Elan Valley During World War I and II

In September 1903 The Royal Artillery used the hills above Cwmdauddwr for training. Six heavy guns were pulled to the top of Penrhiwen by horses. During the two weeks of firing of heavy ordnance farmhouses of Hirnant, Glanhirin and Troedrhiwdrain were evacuated.
In 1908 firing with six inch howitzers began, with firing shell weighing 280lb. On 5th August 1908 three batteries were in operation simultaneously firing with large nine inch howitzer guns, 120 rounds were fired at distances ranging from 2,500 to 5,000 yards.
In 1910 training of long range (6 miles) gun fire practice with star shells took place at night using 6 Inch and 9.45 Inch howitzers. During day firing at a range of 9 miles took place. Craters, mounds and Shrapnel left by the shells can still be found on Esgair Rhiwlan, Esgair Cywion and Esgair Crawnllwyn.
After the declaration of war on 4th August 1914 troops and Artillery were withdrawn from the Elan Valley and headed out to France.
To be continued

Birmingham Water Guard Special Constables

During World War I, in 1917 it was decided that the Water Supply Aqueduct would need protecting over it's 75 mile length. The Elan Valley also needed protection. 2 West Midland officers and 25 Special Constables were on duty in the Elan Valley and Maintained watch over the Foel Tower. The Birmingham Water Guard Medal was insituted on 5th December 1918 and 870 Special Constables were presented with the award. Up to 700 of the volunteers attended Birmingham Town Hall on 10th January 1919 to receive the medal. Information from Birmingham Mail.
Photos courtesy of Dennis Moore.



Craig Cnwch Shelter

Remains of World War II look out post on Craig Cnwch, Elan Valley, 3m x 2m
Map Ref SN92908 64176


Pillbox 1

Pillbox 1 over looking the Foel Tower
Map Ref SN


Pillbox 2

Pillbox 2 over looking the Foel Tower
Map Ref SN


Pillbox 3

Pillbox 3 over looking Garreg Ddu Dam and the Foel Tower
Map Ref SN


Gamriw Cairn IV

Gamriw Cairn IV. A large cairn, been disturbed with a
Home Guard shelter built into the centre.
Photo taken by Vic Pardoe
Map Ref SN9440 6188


Cefn Llanfadog Shelter

Remains of a World War II out look post on Cefn Llanfadog
Map Ref SN92807 65184


Esgair Rhiwlan Shell

Remains of one of the shells fired from one if the 6inch guns. The shell was found on Esgair Rhiwlan and is now at Rhayader Museum
Map Ref SN


The Mother

9 inch Howitzer 'The Mother' this one was one of the guns tested up the Elan Valley, also used in World War I and brought back and is now on display at the Imperial War Museum, London.



Firing Range

One of the square areas where it may once been the testing site of the large guns just before and during World War I.


Firing Range

One of the square areas where it may once been the testing site of the large guns just before and during World War I.


Firing Range

One of the square areas where it may once been the testing site of the large guns just before and during World War I.


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