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This is the twenty-eighth of a series, the “Caerphilly Collection”, that will explore the whole Borough Council area. Two virtual caches lead to the final regular cache (in a medium sized plastic lunch box), while exploring the historic hamlet of Bedwellty. The overall walking distance is about ¾ mile, on surfaced paths or roads, with minimal ascent. Care should be taken on the roads, which lack pavements. You may need to mug up on Disney characters to do this cache!
The Caerphilly Collection is distinguished with a unique CC number and is made up of 50 caches. The caches vary in difficulty and type and usually have other “C” word connections – castle, cheese, coal, canal, etc. There may even be Cryptic Clues for Clever Clogs! The current Caerphilly unitary authority grew out of the former Rhymney Valley and Islwyn Councils and stretches from the outskirts of Cardiff and Newport in the south to the Brecon Beacons, north of Rhymney. Despite a past dominated by coal and heavy industry, it has a diverse history and varied and dramatic scenery. We hope you will enjoy exploring it with us.
Towards the end of the Collection is CC48 The Accumulator, the location of which is given in coded form. The translation details of the code are distributed around the whole Collection, but only about a third of the caches will contain a piece of the code, which is on the back of the Log Book. To do the Accumulator, you will need to keep a note of each piece of code that you find. Unless you are very lucky, you will need to find the majority of the Collection in order to do the Accumulator. The Accumulator cache is hidden in an area of difficult terrain and demanding navigation, with a 5,4½ rating.
This tiny hamlet has enjoyed far greater importance. The parish once extended to Rhymney, Tredegar, part of Ebbw Vale, Blackwood and Bargoed. Only in 1974 did the Urban (yes, urban) District Council of Bedwellty disappear, while the parliamentary constituency bearing the name (and which could boast electing a Prime Minister) changed to Islwyn even more recently. At the heart of Bedwellty, occupying a commanding hilltop location, is St Sannan’s Church – a prominent landmark, especially in its yellow coat (in this case, CC standing for coloured church). Enjoy the views from the churchyard, particularly on a clear day, with the unbroken line of sight up the Rhymney Valley to Pen-y-fan and Corn Du. And is that a flying saucer in the fields just beyond the greyhound track? No, it’s just a water supply service reservoir (CC also stands for circular construction), of a design that has been quite well used around South Wales – now that you know what to look for, see how many more you can spot!
You will usually find the church, which dates from the thirteenth century, locked but, if the opportunity presents itself, it is well worth a peek inside. In the churchyard, there is an eighteenth century iron gravestone (against the south wall of the church) which is testament to the corrosion resistance of iron produced at this time. Children may wonder why there is a lychgate, when the adjacent stone style offers a much more interesting entrance. There is convenient parking by this entrance on the south side of the church.
In the following, VC stands for Virtual Cache and RC for Regular Cache.
VC1 is at the coordinates given for the cache listing. Under the red cowled urn, how many times does Thomas appear? This number is a. You also need to find the preaching cross and discover in whose memory it was restored (two words). Prior to restoration, it had been another CC, crumbling cross. The two words have b and c letters in them, respectively.
VC2 is at N51 41.db6 W003 12.be9, where:
d = the mean of a and c
e = a minus c minus half of b
At VC2, the rather delicately etched hill scene caught our eyes. Then we spotted a more poignant epitaph on a stone with a picture of a Disney humanoid and his insect companion (sounds like something out of Dr Who). This is not just an excuse for another CC (cartoon characters), for you need to note the number of letters in the names of these characters. The humanoid’s name (tricky spelling this!) has f letters and the insect’s names have g and h letters. How many days old was Rachel Sian when she died? This number is j.
RC3 is at N51 41.kg3 W003 12.mn1, where:
k = the mean of f and j
m = f minus h
n = h minus k minus m
On the way to the cache, you may wish to look in on St Sannan’s Well at N51 41.gj8 W003 12.mk6. When the cache was originally placed this was overgrown, neglected and easily missed, so we are pleased that it has now had a make-over.
Ubyr ng onfr bs urqtr, tvivat npprff gb ghaary gb evtug va prager bs urqtr
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Coordinates are in the WGS84 datum