Landscapes and Post-Industrial South Wales

Stuart enjoys taking great photos and uncovering the stories behind them.

His main photography project is Merthyr Road - a look at the history and the legacy of the industrialisation of the South Wales Valleys.

Towards Pontypridd

Merthyr Road In Mist

It’s Christmas Eve, which means that this week’s theme of a snow-covered Merthyr Road is drawing to a close. So, to finish off the week, here’s how the end of my street looked on Saturday morning after the unseasonable snow Friday afternoon and evening.

40 years ago, before the A470 trunk road was completed, this was the main road between Cardiff, Merthyr and Brecon, but thanks to the snow and mist, this week it was reduced to picture-postcard status. Plenty of 4×4’s and vans still struggled up and down it, with the odd car too, but snow ploughs? Didn’t see one all morning whilst we were out with the cameras, sadly.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s seasonable and unusually (for me!) topical theme. Have yourself a safe and Merry Christmas.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Snow-Covered Cables

This week’s wallpaper theme is the unseasonable snow that arrived at the weekend, as we countdown to Christmas Day on Saturday.

Everywhere we looked was a photograph just waiting to be taken, and that included looking upwards. It’s fair to say that much of South Wales infrastructure remains firmly in the 20th century, and there are fewer things that hark back to the fading end of the industrial period more than the mass of telegraph poles carrying overhead cables into our stone terraced houses. If you’re out and about trying to capture photos, remember to look up!

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Cottages Through The Trees

Between Pontypridd and Abercynon, the floor of the valley is mostly farmland, punctuated by this row of currently snow-blanketed cottages. They look very postcard-like in this shot. They also look like they need some extra loft insulation adding too!

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Poor Driving Conditions

One of the reasons we chose to move to Pontypridd was that it’s got excellent road and rail links, including the impressive A470 trunk road. But on Saturday, the recent and unseasonable winter weather turned both the A470 and its predecessor (renumbered the A4054) into snow-bound car parks for the morning.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Taff Trail Sign In The Snow

My plan for this week was to start my ‘2010 In Photography’ review … but the turn in the weather at the weekend was simply too good a photography opportunity to pass up. So, as we countdown to Christmas Day on Saturday, my wallpaper choices this week are all based around South Wales in the unseasonable winter snow.

The UK has been suffering from the snow for a bit now, but mostly we’ve managed to avoid it down here in and around Cardiff. All that changed on Friday, as the snow gods finally remembered about us and decided to pay us a visit! Mrs H and I woke up on Saturday morning to a scene we haven’t seen since I moved over here ten years ago now, and headed out on foot with the cameras to capture the conditions. We’re very lucky where we live, as the Taff Trail runs very close to our front door. Oddly enough, there weren’t any cyclists out on Saturday morning though 😉

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

If you’re reading this in the RSS feed, my original blog post also includes a Google map showing where this photo was taken. Unfortunately I haven’t managed to get the map to appear yet in the RSS feed, so for now you’ll have to click through to my blog if you want to see the map. Sorry.

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Duddo Five Stones

To bring the last fortnight’s theme to a close, here are the Duddo Five Stones standing around the crown of the hill in all of their weathered glory.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this week’s wallpapers as much as I enjoyed sharing them with you. With just one week to go to Christmas, next week I’m going to start counting down my favourite desktop wallpaper choices of 2010. If you have any favourites of your own, please leave a comment!

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

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Weathered Stones

We’ve visited quite a few standing stones and stone circles over the years, and yet the stones at Duddo stand out for me partly because of how weathered they appear. I can’t think of another set of stones that I’ve seen that are quite so weathered.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

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Standing Stone And The Cheviots

The five standing stones at Duddo are set to the magnificent backdrop of the Cheviots, and we were lucky enough to visit them on a day back in September that really showed off how wonderful they can appear.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

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Standing Stone And The Hills

The stones at Duddo are said to be the finest in Northumberland, and when we visited them in September, we were thrilled by the stones and their magnificent setting.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

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Straw In The Fields

With the cold weather forecasted to return today, my choice of desktop wallpaper is a pleasant memory of September warmth and hay in the fields, freshly harvested.

Copyright (c) Stuart Herbert. Blog | Twitter | Facebook
Photography: Merthyr Road | Daily Desktop Wallpaper | 25×9 | Twitter.

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