People and the Landscape 2

Middle Ages to the Twentieth Century

historic-sitesBy the late 12th century, extensive pastures were being grazed by herds of cattle and large flocks of sheep which provided the Cistercian abbey at Strata Florida with its principal income.

Much of the area continued to be sparsely populated throughout most of the year, being exploited during the summer months by small dairy farms which began to encroach upon the margins of the uplands in the later mediaeval period, by peat cutting for fuel, by a handful of small lead and zinc mines and stone quarries and by several drovers’ roads taking cattle to markets in the English Midlands, all at their heyday in the 18th and 19th centuries.

One-third of the area of the Cambrian Mountains is registered in the historic landscape register for Wales (Register of Landscapes of Special Historic Interest in Wales, Part 2.2: Landscapes of Special Historic Interest CCW/Cadw/ICOMOS UK 1998 ISBN 1857601874). In addition, the Cambrian Mountains contain 80 individual Scheduled Ancient Monuments.