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Tours > Wales > Mold

by Peter N. Williams, Ph.D., Editor, Wales on Britannia

Mold was the administrative centre (the county town) of the old county of Flintshire. Fewer than ten miles from Chester, its accents are hardly those of North Wales, yet a significant Welsh presence is felt in the town. The town lies in the shadow of the Clwydian Hills, with the pimpled summit of Moel Fammau (Moyle Vammah) casting a protective eye on the town's narrow and congested streets.

At the top of town, Bailey Hill stands on the site of a Norman motte and Bailey castle, is now occupied by the 15th century parish church. A statue of Daniel Owen, Wales's local-born 19th century novelist, known as the Welsh Dickens, stands by the Town Hall. One of Wales's premier theatres, Theatr Clwyd, where both Welsh and English programs are presented, is situated in Shire Hall. The grounds of nearby Leeswood Hall are guarded by a 1726 set of Davies Brothers magnificent wrought iron gates, painted a startling white.

Just outside town the Battle of Maes Garmon, the Field of Germanus was fought, when the native Welsh under Germanus, Bishop of Auxerre, defeated the heathen army of the Picts and Scots who reportedly fled at the resounding echoes of the cry "Hallelujah" bouncing off the nearby rocky hillsides. Also near town is the pleasant park known as the Loggerheads, where an inn displays a sign painted by Richard Wilson. From here, a trail leads up to Moel Fammau, the start of many upland hikes along the top of the Clwydian Range.

At Cilcain, a little village on the eastern slope of the mountain is a 14th century church with a more notable hammer-beam roof that is said to have come from the dissolved abbey at Basingwerk, in the Greenfield Valley.

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