Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Down Llyn's Memory Lane

Tan yr Ardd, Rhiw.  As it looked when it was my home in the early 1980s.
Heaven lies tucked down a grassy lane on the eastern slopes Mynydd Rhiw on the Llŷn peninsula.

Well, that's what I think anyway.  But then I'm biased. 

This was my home in the early 1980s, when I was in the brave summer of my youth.  Then, the rising moon’s silvery path led over the bay to my doorstep and at other times, the roar of the surf on Hell’s Mouth beach after a storm would keep me awake at night. 

I’ll recount the tale of my arrival here some other time, but suffice to say that I was offered the tiny cottage of Tan yr Ardd as my first independent home, and that the four formative years I lived here – and the fond memories of my farming neighbours – have become a big part of what I now am.

So it was an absolute delight to have the honour the other day – as the last long-standing occupant of the cottage – to rekindle a fire in the grate to celebrate the completion of its restoration, and that of its nearby twin, Fron Deg.

This pair of crog-loft cottages – or tydynnod in the parlance of the Llŷn folk – has stood empty and apparently unloved for over a quarter of a century; their chimneys missing the “hances o fwg(handkerchief of smoke) that used to indicate the presence of a community. 

Well, all that’s about to change as the Trust and its partners get to grips with one of the most exciting parts of the HLF-funded Llŷn Landscape Partnership project.  

The ‘Mab y Bwthyn’ (Son of the Cottage) plan will see Fron Deg being developed as a destination for guided educational walks that will provide an insight into the crucial part the tyddynnwyr played in the making of Llŷn’s landscape.  My former home Tan yr Ardd will be reunited with its land – a dozen acres of heathy pasture – and let as a modern smallholding, giving a lucky new tenant an opportunity to combine working the land with caring for the neighbouring cottage.

“Would you be interested in coming back?”  More than one person asked me.

“No, never go back” came the melancholic answer.

I hope you enjoy some photos of the occasion....

Tan yr Ardd - newly restored, thanks to the Llyn Landscape Partnership

Fron Deg - the best-preserved tyddyn in Llyn?

NT General Manager, Trystan Edwards, invites the project partners to take a preview of Tan yr Ardd
(a public open day is being organised for the spring).

Trystan and Operations Manager Andy Godber are interviewed for a film about the project - soon to be available online.
Colleagues and partners come to admire the builders' handiwork at Fron Deg

1 comment:

  1. I had the pleasure of flicking through a photo album documenting the renovation work whilst waiting for Milgi to make me a coffe at Plas Glyn Y Weddw. Fantastic effort. It must have been a real thrill to light that fire. (Let me know if you ever need help in letting them out!)