Abergavenny, Holy Mountain 1898

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Caption for Abergavenny, Holy Mountain 1898: In medieval times a chapel dedicated to St Michael stood on the 1595ft summit of Skirrid Fawr, Holy Mountain. Among many legends locally were that its soil had healing properties and that the cleft in its western slopes occurred at the time of the Crucifixion. It is also possible that its Welsh name, Ysgyryd, comes from ysgariad, meaning 'separation' or 'divorce'. Archdeacon Coxe, who wrote a famous account of his travels through the county in 1801, reached the summit of the Skirrid 'with animation and lassitude, horror and delight'. Certainly any worshippers at the summit chapel must have found reaching the elevated site a challenge too.

An extract from Around Alton Photographic Memories.

Memories of Abergavenny


I think this a picture of Abergavenny Town Hall, but am not sure. When we were staying in Abergavenny we lived outside, in Albany Road, on the way to the Rholben and the Deri, which we often climbed and as we didn't go into the town awfully much, only when my mother needed something, I have only vague memories of it. My (...Read full memory)

My parents ran Ye Old Herefordshire (a pub) in 1963 for three months. It was a rough old place and the police would come in at closing time to make sure there was no trouble. Next door was the Kai Nam restaurant. I was at boarding school in Cardiff, and I remember being called 'chinky lover' because I would eat with (...Read full memory)

Annie Tranter was born in Abergavenny in 1884 at 2 Chapel Road. Her brother David had a flower shop in town. I have traced the Tranters back to 1750 in Abergavenny. I have been there to visit, great town.

The Deri, Rholben, Llanwenarth Breast, Big Skirrid, Little Skirrid etc. would be regarded as hills when compared to the mountains in Germany and Switzerland, but for us children they were real mountains, and we loved climbing them. This view of the Deri was practically the same as the one we had from our grandmother's garden in Albany Road, and in the foreground the cricket ground can be seen.

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More about this scene


Caption for Abergavenny, Holy Mountain 1898: In medieval times a chapel dedicated to St Michael stood on the 1595ft summit of Skirrid Fawr, Holy Mountain. Among many legends locally were that its soil had healing properties and that the cleft in its western slopes occurred at the time of the Crucifixion. It is also possible that its Welsh name, Ysgyryd, comes from ysgariad, meaning 'separation' or 'divorce'. Archdeacon Coxe, who wrote a famous account of his travels through the county in 1801, reached the summit of the Skirrid 'with animation and lassitude, horror and delight'. Certainly any worshippers at the summit chapel must have found reaching the elevated site a challenge too.

An extract from Around Alton Photographic Memories.

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