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Blog The Turn of the Wheel

Influences and Inspirations

Did you know there are only seven stories in the world? Some would claim there are even less, but it has been acknowledged there are seven basic paths that a plot will follow in a story. These are put simply: man against man. man against nature. man against himself. man against God. man against society. […]

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The Turn of the Wheel

Turn of the wheel – a modern pictorial tour of some key settings

Frongoch mine ruins in the 1980s. The Cornish pumping engine dominates, with its distinct yellow Flintshire brick chimney. Behind to the left, is the older pumping engine and the waterwheel/crusher. To the right is the site of the original mill ,

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The Turn of the Wheel

Women workers in Victorian metal mines.

Mining in the UK has been looked on as a male preserve in modern times. The work underground was deemed like many industrial jobs as being being too dirty or difficult for a woman. This is a brief summary of a woman’s role in the Ceredigion metal mines of the 19th century. I recommend those […]

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The Turn of the Wheel

Mining is a hard job, so why did the Ceredigion lead miners think their lot was worse than coal?

‘It’s hard, duw its hard. Harder than they will ever know…. Max Boyce, himself a former coal miner, penned a few poignant songs and poems about the work underground. He does a great job, but then, to fully understand is to do – and most of us have never or will never get close to […]

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The Turn of the Wheel

Turn of the Wheel Pt 3: Some notes about the Cardiganshire lead miner

The life of any miner is hard: Labouring underground in narrow openings from dusk until dawn. yet this was the work for thousands of men in Victorian times. Wales is well known for its coal mines, which dominated life in the South and to a degree, around Wrexham and Rhyl in the north. Metal miners […]

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The Turn of the Wheel

Turn of the Wheel part 2 – Frongoch lead/zinc mine; an introduction to the mine and milling

North Ceredigion and West Montgomeryshire was well-known in Victorian times for its metal mining. The main producing area was bounded by the villages Talybont, Dylife, Van, Cwmystwyth and Pontrhydfendigaid. The produce was ore in the form of galena (lead sulphide) and zinc blende (zinc sulphide). Silver was found in the lead ore. Copper ore – […]

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The Turn of the Wheel

Turn of the Wheel background pt1: Frongoch lead/zinc mine

In the hinterlands of North Ceredigion lie many ruins of a long lost industry. The crumbling grey walls of buildings with the occasional large mounds of grey stone. Small man-made lakes and miles and miles of water channels in the hillsides, all point to a part reclaimed industrial landscape. These are testament to a concerted […]

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The Turn of the Wheel

The Turn of the Wheel book on sale

A quick update, that my latest novel, ‘The Turn of the Wheel’ is due for official release on January 31st. The first of the novels charting the story of Owain Thomas, a young lead miner at the Frongoch lead mine, in Mid Wales. Owain is the father of Dafydd, the protagonist in the railway novels. […]

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The Turn of the Wheel

The Turn of the Wheel

I am very pleased to announce the release of my latest novel on January 31st. The Turn of the Wheel is set in a small lead mining community, near Pontrhydygroes, about 12 miles east of Aberystwyth in the Ystwyth Valley. The story is that of Owain Thomas and begins with his first day underground at […]