Cities 6 Cathedrals 6 and a few more castles

Today’s musings. Llan once meant meeting place. So Llantwit Major? We’ve entered the Glamorgan Heritage Coast. Heritage as distinct from non heritage coast? Who ever thinks up these definitions needs a good talking too.

The same can be said of whoever is responsible for the current mess that is Newport City centre. We’d reached there via a lovely cycle route along the Usk. Perhaps it was reaching traffic after so long which tempers views. Glassworks cottages: a clue to a former factory? Our last major puncture saga was in Newport, close to the spot today where a cyclist was mending his saying “careful glass”.

Newport City and St Woolos Cathedral, the latter at the top of a fine steep hill which must have killed a few horses drawing hearses in their day, then onto the Gwent levels. Here we stick to the minor road which weaves its way along the old Roman ditches. All too soon Cardiff.

The City Halls are those befitting a city, the civic buildings in Cathays a joy. The Llandaff Cathedral isn’t bad either. We follow the Taf for a bit though newish housing, cross the River Ely to go through Penarth. A fifteenth different county don’t you know: the Vale of Glamorgan.

Barry is interesting. The statue of David Davies reminds you it was the world’s largest coal exporting docks in 1913. 11.5million tons of coal. Yet more fascinating is its small ruined Norman castle just sitting there at the side of the road.

Llantwit Major (we can’t find the Minor) is our final stop on this mini tour. Wales’ oldest church (St Illtyd) watches over proceedings. Tomorrow the homeward leg.

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