Planet 234

Ioan Lord
Land of Lead: The Story of Four Generations of a North Ceredigion Family
by Brian Davies

by Brian Davies

Y Lolfa, £9.99

In late January 2020, a few friends and I were standing about 750 feet below the earth’s surface, having abseiled down a disused mine shaft on a rope near Ysbyty Ystwyth, Ceredigion. After digging our way through a collapse of boulders which barred our way forwards, we found ourselves able to clamber through a gap and into a length of passage which had not been seen for nearly 140 years. The last miners who lived in Ysbyty Ystwyth and Ffair Rhos had been forced out of work during the 1880s, leaving this passage abandoned and unseen since that time. However, all of their tools remained propped against the wall, as well as their hobnail-boot-prints in the mud on the floor which were as clear as if they had been made less than an hour ago. Time moves slowly in these lonely, subterranean places, and it is the urge to protect, document and conserve the memories of these people which attracts me to them.

Sign in to read more
Subscribe here