Friday, 28 February 2014

The Davies Gates

The exceptional thing about the North Wales landscape is undoubtedly its natural beauty. However, the more I travel and read about North Wales, the more I realise the impact of man in taming the landscape, and I've written many blogs about houses and canals and roads and field systems. But recently I've become more aware of the contribution made by exceptional individuals - the founding Celtic saints, Thomas Telford, the Wynn Family etc, and not to mention Edward the First.

Last week I visited Chirk and came across these wonderful gates, and have been reading up about them. These were made by the Davies Family who were active in the 18th Century. They were smiths, experts in wrought iron. They worked in Croesfoel forge in Bursham near Wrexham. They had links with French smiths and Robert Bakewell of Derby. Much of their work survives in the great houses around the borders, the work at Leeswood Hall Flintshire, and these at Chirk being amongst the best. There are many others and I shall look out for them from now on.

The Davies' work at Chirk Castle. Not bad for a garden gate! They were painted black during the war, but have recently been restored to their original colours.

Davies wrought iron gates at Hanmer church.

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