Pistyll Rhaeadr and Wrexham steeple,
Snowdon's mountain without its people,
Overton yew trees, St Winefride wells,
Llangollen bridge and Gresford bells.
This time last month I found myself in a pub in Wrexham with DTal and several of his Welsh friends. Having been outed as English, I felt it best to keep the conversation centred on the merits of Wales, and so I came to learn of its seven wonders. Despite my previous ignorance, it turned out that I'd managed to see two of them by accident during my trip: our drinking establishment was a stone's throw from St Giles', and I'd wandered over the Llangollen bridge earlier in the day.
In case the rhyme isn't sufficient guidance, the wonders are:
- The 240ft waterfall Pistyll Rhaedr, known as "the hidden pearl of Wales".
- St Giles' Church in Wrexham, or more precisely its 16th century tower (spireless, so not technically a steeple).
- Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales (not sure why the poem objects to its people!)
- The ancient yew trees in the churchyard of St Marys', Overton.
- St Winefride's Well, a holy well in, well, Holywell.
- The Llangollen Bridge, the site of the first stone bridge across the River Dee.
- The bells of All Saints' church, Gresford.
The verse apparently dates from the 18th century, although the author is unknown, and a more geographically accurate description would be the seven wonders of North Wales. Of course, opinions differ as to which are Wales' finest landmarks: surely there must be something interesting in the south!