Ancient Monuments

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Ffynnon Angoeron Holy Well

A Scheduled Monument in Goetre Fawr, Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

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Latitude: 51.7409 / 51°44'27"N

Longitude: -3.0187 / 3°1'7"W

OS Eastings: 329760

OS Northings: 205184

OS Grid: SO297051

Mapcode National: GBR J4.1KDT

Mapcode Global: VH79L.MHJR

Entry Name: Ffynnon Angoeron Holy Well

Scheduled Date: 14 May 2019

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 4400

Cadw Legacy ID: MM358

County: Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

Community: Goetre Fawr

Traditional County: Monmouthshire


The monument comprises a holy well, known as Ffynnon Angoeron (the freezing or very cold well). It is a covered spring of probable medieval date. It is located low within a deep and narrow stream valley that emerges from the eastern slopes of Mynydd Garn Wen and is set into the base of a steep, south-facing bank above the stony bed of the stream, which its waters join a few metres to the east. The well is recessed into the southern end of a crudely built wall of undressed Old Red Sandstone and conglomerate blocks, forming a revetment to the uphill slope. The chamber opening measures 2.4m in length by 1.2m in height. The chamber is water-filled and is constructed of squared and finely jointed sandstone blocks, extending 0.75m back from the opening, which is 0.64m wide and 0.8m high. A single large, flat slab forms the roof, the rear of which is crossed by the rocky path along the valley. Immediately outside the chamber a pair of ruinous, boulder walls abut the revetment to define an irregular curving forecourt or pool 1.5m in diameter with a floor of flat slabs through which the spring water runs down to the stream. Tradition holds that the well had healing properties and when reportedly cleaned out in the 1890s, bent pins, coins and buttons were found. Coins were visible when visited and the silts within the well may retain similar offerings. Ffynnon Angoeron is difficult to date due to its vernacular construction but it appears to be undisturbed and there is no reason to doubt that the elements of the present structure date back to the medieval period.

The monument is of national importance as a well-preserved example of a medieval or early post-medieval well with medicinal or religious associations. It has the potential to enhance our knowledge of contemporary religious practices and of folk rituals and customs. It shares group value with a series of other settlement and water management features further up the same valley to the west including a dam and a pair of platform buildings.

The scheduled area comprises the remains described above and an area around them within which related evidence might be expected to survive. It is rectangular in shape on plan and measures 15m east-west by 10m transversely.

Source: Cadw

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