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DEVELOPMENTS 2010 - 2011

After a great deal of planning and looking for sources of of funding there are two major developments starting in the Welsh/Top quarry [shown in blue circle].

CLICK on the blue buttons in the quarry to find out what is going on!

Top or Welsh quarry buttons

VIEWPOINT UPDATE
SUMMER 2011

PREVIOUS UPDATES:
NOV 2010
DEC 2010
JAN 2011

Welsh Gin Wheel link

BUILDING A TOPOSCOPE

A toposcope is a monument erected on hills which indicates the direction and distance to notable landscape features.

The Llimeys (Friends of Llanymynech Limeworks Heritage Area) have obtained funding to build a toposcope on the viewpoint near to the entrance to the Welsh/top quarry.
The Llimeys want the toposcope to be more than a plaque on a plinth but also a sculptural monument reflecting the history and geography of this cross-border site.
Consultations about the design will be held in the second week of November with the two local schools and with local community organisations.
These consultations will result in proposals for the toposcope being produced by creu-ad of Machynlleth. The proposals will later be displayed for consideration by all members of the community.

Part of the view from the toposcope site
Hoffman chimney viewed from toposcope site Site for toposcope Llanymynech from toposcope site

When the design ideas are finalised (end of November 2010?) there will be a display at the Stables in the Heritage Area. This will also include a display of the children’s work. This is an exciting project that will put Llanymynech on the map yet again.

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CONSOLIDATING THE BRAKE DRUM / GIN WHEEL HOUSES

There is a technical name and, as always, a common term for these ‘houses’ which operated the tramway system to take stone from the quarry. The large drums were brakes which controlled the speed at which the loaded truck went down the inclines. Whilst there was no fuel involved, these structures were considered to be engines. The word ‘engine’ was shortened to ‘gin’.
One of the gin wheels in the top quarry controlled the incline through the tunnel, on the right of the picture below, and the second controlled the Welsh incline, shown at the bottom of the picture.

Welsh top Quarry when working
Top quarry photo from golf course
Gin wheel by Welsh incline gin wheel top quarry by tunnel

It is hoped that all the work to consolidate and stabilise will be completed, weather permitting, by the spring of 2011.

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UPDATE of November 2010

UPDATE of November 2010

Consultation on the toposcope took place on 11th and 12th of November 2010. This involved daytime workshops with older pupils from Carreghofa and Bryn Offa primary schools. The pupils were involved in producing images which represented the history of the area from the bronze age to the present.

Work on time-line images from school workshop

Images from early times

One of the three workshops for schools

Workshop underway in the stable block

Carreghofa school copy

Images from more recent times

DECEMBER 2010 UPDATE

DECEMBER 2010 OPEN DAY

Following the workshops and consultations held in November, a well attended open day was held on Sunday, 12th December. The day was cold and foggy but the stable block was warm and welcoming with seasonal refreshments provided. Creu-ad set out the work from the school workshops and proposals for the structure of the viewpoint. The term ‘viewpoint’ is now being used as this gained more favour than the less well known ‘toposcope’. The photos below are from the open day.

Discussing the project More discussion That's what I made earlier
Possible models

Two possible structures were discussed. The polystyrene model ‘a’ to the left of the photo represents a stone structure. The taller part of the model would, in reality, be one metre tall. Information about the view would be on top of the structure with selected art work on the face. The shorter part represents a stone base with a seat made form oak.

On the right of the photo is model ‘b’ which is a steel structure. This is an alternative to the taller polystyrene part of model ‘a’.

Elwyn Downes, who has done much building work around the heritage area and Gideon Peterson, the sculptor who produced the models, ventured through the cold and fog to the site of the viewpoint.

In the photo to the right, the semicircular sheet is the proposed location of the viewpoint structure. The yellow tape measure is the location of the oak-topped seat.

Measuring up on site
Lack of view

This is the tip of the viewpoint site looking towards Rodney’s pillar.

Above the fog

Spectacular fog views!

The biggest issue in making the viewpoint is getting access to the site. Permission has been gained to make use of the stone which has been tipped near the site. The paths to the site are just wide enough for a wheelbarrow or a mini-digger - nothing larger. If the viewpoint was made completely of stone, about three tons of sand would be needed. Then there would be the necessary lime and water to make mortar. To get this amount of material to the site would be a very time consuming task. Time also equals costs.
Because of these issues, a compromise structure has been agreed upon. The brief for the main part of the viewpoint, is to make a very low stone base supporting a steel structure, as model ‘b’ above. The seat will be as model ‘a’, above.

If you have any comments or suggestions regarding any aspect of the viewpoint or the limeworks heritage in general please contact:
            
llimeys@llanymynech.org.uk or websitemanager@llanymynech.org.uk

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Work started on consolidating the brake drum / gin wheel houses in the Welsh/ top quarry in early November 2010. The structures are being cleared of undergrowth and the original stonework is being made secure. The Welsh house is the older and was most damaged by time and the invading plant growth.
The stonework is being made secure with lime mortar. As lime mortar is badly affected by frost, all building work has had to stop until next spring.
To protect the mortar against early frosts, it was covered with sacking each night.
The photos below show the progress made up to mid November and also a particular question raised about the structure of the Welsh house.

Builders site hut Another visit to toposcope site

Site hut of I J Preece and Son Ltd, the building restoration firm carrying out the work. All materials are taken along the path by a motorised wheelbarrow. The hut is now empty. To remove the hut and bring it back in the spring is not practical so it will remain on site over the winter.

Visit to toposcope site by planners and designers.

Most work has been done on the Welsh house, shown below. One feature of this house is the part of the structure to the east. This has a small door-like opening facing the incline. A photo below shows the ‘room’ through this door. There have been several outbuildings attached to this structure.
The single wall to the west has the remains of timbers at its very top which could have held the axle for the brake drum.

View of Welsh drum from incline - 'room' to right Gin by Welsh incline - view from east
Welsh gin - lookingthrough small door opening east Welsh house single wall to left - 'room' wall to right

The photo above, bottom left, is taken through the small ’door’. The inner ‘room’ has the remains of large timbers in both its long walls.
The original use of these timbers is not know but they are of a size which could have supported a brake drum.
The photo above, bottom right, shows the single wall to the left and the ‘room’ wall to the right.
One suggestion is that this ‘room’ was the site for an original small brake drum with ropes or chains which went through the ‘door’ to an incline which is now hidden alongside the Welsh incline. This original small drum was later replaced by a larger drum between the ‘room’ wall and the single wall.
Another suggestion is that it was some sort of gearing housing which operated machinery in the attached outbuildings as trucks went down the inline.
Any other suggestions????? contact EITHER websitemanager@llanymynech.org.uk OR llimeys@llanymynech.org.uk
 

Gin by incline to tunnel
Tunnel brake house from top of tunnel incline

The two photos, immediately above, are of the brake house at the top of the tunnel incline. Work here has just involved removal of the undergrowth. This brake house was built to replace the work of the Welsh house. This would explain the fact that the timber beams are more intact.

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Border Viewpoint - Gwel y Ffin
PRESENTATION AND EXHIBITION OF DESIGNS - JANUARY 2011
DESCRIPTION OF VIEWPOINT BELOW

Description of Llanymynech Border Viewpoint , Gwel-y-ffin.
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MORE INFORMATION TO BE POSTED ON THIS PAGE ---------STAY TUNED!

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