Blog Entries by Time Travellers

Old Blue Stockings

June 1646

To appease my desire to visit somewhere more scarier we decided to visit Colonel Salesbury (AKA Old Blue Stockings) who is holding a siege at Denbigh Castle! Tesni was a bit worried that this was a dangerous thing to do but I managed to convince her that we could escape at any time in our time machine! We landed in the courtyard and, wow, what a noise! The castle was in the middle of being bombarded by cannons from the outside.

At that point I wasn’t so sure that we had made a good decision in going there! We walked cautiously up some steps where we were once again grabbed unceremoniously by some soldiers and dragged to the dungeons for questioning! Are you spies? One soldier barked at us, who do you work for? shouted another, eyeing our clothes suspiciously. We tell them our story and I think they were so battle weary from all the bombardment from the Cromwellians that they did not question us too much but to stop them pointing their swords at us I promised that we could get them another cannon.

(more…)

Bishop William Morgan

March 1588

Something I’ve always wanted to visit was the Spanish armada but I think Tesni had been messing about with the dials because when I tried to key in the time sequence we ended up in a much different place. Tesni pretended she didn’t know what had gone wrong but I knew the armada was the last place she wanted to go. Too dangerous, she would say. That’s why I wanna go! I would tell her but, never mind.

Where were we then? Tesni explained that we seemed to have landed in St Asaph, 1588. Hang on, I said, isn’t this the year Bishop William Morgan first translated the bible into Welsh. Suddenly I had forgotten about the Spanish war ships. We just had to meet this historic Welshman!

After wandering around the town for a while we found ourselves outside a library. Just then we noticed that Seren the cat was rubbing herself against our ankles. We figured that she must have sneaked into the time Machine again! She is a naughty cat! Off she ran ahead of us through a crack in the Library door. We followed her through the big wooden doors and into the library’s quiet interior.

(more…)

Katheryn of Berain

February 1570

Another malfunction on the dial and we landed in the middle of the countryside.

We noticed a grand house built of bricks nearby which, by the look of it, belonged to someone very important. We decided to take a closer look. We had a peek through one of the windows and saw lots of children running around a room playing and screaming and fighting. It looks like a party, said Tesni, except they don’t seem to be having much fun! She had a point! The younger ones looked irritable and some were crying. In the middle of all this sat a very harassed looking woman. Her black dress seemed to fit her mood as restless children pulled her arm, tugged her skirt and ruffled her head dress.

(more…)

Robert Jones. Priest

October 1520

Tesni has been studying a little bit about holy wells in school and I remember my mum showing me a book called Sacred Places which mentioned these wells in Denbighshire and on one Sunday in the summer we visited one in Llanrhaeadr-yng-Nghinmeirch

We had Sunday lunch in the pub near by then went for a walk behind the Church of St. Dyfnog. It was a magical place but long forgotten. Ivy and moss had taken over where people would have once sat and talked, living out their lives hundreds of years ago like all the customers in the noisy pub we had just left. It would be great to see what this would have been like in its heyday.

When back in the time machine we set the dial to c1520 and held on tight! The machine landed us in some thorn bushes. Ouch, ouch, OOOUUCH!!!, we tried to keep our voices down as we clambered out of the machine because we could hear voices nearby. Just ahead of us we saw a motley selection of people queuing to bathe in a much cleaner looking well than I remember from our trip back in our own time and there wasn’t half as much moss. We noticed some of the people looking very ill indeed. Many had walking sticks and crude looking crutches made from thick branches and twine. Some invalids were even being carried by other people, possibly friends or relatives. These people must have believed the well could cure them because, from their accents, I could tell they had come from far and wide to visit this holy place.

(more…)

Non Thomas. washer woman at Nant Clwyd

July 1450

Because we go to Ruthin quite often we thought it would be pretty cool to see what the place was like over six hundred years ago! I saw a newspaper article a while back about Nant Clwyd House in the chronicle that said it had been restored to its former medieval glory with a European grant. But we wanted to see for ourselves, you know, the real Mc Coy, so we hopped into the time machine and dialed the year 1475 into the navi-computer.

A whoosh of smoke and a stream of stars and all of a sudden we found ourselves in a field just behind the town square. The first thing we noticed was how overwhelmingly noisy it was, and the smell, uurgh!!!, rotten fruit and veg mixed with steaming farm animal dung. Was this the right place? Ruthin then was a completely different place to the one I visited back in the future. Never the less, Tesni and I decided to hang out on the square for a bit.

It seemed, by all the people shouting and jostling about the square, that it was market day. Suddenly, from out of the chaos, we saw a chicken running as fast as its busy feet could carry it; between the shoppers legs and across the market place. A flustered young girl was hot on its heels and without stopping to think I ran after to help her catch the runaway poultry. After a quick rush I managed to get close enough to dive on the chicken (with a bit of a rugby tackle manoeuvre that I had seen in the six nations) and proudly presented it to the girl. (more…)

Owain Glyndwr

September 1400

Tesni decided maybe it is best not to mess with history and gives up on going back to Dinas Bran so I finally got my own way! We arrived in September 1400. Just when Owain Glyndwr was rallying his troops ready for battle with Lord Grey of Ruthin. It was so exciting!

We pushed our way up to the front to get a better view and cheered as loudly as we could! We impressed Owain with our enthusiasm so much that he said we should be his mascots. He even allowed us to carry the flag which would lead them into battle as long as we promise to disappear before things get really dangerous!

Owain Glyndwr

Iolo Goch

August 1370

After hearing about what happened at Dinas Brans Tesni wanted to get back and warn Gruffudd ap Madoc of the English army’s maneuvers. Although I saw where she was coming from I was still dying to visit the 1400 to see my hero Owain Glyndwr. You can’t change history! I told her. But all those lives gone to waste, we can help them, she argued, we were both getting cross by this point but neither of us would back down.

We ended up fighting near the time machine and Tesni pushed me over and my head hit the centuary-dial. The last thing I noticed before the time machine started up was the year 1370 displayed on the dashboard screen.

(more…)

Prince Gruffudd ap Madog

May 1260

This time we set the timer to visit Dinas Bran as we have studied this in school and wanted what it was like when it was new and not an old ruin.

We got the dates slightly mixed up and went back to when the Castle was just being built. We ended up having to hide our time machine and spent the night in the town of Llangollen which was nearby. How different it is from the place we know today. There was no proper road back then, just dirt tracks, and the houses looked pretty rough. I couldn’t believe my favourite ice cream shop wasn’t there! What was there to do?

With no hotels or B&B’s to stay at we ended up spending a very uncomfortable night in a hay barn. In the morning we were awoken by soldiers! Once again we were captured and taken to a camp. Just our luck!

On the way there I could over hear a soldier complaining about the lack of good stone to build Dinas Bran with. I’m starting to get used to this, I said to Tesni. When we arrived at the camp the main guard accused us of being witches and, remembering what they did to people they thought were witches back then, I quickly told them that we were from far away and could maybe help them build the castle in some way. He wanted to know how we could help. I must admit I hadn’t thought that one through so I struggled to answer him. (more…)

Morris the Monk

April 1203

Our next journey we landed in a peaceful valley but Tesni’s complaining that she’s hungry. I tell her to shut up cos we’d only just eaten but even my mouth started to water when I caught a whiff of cooking coming from somewhere nearby.

Up there, said Tesni pointing down a nearby path. It wasn’t long before we came to a beautiful garden. The ornaments and plant were all set out in a tidy fashion and there was this lovely feeling of calm. A small herb patch filled the air with beautiful smells. Then we hear this lovely music coming from a nearby building.

Tesni explained it must be an Abbey and we made our way over to it. Sitting outside under an archway we see this Monk busy at work on some manuscript. He was so absorbed in his work that he did not hear us. When we get closer we hear him moaning under his breath. It was then that he turned round and saw us approaching.

(more…)

Idris & Haf

June 1150

Once the machine was back in our hands we couldn’t wait to try the dial again. We ended up in a meadow on a beautiful day! We played tig for a bit until that got boring and we decided to go and investigate some smoke we could see rising from a field in the distance.

When we got nearer we saw an elderly gentleman hunched over his very ill looking sheep. We went over to talk to him. He said his name was Idris. We got chatting about his life and stuff. It was really interesting to find out how people lived back then!

He explained to us how he and his wife, Haf, lost all their children when they were babies and because of this, he cherishes his sheep almost like they were his own children and doesn’t want to loose them as well. After all, back then the sheep you kept were the clothes you wore and the meat you had for dinner. No supermarkets! We felt so sorry for him and his wife we thought we’d try and help them.

(more…)

Robert of Rhuddlan

November 1070

Neither Tesni or I had ever time traveled before so neither of us had any idea what to expect. When the machine finally stopped we found ourselves in the middle of a forest, but where was this forest, and when?!?

We jumped from the time machine to take a look around. There was this banging like you’d here from a building site coming from somewhere. We decided to investigate. Ulp! We were trying to look through the trees to where the noise was coming from, when suddenly a large hand grabs us from behind. We get dragged roughly through the woods and find ourselves thrown unceremoniously into a tent.

At this point we were both feeling really scared. We spent a very uncomfortable few hours on the cold damp floor until suddenly we get called. For the second time we are roughly transported, this time to a camp where a soldier tells us we are about to meet Robert of Rhuddlan, ‘so tidy your weird looking clothes’, he grunts to us.
(more…)