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Incline Stage 1, Llanfoist Inclines

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NPRN91648
Map ReferenceSO21SE
Grid ReferenceSO2777512713
Unitary (Local) AuthorityMonmouthshire
Old CountyMonmouthshire
CommunityLlanfoist Fawr
Type Of SiteTRAMWAY
PeriodPost Medieval
Description
This is the first of four inclines (NPRN 405096) descending Cwm Craf on the Blorenge which formed part of Hill's Tramroad (NPRN 85860). Constructed from 1818 and in operation until the 1870's the incline transported limestone and fluxing stone from the Pwll du quarries; iron goods, principally from the Garnddyrs Forge, but also from the Blaenavon works; and coal from the Bodolog level and latterly New Pit, down to Llanfoist where links were made with the Brecknock and Abergavenny Canal, the Llanvihangel Railway and a series of limekilns in Llanfoist village.

This is the top incline stage and descends through enclosed pasture land towards the wooded Cwm Craf Valley. The Blaenavon Iron and Coal Company purchased the corridor of land for this incline stage from Ferdinand Hanbury Williams, with the exception of a small section near the top which they leased from the Earl of Abergavenny. Evidence of the pre-industrial landscape here is seen on either side of the incline (NPRNs 405026, 405035, 405036).

The incline head (NPRN 405139) at SO 27734 12702 is where the main section of the animal drawn tramroad ended. From here the incline descends some 87m over a distance of 230m, down to the head of incline stage 2 (NPRN 91649) at SO 2817 1287. The course of the incline is clearly visible, with the bottom 74m section a cutting into the hillside, some 3m deep. The upper section is not as clearly defined although in places a line of stones marks the edge of the tramway corridor and a bank up to 4m high runs along the northern edge of the upper 70m section.

With the exception of a modern track-way which cuts across the incline halfway up, the incline is relatively well preserved. A series of roughly rectangular single-holed stone blocks which survive along the route would originally have held the iron rails of the 2 foot gauge double track and the stone for these may have been obtained from a series of quarries situated alongside incline stages 2 and 3 (NPRNs 270125, 270126, 270127, 401118, 405119, 405120, 405122, 405123, 405128). The winding wheel and brake engine would have been located at the head of the incline, where there are also the remains of a number of buildings (NPRN 405139)

This incline was surveyed by RCAHMW in February 2006.

Louise Barker, RCAHMW, 20th October 2006.
Resources
DownloadTypeSource
application/postscriptDSC - RCAHMW Digital Survey Collection
application/pdfDSC - RCAHMW Digital Survey Collection
nullDSC - RCAHMW Digital Survey Collection
text/plainDSC - RCAHMW Digital Survey Collection