DISTANCE/DURATION: 4.8 miles (7.7 km) 2 hours.
PUBLIC TRANSPORT: Service bus Rosebush 344/345.
CHARACTER: Forest track, moorland, livestock.
LOOK OUT FOR: Foel Cwmcerwyn highest point in Pembrokeshire and Rosebush slate quarries.
Slate was quarried in a small way at Rosebush’s Bellstone Quarry from the 1820s, but the Victorian housebuilding boom prompted huge demand for roofing slate and slabs and attracted new investment into this area of Pembrokeshire.
The now flooded Rosebush Quarry was opened in 1842 and the two neighbouring quarries went into full production during the last 30 years of the 19th century.
At the peak of the boom years the quarries employed 100 men. Many lived in the 26 cottages of Rosebush Terrace, built to house the quarrymen and their families.
To transport the slate a railway was opened in the 1870s linking the quarry with the main London line to the south. But the slate boom was short lived and both quarries had gone out of business by 1908.
When the market for slate declined the quarry owners tried to sell Rosebush as a holiday resort, publicising the benefits of the Preseli air and the facilities on offer at the corrugated-iron Prescelly Hotel.
Both quarries and the railway are defunct but the hotel remains, now renamed Tafarn Sinc.
Beyond the village and the old quarries the route joins the Golden Road, the ancient path that follows the line of the Preseli’s high ground. Foel Cwmcerwyn’s summit is the highest point in the National Park, at 536m (1,757ft).
The Golden Road is thought to date back 5,000 years to the Neolithic period.
Geraint Harries, North Sector Senior Ranger for Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority, says: “The views from Foel Cwmcerwyn can be quite something on a clear day. You overlook the whole of Dyfed and as far as Devon and Ireland.”
Find this Walk
Grid ref: SN075294
- Enjoy the countryside and respect its life and work
- Guard against all risk of fire
- Leave gates and property as you find them
- Keep your dogs under close control
- Keep to public paths across farmland
- Take your litter home
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