The slate mines of Gwynedd that ‘roofed the 19th-century world’ are this year’s British nominee
Picture: Anglesey Barracks, Dinorwig Slate Quarry, by Denis Egan, Creative Commons
Those who have been to north-west Wales will have seen the huge slate quarries that scar the hillsides. The slate from here was once transported across Britain, Europe, the US and Australia and is described as having ‘roofed the 19th-century world’.
This year, the region in Gwynedd is Britain’s nomination for Unesco World Heritage status – a title that would bring huge global recognition.
The UK Government can nominate one site each year. Heritage minister Michael Ellis says this part of Gwynedd is very important. “Its vast quarries and mines have not only shaped the countryside of the region but also countless buildings across the UK and the world.”
We won’t know if the application’s successful until 2021, but if it is then it’ll join Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, the 13th-century castles built by King Edward I, and Blaenavon industrial landscape, as Wales’ only Unesco World Heritage sites.
The UK has 31 such sites in total, including the Lake District and the Tower of London.
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