Cowbridge and Llanblethian, 10th January

Under grey skies, Graham, Liz, Moyra D, Moira C and Mags departed Wick Village Hall to travel to Cowbridge cattle market where we parked our respective vehicles. Suitably garbed in wet weather gear, we commenced our morning walk, through the back lanes, through wooded area to arrive at top of Constitution Hill, Llanblethian.

WWs resident photographer was in action at the gatehouse of St Quentin’s Castle. This was our first point of interest en route. Although the 12th century Castle is but a ruin, the gatehouse remains an imposing structure. This is a grade 2 listed building is looked after by CADW.

Down hill from the castle ruin to ‘Piccadilly’, we then climbed Church Road to St John the Baptist 12c Church. The building was significantly restored at the end of 19th century. A vaulted crypt containing a large number of human bones was discovered beneath the south chapel during restoration in 1896. The pulpit is multi coloured stone with a preponderance of pink Penarth plaster.

Leaving the Church, we made our way to Glyndwr vineyard. Sadly, no one around to offer us a ‘snifter’! To add insult to injury, the nearby Cross Inn is permanently closed!

The group, by this time, were looking forward to a refreshment stop; a convenient bench was located in the churchyard of St Brynach Church which can be accessed down the lane across from The Cross Inn. A notice informed that the key to the church could be obtained from The Cross Inn. No alternative was offered given said public house firmly closed and shuttered.

Some of the group members held a preference for this, St Brynach’s more simple religious building, to that of the more grand St John’s Church. Unusual double stone styles were used to rest the coffins being carried from Penllyn village to the church, allowing the bearers to climb the style.

We left our place of rest to walk along the new road, down to the cattle market car park.

This may have been a grey and drizzle morning; however, it was agreed that the fun and laughter we shared en route, made for a most enjoyable jaunt.