Come and walk the woodland trail and experience the delights of one of Wales,s oldest documented woodlands and enjoy the wealth of rare plants and wild flowers.
In the early part of the 14th century Bachygraig was the royal hunting forest of Edward the Black Prince, such forests were important to the prince as a source of revenue, timber, game and recreation and his interest were jealously guarded by a forester.
Edward the Black Prince is known to have had five hunting forests in Clwyd at Bachygraig, Ewloe, Shotwick, Loidcoid and Rusty, the latter two being situated in Hopedale. Today only Bachygraig remains as testament to a time when Flintshire formed the tattered margins of the Welsh Princedom and the means of access for the English Kings to the celtic heartland of Gwynedd and North Powys
Much timber from Bachygraig went to the castle at Rhuddlan for construction works and as firewood,and no part was wasted. The foilage of elm, lime, and ash was sold as fodder for cattle and the bark of the oak, with its high tannic acid content was used for tanning leather. Even the honey from the wild bees of the woodland was collected and sold.
Dating from the early 14th century there are many references to timber use relating to bachygraig preserved in the registers of Edward the Black Prince and the Chamberlain of Chester,s Accounts, and to "dry and leafless oaks " as fuelwood supplied to the Prince,s Bachelor, Sir John de Byntre, during his visits to the castle at Rhuddlan
There are several earthbanks here which were constructed during this period to both denote a boundary and preserve the covert, herbage and deer within, they would have been topped by a planted hedge or wooden pale fence, materials for the latter being obtained from the woods themselves. The long documented history of the woodlands at Bach y Graigrsuggests they may be indirectly derived from the primeval woodland which once covered much of Wales. Such continuity makes the woods of high value for nature conservation. Over 90 species of plant have been recorded at Bachygraig including the Broadleaved Helleborine (a member of the orchid family) and there are 21 species of tree and shrub alone.
There are 3 active badger setts,though the animal itself is seldom seen, signs of its presence are everywhere.
Bach y Graig,
North Wales. LL17 OUH
Tel: +44(0)1745 730627