the junction I smothered my conscience: 'Come on, my children, let's go through Rhiwabon, please!' Without so much as a murmur, the vehicle was turned around. But I couldn't help blushing and feeling just a little ashamed and repentant as we came into Rhiwabon at seeing the lady (for it was she who was at the wheel) struggling to take the nasty corners near the station. I learned a lesson, and I shan't be so impudent again. That's what collecting for the sake of collecting does to you. Yet, at its very worst, dear reader, is not my collecting habit just as respectable as your hobby? If you can collect First Editions (completely worthless things, if I may say so), or else old jugs, why can't I collect roads?
Y Denor ( 19, 1940),
Casglu Ffyrdd ( Hughes a'i Fab, 1956)
Iorwerth C. Peate
The last week of June 1940 was a sad one for me, a week of seeing a part of the Welshness of Wales being torn up by its roots and the destruction of a gentle society deep in the heart of the countryside. I am speaking of Epynt and Mynydd Bwlch-y-groes, a district now lost to Wales, at least for the time being. It runs from the vicinity of Llywel and Pont Senni in the south to beyond Pentre Dolau Honddu and the southern side of Llangamarch in the north.
Epynt and Mynydd Bwlch-y-groes are uplands of special significance. They are mostly Old Red Sandstone — or rather wholly so, except for the northern and western slopes. This rich, red soil extends from the south-east to the highest ridge of the uplands. One of the consequences of this geological pattern is the exceptional fertility of the land. Although the uplands reach a height of 1,500 feet, they are worked in places right to their tops. And because of the nature of the soil, and its fertility, whoever goes up to the far ends of the valleys has the feeling that he is on the rich lands of Herefordshire. I was there in June, the sun hot and the breeze gentle: the first time the hawthorn cast a white mantle over everything, the second time the