Sunday, 27 April 2014

Wrexham, North Wales

Town centre    GJC_002628 (1)_edited

My next series of posts takes me back literally, to North Wales in 2011 and there's a couple of reasons why I want to dig into the past and one of those reasons will be obvious at the conclusion of this mini series.
On a side note and in keeping with the other blog theme of life, the lessons I learnt today were just as confusing as why I wanted to publish this post ... haha ... Getting conflicting advice from various people  "Learn from the past, not live in it" ... and ... "Sometimes you have to step into the past to fix your present, otherwise you won't have a future".

Sometimes I even surprise myself of what I post as Wrexham is not an obvious destination and I wrestled with the idea of posting this. There are some gems in the town and it would be a shame not to display them.
I opted for a 1 hour lunch break en route to Mid / North Wales instead of my usual Chester car stop. This was my first ever visit here so it was an extensive 30 minutes exploration fitted in ... around a Town square sandwich !! No doubt I've put my footprint or stamp on the images making it attractive to Google image hunters ! On the other hand, regular readers will know by the length and ending of this post what I secretly thought of the place !

Wrexham, the largest town in North Wales and sitting near the English border, has been the scene of early historic skirmishes (King Edward I  v  Madog ap Llywelyn in 1294) although due to its location not near a river, the epicentre shifted later to the east at Holt. During the 18th century the town became famous for its leather industry and the later Industrial Revolution.

St Giles Church   GJC_002626 (1)_edited
St Giles Church Tower
   The 16th century St Giles church Tower, is unofficially known as one of the seven wonders of North Wales. Although I wouldn't pay much attention to that as it came from an old rhyme possibly by an early English tourist !!  ... who took artistic license in poetry  ... steeple ... yeah right !!

         Pistyll Rhaeadr and Wrexham Steeple,
         Snowdon's mountain without its people,  (that'll be right as well ... haha)
         Overton yew trees, St Winefride's well,
         Llangollen bridge and Gresford bells.

Temple Row     GJC_002670
... situated in aptly named "Temple Row"

General Market    GJC_002632
General Market Hall
Wrexham is blessed with markets to the point that I wasn't sure which one was which !!! ...

General Market    GJC_002663_edited-1.jpg

... The People's market used to be the vegetable market, The Butcher's market that used to have a Corn Exchange and now has more than just meat on sale. The open air market that used to sell ... err ... cattle but has become a general market ...

General Market   GJC_002637

... and lastly ... a general market that sells vegetables outside !!! Confused ? ... you will be !

Former library    GJC_ 002644_edited.jpeg
Library (1906 - 1973) or rather ... Lunchtime !
The former Wrexham Library sits on the edge of Queens square waiting for the set up of the monday morning outdoor market ... while watching me eat a sandwich on the other side of the square.

                            Town centre   GJC_002643_edited

In my opinion, the centre piece building of the shopping centre, shown in the title image, is not the historic leather industry but .... Boots. ! ... sorry :-)

Horse and Jockey    GJC_002649

The 16th century Horse and Jockey pub is thought to be the oldest building in the town centre. It was originally an open large room dwelling called a hall house that was later converted into three cottages. One was used as accommodation for travellers and another was used as a Beer House. In 1868 all three buildings were converted into one public house. The name was chosen as a result of the successes of a jockey called Fred Archer at a nearby racecourse.

Window box   GJC_002655
Window box
One of the towns industries was the brewing of Wrexham Lager that started in the 19th century by German immigrants. The large export market that subsequently developed was lost during and after World War II resulting in problems and debts. There was further interest later but mergers to larger brewers and a final transfer away to a Yorkshire Brewery ended production in 2002. Wrexham Lager was recreated however in 2011 and is popular locally.

                            Horse and Jockey    GJC_002647

The connection between the Wrexham Lager company and The Horse and Jockey was that the pub was bought by the company in 1938 and saved the building from collapsing.

Lastly on the way back to the car, I thought I was in for a treat with another Welsh wonder ...

Overton Arcade   GJC_002665
Overton the Welsh wonder
... sadly not although photographically interesting ... maybe I had to walk a little further to find a Yew Tree.

Overton Arcade    GJC_002666
The walk back to the car ... and my destination

Best get to work on the next post straight away then !


  1. I have never thought Wrexham was half as attractive as you have managed to make it. This was an excellent look round.

  2. Yet another location I would love to visit. What a picturesque place.

  3. Black and White villages and church towers - always two of my favorite subjects. We were 30 minutes from Wrexham and didn't get there. I know I've complained about this before, but England has far too many interesting places to see and there's never enough time to see them all. Great post, J.

  4. I have often passed by Wrexham on my travels (to Chester). I had no idea it was such an architectural wonder!

    Thank you for your pictorial incite into the town :-)

  5. This was a very interesting break on your way, J, why should you be bothered by the fact that it was a break, not a destination... I'm pleased you posted it. Those are interesting buildings and the Overton Arcade seems quite unusual, I like it.

  6. The window box is enchanting! That kind of roofs, which I discovered in England the firt time, are very photogenic. I encountered them recently on the meru's in Bali.


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