union y tu allan i’r fynwent, lle sy’n safle cylchol cyn-hanesyddol. Yma y galwodd yr Arglwydd Rhys, y tywysog Cymreig, gasgliad o bobl ynghyd yn y drydedd ganrif ar ddeg i gyflwyno ardal enfawr Elynedd i fynachod Ystrad Fflur. Roedd tir comin Plasty Cwmdeuddwr yn darparu bwyd ar gyfer Castell Rhaeadr.  Mae’r ardaloedd hynafol hyn yn dal i fodoli o fewn tiroedd comin a ffriddoedd dynodedig.  Mae’r Eglwys bresennol yn perthyn i oes Fictoria ond y mae yma blaciau diddorol o Eglwys Nantgwyllt a gafodd ei boddi pan adeiladwyd cronfeydd dŵr Cwm Elan yn niwedd y bedwaredd ganrif ar bymtheg.  Mae un o’r rhain yn coffau’r ffaith mai Emmeline Lewis-Lloyd, a oedd yn un o’r gwragedd cyntaf i ymddiddori yn yr Alpau, oedd yr wythfed ddynes i ddringo Mont Blanc.  Mae gan yr Eglwys groglen wych iawn o waith haearn.

Distance from town centre: 4

36 mile Gwastedyn Church Trail

family-friendly
parking-at-start-point
pets-welcome
rainy-day-activity
Gwastedyn Church Trail

This circular 36 mile trail over an established pilgrimage route begins and ends in Rhayader and Cwmdeuddwr.  Linking seven historic churches, the route uses mountain paths, lanes and old railway lines to guide you into the heart of our magnificent mountain, river and lake country.  To follow the Trail takes you into a world of history and literature derived from the world of the Celtic Saints, the Romans and Romano British, the Normans, the Welsh princes, the medieval monks through to the romantic poets and the Victorians.

Mae’r llwybr hwn, sy’n dilyn llwybr pererindod sefydledig, yn 36 milltir o hyd ac yn dechrau a diweddu yn Rhaeadr a Chwmdeuddwr.  Mae’r llwybr sy’n cysylltu saith o eglwysi hanesyddol, yn eich tywys drwy ardal odidog mynyddoedd yr Elenydd gyda’i hafonydd a’i llynnoedd, dros lwybrau mynyddig ac ar hyd ffyrdd a hen reilffyrdd gwledig. Mae dilyn y Llwybr yn eich cyflwyno i fyd hanes a llenyddiaeth o gyfnod y Seintiau Celtaidd, y Rhufeiniaid, y Brythoniaid Rhufeinig, y Normaniaid, y Tywysogion Cymreig, mynachod y canol oesoedd, hyd at y beirdd rhamantaidd ac oes Fictoria.


Route Name: Gwastedyn Church Trail
Length of Route: 36 miles
Walking Difficulty: Strenuous
Start Location: St Clement's Church

This trail is divided into more manageable six sections - see our Walking and Cycling page.

The Gwastedyn Trail is funded by the Community Welcome Scheme, which is managed by Powys County Council Tourism Section and is one of sixteen Rural Development Plan projects, which aims to assist local communities with small scale community based tourism projects.
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St Harmon to Nantmel Walk

family-friendly
parking-at-start-point
pets-welcome
rainy-day-activity
suitable-for-walking
St Harmon Church Rhayader

This 9 mile walk beginning from St Harmon Church (Grid Ref: SN 989 728), follows tarmac lanes and farm tracks giving panoramic views from Camlo Hill before reaching St Cynllo's Church at Nantmel.


Geolocation
Route Name: Gwastedyn Church Trail - Section 3
Length of Route: 9
Walking Difficulty: Moderate
Start Location: St Harmon Church

St Harmon Church

St Harmon Church was rebuilt in 1821on an ancient circular site and restored in 1904. The diarist, Revd Francis Kilvert was curate here 1876 to 1877 and wrote rather unflattering remarks about the poor state of the building. The church is dedicated to St Garmon of Auxerre who is believed to have established a monastery on the site in around 500 AD.  He and his monks are said to have spent 40 days praying for relief from the sins of Vortigern, the Romano British king who was responsible for inviting the Saxons into Britain to aid him against the Angles and Picts.  The retaining walls of the churchyard are of great antiquity. There are both Roman and Bronze age roads in the vicinity as well as many ancient monuments.

Eglwys Sant Garmon

Ailadeiladwyd Eglwys Sant Harmon ym 1821 ar safle cylchol hynafol ac fe’i hadferwyd ym 1904.  Roedd y dyddiadurwr, y Parch. Francis Kilvert, yn gurad yma o 1876 i 1877 ac ysgrifennodd sylwadau braidd yn gas am gyflwr gwael yr adeilad.  Cyflwynir yr eglwys i Sant Garmon o Auxerre y credir oedd wedi sefydlu mynachlog ar y safle oddeutu 500 OC.  Dywedir ei fod ef a’i fynaich wedi treulio 40 diwrnod yn gweddïo am ryddhad o bechodau Gwrtheyrn, y brenin Brythonig-Rufeinig a oedd yn gyfrifol am wahodd y Sacsoniaid i Brydain i’w gynorthwyo ef yn erbyn yr Eingl a’r Pictiaid.  Mae muriau cynnal y fynwent yn hen iawn. Mae ffyrdd o’r oes Rufeinig ac o’r oes Efydd yn yr ardal yn ogystal â llawer o henebion.

Distance from town centre: 3

Nantmel Village Visit

family-friendly
parking-on-site
pets-welcome
suitable-for-cycling
suitable-for-walking
Nantmel Show Rhayader Mid Wales Events

Nantmel means ‘Mael’s Valley’, Mael was a prince in the Dark Ages.  It is a very large parish that includes the settlements of Nantmel Village itself, Doldowlod, Gaufron (Geufron), Gwystre, Nant-glas and the Ysfa. It covers nearly fourteen thousand acres and has a population approaching seven hundred. The highest point is the top of Camlo Hill, with an excellent panorama of the Carneddau, Mynydd Epynt and most of the Brecon Beacons to the south and to the north on a clear day it is claimed that Cader Idris can be seen.


Distance from town centre: 5

Elan Valley Visitor Centre

family-friendly
parking-at-start-point
parking-on-site
pets-welcome
rainy-day-activity
suitable-for-cycling
suitable-for-moutain-biking
suitable-for-walking
wheelchair-accessible
Elan Valley Visitor Centre
Elan Valley Visitors Centre, Elan Valley, Rhayader, Powys LD6 5HP

The Elan Valley Visitor Centre is operated by Dwr Cymru Welsh Water and is set in a fantastic location against a spectacular backdrop of a Victorian stone dam.

It is the perfect starting point for your visit to the area. There's something for everyone; Information Desk; Shop; Cafe; Easy disabled access; Toilets; Large car park and coach parking area; Children's play area; Large picnic area; Easy parking; Education and interactive learning play an important role in the design of our centre and a Free exhibition. 

Entrance to the Visitor Centre is free, and the £2 parking charge covers you for the whole of the Estate's car parks, all day.

Season tickets for car parking are also available, please ask at the Information Desk. They cost £15 and last for 12 months.


Geolocation
Opening Times: 10.00am - 4.00pm (except Christmas day)
Entry Cost: £2 Parking fee
Contact: Elan Rangers
Tel: 01597 810880

A visit to Elan Valley never fails to delight and inspire. We are custodians of a beautiful area stretching 72 square miles with historic landscapes and thriving wildlife. The dams and reservoirs, the working legacy of remarkable Victorian engineering, add to the captivating and ever changing scenery. You can stroll, picnic or hike; cycle or mountain bike; bird watch, fish or safari!

We operate as 'not-for-profit' so the team who work here can concentrate on safeguarding this special place and ensuring you make the most of your visit. As we say in these parts, Croeso! We look forward to welcoming you to Elan Valley.

Distance from town centre: 3

Elan Valley Visitor Centre WalksElan Valley Bike HireElan Valley Visitor Centre CafeElan Valley Dams

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