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Limekilns Trail - Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal

Three historic limekilns along the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal in South Wales have been restored through the financial support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and Brecon Beacons Trust. A key part of the project was to engage with volunteers and support them in gaining new skills in traditional stone masonry repairs like lime mortar pointing.

Restored Lime Kilns at Watton

A key part of the project was to engage with volunteers and support them in gaining new skills in traditional stone masonry repairs such as lime mortar pointing.

The limekilns at Watton Llangattock and Goytre played a vital role in Wales' industrial history, being used to produce lime mortar for agricultural use and the construction trade. The raw materials of coal and limestone were brought to the kilns by canal boat and the finished product, burnt lime, was then transported by cart to local farms and by horse drawn tramway as far away as Hay-on-Wye and Kington.

The project had a focus around the conservation of two Grade II listed limekilns at Watton and Goytre, and one Grade II* listed at Llangattock. These kilns remain some of the best preserved kilns still largely accessible by the public in the area, each requiring differing degrees of conservation attention. The works were delivered by a combination of specialist contractor and volunteer support with training provided as part of the project package. Once complete the limekiln trail will complement the canoe, history and food trails already developed in partnership along the canal with Natural Resources Wales and Brecon Beacons National Park.

As you can see from the video, this project was made possible by £60,700 funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund and £30,000 from the Brecon Beacons Trust, the project also included the creation of an interpretation trail, which will give visitors to the waterway an insight into its industrial heritage. The project was nominated for an award at this year's Living Waterways Awards.

In partnership with Arts Alive Wales and Peak Art, two Contemporary artists hosted a demonstration of the lighting of one of the kilns at Llangattock.

See image below showing the new picnic area at the top of the Llangattock lime kilns. These benches were designed to reflect how a tram car would have looked, as these were used to get the raw materials to site by running across the top of the kilns where the benches now sit.

New picnic area at top of Llangattock lime kilns

Last Edited: 15 August 2022

photo of a location on the canals
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