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The Memorial Pinnacle of Blaenau Ffestiniog Photos: Big G





Upon visiting Blaenau town centre our intrepid explorer, Big G, is positively mesmerised at what he finds:

Dear NWB readers,
Extraordinary - but there it is; pride of place; this singular spike. As it sprouts edgily from the paving, it is hard to tell whether it pre-dates the town as some pagan affair, or commemorates its industrial activities. (A plaque indicates the latter).

As the first such development, it has been copied rather weirdly with some slatey stacks; these were clearly not made with recreation in mind but are merely there to add to the orchestrated gloom.

As an item for recreation our pillar seems terribly flawed or... a bit ahead if its time, as it has few holds and would require laybacking manoeuvres with an unrealistically positive approach.
Remarkably; as if the thing wasn’t desperate enough; the plinth has a pipe passing to its summit from which a dribble of water sporadically issues, to... ‘rain on the parade’ of budding ascentionists.
It is either the worst fountain ever, or a radical new approach to adversity-facilitation; enhancing the climbing challenge.

If it looks to you like it might be too easy, one could wait for a windy day, a bit of ice, snow or some heckling from decent-minded people.
One option might be to approach the thing late at night with a couple of alcoholic beverages under ones belt; this would make the moves flow and give a reduced sense of pain on descent to the non-ergonomic paving below.

In truth the slate pillar is there to commemorate a grim past for the people of the town (Mind you; it is hard to imagine what old quarrymen would less prefer to see - than a chunk of rock!) Next to it, a flash bike shop sits a little strangely. Let us wish the place well on its future endeavours, unimaginable as they would have been ten or twenty years ago.

Be strong...or pretend
Love, Big G

Further reading:

Some of the caverns in this rugged landscape were hollowed out with a bit of light hearted fun in mind. On completion they were decked out with trampolines the size of tennis courts.

Down-hill biking
The quarry inclines were constructed with a view to subsequent employment as exciting descents for cyclists.
The cyclists start in town, getting into a wagon which takes them to the top of the mountain, whereupon they descend as fast as possible. This harmless activity usually culminates in a visit to such local amenities as Bangor A and E unit. (The keen ones are allowed rides on the air ambulance.)

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