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Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Heads or Tails Tuesday - Stack

I wasn't going to participate in today's Heads or Tails Tuesday. Stack? I thought. What the heck can I do with that? In desperation, I started looking through some old pics. I came across one I took of an old chimney stack, at a former industrial site in the upper Swansea Valley, south-west Wales, a few miles from my home. I don't remember exactly where this is - somewhere near Pontardawe. Glantawe? Glanrhyd? Although I know it's the remains of an old industry, and suspect it's associated with one of the metal industries (copper? tin?), I know nothing of its history. I think the area is used as a recreational area nowadays.

Then, I thought of Stack Rocks in Pembrokeshire, on the west coast of Wales. The rocks are also known as Elegug Stacks. Elegug (pronounced el-egg-igg) is Welsh for guillemot, which is most apt, as the Stacks are a valuable breeding ground for sea birds, including thousands of guillemots, razor-bills, fulmar, kittiwake, herring gulls and black-backed gulls. St Govan's Chapel can be found nearby. This ancient hermitage dates mainly from the 13th century, but parts of it are from the 6th century.

Tigr - Creative Commons

I found myself wondering if there were any other Welsh landmarks associated with the word 'stack'. I remembered that Stack Rocks isn't too far away from the very scenic Stackpole, also in Pembrokeshire. Stackpole is close to the famous Bosherston Lily Ponds, and sharp-eyed visitors will also detect the remains of Bronze and Iron Age settlements nearby.

geiza_dobashi - Creative Commons

The only other Welsh landmark with associated with 'stack' that I can think of, is South Stack lighthouse, off the North Wales coast. The lighthouse is perched on a tiny islet known as South Stack Rock, close to Holyhead Island. There has been a lighthouse on this spot since 1809.

Stu Worral - Creative Commons

I'm quite surprised by where today's Heads or Tails Tuesday has taken me - practically the whole length of Wales, with a little history thrown in for good measure. Funny how a single word can take you on an unexpected journey, isn't it?


FRIGGA said...

Those are very nice pictures - I especially like the 2nd one, with the first one coming in a close 2nd. Hehe, did I confuse you? Happy H/T!! :P

Anonymous said...

The old chimney could be at Clydach, in which case it was to do with Mond Nickel.
Once I ran up from Govan's Chapel to the top of the cliff - those were the days. When I went there, the German army were training for the first time in Wales... it was bizarre to see feldgrau on home ground.

Skittles said...

Hehe.. at first I thought you had posted only the first picture and I was going to say how beautiful it is. (I still think that.) I LOVE ruins and old and/or broken down places.

Then I saw the next two and was amazed at the beauty of those. The sea looks fierce in the first of those.

Ahhh.. then the old lighthouse in sunset. Perfection!

mharia said...

what beautiful shots!
.. and thank you for the additional info on each picture. :)

captain lifecruiser said...

Ahhhh.... Such a delight for me! I've wanted to visit Wales and now I have thanks to you. Well, part of.

I've been to London, South of Ireland and most of Scotland and I must say I just ADORE the nature you have. And the buidlings. and the people. *giggles*

My stack is making me to a couch potato... *giggles*

jenn said...

Amazing pictures. They are all beautiful places I would love to see myself.

Siani said...

Thanks for the comments, everyone. I'm afraid I can't take credit for the last three pics - they're not mine. The first one, of the old industrial site, is my effort.

Aileni - I know the Clydach Mond site well. This site is a few miles further up the valley, somewhere beyond Pontardawe. I think it's either in Glanrhyd or Glantawe, and is now the focal point of some kind of park or recreational area. We stopped there after taking a small detour, en route to the Brecon Beacons. I'll email my friend and ask her where it is, as it was near her sister's house.

Rambler said...

oh amazing interpretation of the work stack :)
thanks for showing us all around :)

Misty Dawn said...

All of the photos are gorgeous. This was a very beautiful and enjoyable post! Your photo (the first one) is really awesome!

Mike said...

Very good photos. It fits perfectly with the theme as far as I can see. Good job.

bundle-o-contradictions said...

How beautiful. Someday I hope to visit England & your blog often makes me wish I could afford it right now! :) Thanks for sharin'!

tegdirb92 said...

Wow, I'm glad you decided to participate because those are LOVELY pictures!!

Shan said...

Thanks for stopping by earlier!

That last picture is amazing...and you are right. It is amazing where that one word can take you. I asn't going to post today, wither, but I was inspired by randomness :-)

Hope to see you again.

Christie O. said...

wow!! how gorgeous are those pictures!!! great stacks! happy hort!

Heart of Rachel said...

Those are wonderful photos. Such wonderful places worth visiting. It was nice reading about the background of each photo.

Andrée said...

Your photos are so beautiful, thank you for posting them! As gorgeous as the scenery is, I really enjoyed the first photo because it was dark, stark, lonely for the past.