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Towns and Villages - Continued
Newcastle Emlyn is a town straddling the border of the counties of Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire in west Wales (though officially it is in Carmarthenshire) and lying on the River Teifi.
Newcastle Emlyn and Adpar are two adjacent communities in the Teifi Valley West Wales sitting either side of the River Teifi.
To the North is Adpar in the County of Ceredigion, to the South, Newcastle Emlyn in the County of Carmarthenshire.
Newcastle Emlyn and Adpar form a bustling market town community which grew up around a crossing point over the River Teifi, its swooping meanders made the site a natural defensive position first built on by the Normans.
Today, although the castle is in ruins, the town is lively and attractive and its people welcoming.
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At the heart of Pontrhydfendigaid - 'the bridge of the blessed ford' (known locally as ‘Bont’) is a narrow hump backed bridge across the river Teifi, whose source is about 5 miles away in the hills, at Teifi Pools.
The village is close to the 12th century monastery ruins of Strata Florida, once one of Europe’s most significant Cistercian monasteries and where archaeological digs are now revealing a much bigger site than originally imagined.
It is reputedly the burial site of Dafydd ap Gwilym, one of the great medieval Welsh poets.
Caradog Jones, the first Welshman to reach the summit of Mount Everest hails from Pontrhydfendigaid.
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An historic market town, Tregaron is today a centre for ‘Trotian’ - horse trotting and carriage racing. The annual summer event attracts competitors from all over the UK and Ireland. It is also the home of the Welsh Gold Centre selling Celtic inspired designs.
Tregaron was a strategic point for drovers taking animals from West Wales to markets in England. Before railways, cattle were brought to Tregaron from many points in West Wales and then driven overland on the drovers roads through the Cambrian Mountains to markets in Hereford, London and even as far as Kent.The stunning Tregaron - Abergwesyn mountain road was originally the first stage of the drover's route.
It is said that around 30,000 cattle per year went through Tregaron and such was the trading importance of the town that the ‘Black Sheep’ Aberystwyth and Tregaron Bank was opened in 1810 to issue its own bank notes.
The number of black sheep (y defaid du) engraved on the banknotes indicated the number of pounds (1, 2, 10 etc). Original bank notes can be seen at Ceredigion Museum.
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