The Mouth of the Monnow

On the way back from Brecon we stopped off at Monmouth for a bit of a shufty and see what’s what.

Nice place, named after the Monnow river, which joins the Wye river on the edge of town. It’s well known for both the Wye bridge and Monnow bridge. The Monnow bridge is the stand out of the two due to the oldest fortified medieval bridge in Britain still being part of it’s structure. It didn’t get a roof until 1700, so that gives you a clue. It’s pretty impressive.

In fact, the town is full of historical pride, and rightly so. A lot has gone on here. Here’s a snippet of what we picked up while we were here.

  • First wooden castle was built around 1066 and later rebuilt in stone.
  • The oldest parts of town are up the hill, because the lower part is prone to flooding
  • Geoffrey of Monmouth pedalled some of the first Fake News in 1139, when he wrote the “History of the Kings of Britain” somewhat inacurately
  • The Birthplace of Henry V in 1387 – he was just plain Henry of Monmouth until the Battle of Agincourt
  • Horatio Nelson ( visited the town in 1802 and there’s a museum in his name
  • and C.S.Rolls (of Rolls Royce fame)

We chose ‘The Punch House’ for lunch at the top of the high street. It was quiet (I suppose it wasn’t quite midday on a Sunday) and we weren’t looking for a Sunday roast, just something light. For the end of our Welsh weekend, what better than a traditional Welsh Rarebit. When I was a kid, I always thought this was rabbit, but it’s basically cheese on toast with a poached egg. Anyway – it was wonderful. Just what we needed.

Worth a visit if you’re passing.

Until next time

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