Caerwent is a village and community in Monmouthshire, South Wales. It is located
about five miles west of Chepstow and eleven miles east of Newport, and was founded
by the Romans as the market town of Venta Silurum, an important settlement of the
Brythonic Silures tribe. The modern village is built around the Roman ruins, which
are some of the best-preserved in Europe. It remained prominent through the Roman
era and Early Middle Ages as the site of a road crossing between several important
It was founded by the Romans in 75 as Venta Silurum, a market town for the defeated
Silures tribe. This is confirmed by inscriptions on the "Civitas Silurum" stone,
now on display in the parish church. Large sections of the Roman town walls are still
in place, rising up to 5 metres high in places.
Tintern Abbey located in the village of Tintern, was founded by Walter de Clare,
Lord of Chepstow, on 9 May 1131. Situated on the Welsh bank of the River Wye in Monmouthshire
- which forms the border between Monmouthshire in Wales and Gloucestershire in England
- it was only the second Cistercian foundation in Britain, and the first in Wales.
It is one of the most spectacular ruins in the country and inspired the William Wordsworth.
The present-day remains of Tintern are a mixture of building works covering a 400-year
period between 1136 and 1536. Very little remains of the first buildings; a few sections
of walling are incorporated into later buildings and the two recessed cupboards for
books on the east of the cloisters are from this period. The church of that time
was smaller than the present building and was slightly to the north.
Historic Ruins Dating Back To 1131
The Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is an internationally important
protected landscape straddling the border between England and Wales. It is one of
the most dramatic and scenic landscape areas in southern Britain.
The River Wye is the fifth-longest river in the United Kingdom. The upper part of
the river passes through the settlements of Rhayader, Builth Wells and Hay-on-Wye,
but the area designated as an AONB surrounds only the 72-mile stretch lower down
the river, from just south of the city of Hereford to Chepstow.
This area covers parts of the counties of Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Monmouthshire,
and is recognised in particular for its limestone gorge scenery and dense native
woodlands, as well as its wildlife, archaeological and industrial remains. It is
also historically important as one of the birthplaces of the modern tourism industry.
An Area of Outstanding Beauty
Chepstow Castle is located in Chepstow, Monmouthshire in South Wales, on top of cliffs
overlooking the River Wye, is the oldest surviving stone fortification in Britain.
It was built under the instruction of the Norman Lord William fitzOsbern, soon made
Earl of Hereford, from 1067, and was the southernmost of a chain of castles built
along the English-Welsh border in the Welsh Marches.
The speed with which William the Conqueror committed to the creation of a castle
at Chepstow is testament to its strategic importance. There is no evidence for a
settlement there of any size before the Norman invasion of Wales. However, it was
an important crossing point on the River Wye, a major artery of communications inland
to Monmouth and Hereford.
Chepstow Castle is open to the public, and since 1984 has been in the care of Cadw,
the Welsh government body with the responsibility for protecting, conserving and
promoting the built heritage of Wales. There are special events held often in the
castle and visitors are now able to walk along the battlements and into Martens Tower.
A Fantastic Day Out For The Family
Chepstow Racecourse is a thoroughbred horse racing venue located just outside the
town of Chepstow in Monmouthshire, South Wales, near the southern end of the Wye
Valley which forms the border with England. It is one of three racecourses in Wales,
the others being at Bangor-on-Dee and at Ffos Las in Carmarthenshire, opened in 2009.
The racecourse was opened on 6 August 1926 in the grounds of Piercefield House. The
first race was a two-year-old seller won by Lord Harewood's colt Conca D'Oro, the
7-4 favourite. In 1933, at a two day meeting, Gordon Richards won 11 consecutive
Chepstow races. After the war, and the demise of the nearby Caerleon course, the
Welsh National was transferred to Chepstow.