Penllergare Valley Woods

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Parc Llewelyn – one of the most major Victorian parks of Swansea

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Did you know? Parc Llewelyn (Swansea) was named for John Dillwyn Llewelyn (the creator of the Penllergare landscape) who donated the land and paid for much of its laying out to provide a much needed recreational outlet and fresh air for the people crowded into the stench and dirt of the industrialised valley below.

For that reason the Penllergare Trust has always had a cousinly interest in the place, but it was local people (echoing the origins of the Valley Woods project) who voiced concern that Parc Llewelyn was suffering from neglect and was threatened by encroaching development.

The Trust’s first act was to invoke the Freedom of Information Act to discover the original Deed of Covenant of 1878. To our relief this categorically states that the land is to be used as a public park ‘forever’ and any plans for development soon evaporated.

At the invitation of the nascent Parc Friends’ group the Trust then employed Rob Skinner, a post-graduate student, to research and write up the history of the park and its people. His dissertation amply confirmed the historical and social importance of the place so we asked Cadw to consider adding it to the ‘Register of Parks & Gardens of Special Historic Interest in Wales’.

We’re delighted to say that Cadw has agreed to do so, thereby adding another layer of protection to what they describe as, “… one of the most major Victorian parks of Swansea and the first and most important on the east side of the city”.

We would recommend that if you’ve never visited this gem of a place, you should do so!

For more information the Friends’ of Parc Llewelyn’s website address is www.friendsofparcllewelyn.co.uk

Michael Norman
Company Secretary (Penllergare Trust)

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