I’m really lucky to be a member of staff at Nant Gwrtheyrn’s busy office (prior to Covid). Working at the ‘Nant’, as we call it, is much more than a 9-5 office job. Over the last three years, I’ve enjoyed many lunch breaks wandering around with my camera and making the most of the magical beauty on display at the Nant.
One of the most wonderful things about the Nant is seeing the changes from season to season. No two days are the same – from the evenings, when they sky is a romantic pink, to the wet and foggy days, which feel like they’ve been dragged out of the Middle Ages.
I love nature, love exploring historic areas and love taking scenic photos, so working at the Nant is a perfect fit for me.
Nant Gwrtheyrn – a brief history
Nant Gwrtheyrn is full of rich history dating back to the Iron Age, with remains that can be seen at the summit of Tre’r Ceiri, known as one of the best-preserved fortresses in Europe. The Nant is also famous for all the folk tales that are linked to the site and for being an important location for the area during the Industrial Era – remains and relics from the quarry can be seen clearly around the site.
The walk down to Porth y Nant is one of my favourite routes and as you walk down, you can see the quarry ruins all along the cliff. As you reach the beach, you can see two of the former jetty posts clearly sticking out of the sea, the only sign of what was once a huge jetty used by large ships to collect the granite from the quarry. The ships travelled from large cities such as Liverpool, and the granite setts they collected were used to build pavements and streets.
History brought to the surface, March 2020….
Until recently, these two jetty posts were the only remains that could be seen on the beach. But following the storms at the beginning of the year, I noticed a remarkable change to the beach landscape.
After 40 years of hiding under the seabed, about a dozen new wooden posts, remains of the jetty, appeared. They are different to the two large posts and are more like stumps which have the shape of the sea engraved into the wood.
Talking about the discovery on Heno (a Welsh language programme on S4C) was a great experience: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NWHHkJ_Ywo
It’s so interesting to see where the jetty once stood. Usually, storms cause damage, but on this occasion the storm bought a piece of the Nant’s history back to us and I can’t wait to see them again once this current storm has passed.