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Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Then and Now - Slate-trade Hulks at Caernarvon

It began with a public inquiry about imagery for Caernarvon Castle, but it triggered a visual memory with Cheryl Griffiths, the Royal Commission’s longest serving member of staff, of historic photographs she had seen in the Industrial Archaeology Collections.

This wonderful series of images shows the former Slate Quay on the River Seiont. The old landing point for the Castle was developed around 1817. With the coming of the Nantlle Railway in 1825-8, which brought slate from various quarries to the harbour, the mouth of the Seiont was turned into an even busier place.

Slate Quay Caernarfon, DI2013_0093.
Maritime Officer, Deanna Groom, set out to try and recreate the view - ‘I was actually too far south along the bank... and there they were. Two really quite substantial wooden vessels, which I feel certain must have been engaged in the slate trade at sometime. The Harbour Master at Caernarvon, Richard Jones, believes that the vessel on the western bank was called the LILLY, but we’d love to hear from local people who may know more about them’.

What do you know about these vessels?
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