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From the Last to the First: Ffynnon Beuno Cave, Tremeirchion April 2009

April 7, 2014

A few years ago we spent a few days in North Wales, to visit a friend. One evening we went on a little jaunt to find a cave marked on the OS map of the Vale of Clwyd/Dyffryn Clwyd, a cave shown a mile north west of the ancient farmstead of Bâch-y-graig.

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At the time, I had no idea what the name of the cave was. It was only tonight that I found out that it is the Ffynnon Beuno Cave, named after the nearby holy well dedicated to St Beuno. More information here.

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I’ve learnt from this site that since these pictures were taken there have been some seasons of archaeological excavation. This has led to the identification of the caves as the most northerly and one of only three such sites in Britain to contain artefacts associated with the last northern European Neanderthals prior to their extinction (40,000-42’000 BP) as well as the first Homo Sapiens to occupy Europe (37,000-36,000 BP). (“Last Neanderthals, First Humans: Excavations at Ffynnon Beuno Cave 2011” by Chantal Conneller and Rob Dinnis (2012), Archaeology in Wales Vol.51, pp. 23-26.). For this reason, it is now considered a site of international importance. (Wales).

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The last picture shows the view down the valley towards Dyffryn Clwyd, with the caves of Ffynnon Beuno and Cae Gwyn (‘White Field’, see here) towards the right.

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