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Incline Stage 2, Llanfoist Inclines

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NPRN91649
Map ReferenceSO21SE
Grid ReferenceSO2809012808
Unitary (Local) AuthorityMonmouthshire
Old CountyMonmouthshire
CommunityLlanfoist Fawr
Type Of SiteTRAMWAY
PeriodPost Medieval
Description
This is the second 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 incline stage descends from relatively open enclosed land into the wooded Cwm Craf. A plan of 1836 indicates that a Woodhouse Esq was the owner of the land on either side of this incline stage and it is likely that the Blaenavon Iron and Coal Company purchased the corridor of land for this incline stage from him. By the time of the 1844 tithe of Llanfoist, the land directly adjacent to the incline was owned by Rev. David Jones and leased to John Tuker

The incline head (NPRN 405138) is at SO 28067 12797 from where it descends some 30m over a distance of 235m (making this the least steep of all the 4 inclines), down to the head of incline stage 3 (NPRN 91650) at SO 2817 1287. The lower section of the incline was created through the terracing of the hillside, to create a level area some 6m wide. As the cwm opened out in the upper stages, the line of the incline can at first be traced as a raised causeway some 35m and 6m wide, before it becomes enclosed in its upper section, bounded on the south by a scarp 0.5m high and on the north by a 42m long section of bank.

Two modern track-ways cut across the incline and there has been disturbance to the upper section around the incline head. 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 it is likely that the stone for these was obtained from a series of quarries situated alongside incline stage 3 (NPRNs 270125, 270126, 270127, 401118, 405119, 405120, 405122). The winding wheel and brake engine was located at the head of the incline (NPRN 405138 ) and the remains of a bridge to the east of this, supported the tramway and allowed for the safe passage undernesth it of animals and people (NPRN 270132 ).

This incline was surveyed by RCAHMW in December 2004 at the request of Cadw and World Heritage Site Partnership to provide an accurate and comprehensive archaeological record of the monument.

Louise Barker, RCAHMW, 18th October 2005.
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