Cerrigydrudion Village Centre
Cerrigydrudion, sometimes spelt Cerrig-y-drudion, is a village and parish in Denbighshire. The village formerly lay on the A5 road, but a short by-pass now takes the road along the south-western edge of the village. Prior to the by-pass being built, Cerrigydrudion was the highest village on the A5 between London and Holyhead.
Geography and history
Geographically the area is classed as moorland and less favourable grassland. It is on the outskirts of Mynydd Hiraethog. The oldest feature of the village is the parish church dedicated to Saint Mary Magdalene. It is believed to have existed in AD 440. It is also mentioned in the 'Norwich Taxation' of 1254. The village is the largest in the area known as Uwchaled which also includes Llangwm, Pentrefoelas, Pentre-llyn-cymer, Dinmael, Glasfryn, Cefn Brith, Llanfihangel Glyn Myfyr and Cwm Penanner. Llangwm and Pentrefoelas are stand-alone ecclesiastical parishes whilst the remainder fall within the parish of Cerrigydrudion. However, there are multiple Nonconformist chapels throughout the area of Uwchaled, located in many of the minor villages and hamlets.
The village was mentioned in the writings of several noted travellers including Edward Lhuyd and George Borrow. It attained a certain significance in the 18th century when Thomas Telford built the A] turnpike road between London and Holyhead. This would be the main route to Ireland. The road passed through the village. In the farmhouse of Ceirnioge Mawr, where the stagecoach and Mail coach horses were changed, there is a plaque marking the fact that Queen Victoria stopped there en route to Ireland.
The current population of the parish stands at 692 residents.
Remnants of human habitation have been found in the area dating back to the Mesolithic era. Many of these were found in the area of Llyn Brenig, a manmade reservoir to the north of the village. The reservoir was built between 1973 and 1976 and was one of the major British engineering projects of that era. Today it is the most important tourist attraction in the area and provides competition-class fly fishing facilities for many visitors.
One of the most famous sons of the parish is John Jones (known as Jac Glan-y-gors), who was a leading Radical at the end of the 18th century. His ideas were published in the polemical pamphlets Seren tan Gwmwl ("Star under a Cloud") and Toriad y Dydd ("Break of Day").
Cerrigydruidion Golf Club (now defunct) was founded in 1898. The club and course disappeared at the time of WW2.
Economy and daily life
The biggest employer in the parish remains agriculture although tourism-related work is becoming common.
Apart from the church the village has two active Nonconformist chapels. These are Jerusalem, which is dedicated to the Methodist Calvinist group, and Moriah which follows the Congregational path. A third chapel, Seion, which was part of the Wesleyan tradition, was closed in 2002.
The village has two public houses, The White Lion and The Saracens. The White Lion was owned in the 1970s by the entertainer Ronnie Williams who formed half of the duo Ryan and Ronnie. It once received as a guest the British Prime Minister David Lloyd George when he was unable to return home due to heavy snowfall. Across the road from The White Lion is The Queens Head, which closed in the 1990s.
Other facilities include a cafe on the A5 main road called Ty Tan Llan Cafe,a butchers shop called Cig-Y-Llan, HSBC bank, public toilets, library, provisions shop.
Nearby is the older Alwen Reservoir, built between 1909 and 1921 to provide drinking water for Birkenhead in Cheshire. At its conception the engineer who designed the dam, George Deacon, also planned Llyn Brenig, built over half a century later.
One of the most popular social gatherings in the village occurs on the first Saturday in September when the local Agricultural Show takes place. This attracts upwards of 3,000 people and is one of the most successful non-county shows in Wales.
- Office for National Statistics : Census 2001 : Parish Headcounts : Conwy
- “Cerrigydruidion Golf Club”, “Golf’s Missing Links”.
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