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Folly Tower, Pontypool

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Landmark Tourist Spot
The Folly Tower - - is a folly located within the grounds of a working farm, close to Pontypool Park, Torfaen, South Wales. It is a prominent local landmark above the A4042 Pontypool to Abergavenny road and overlooks Pontypool to the west and rural Monmouthshire to the east. The Folly is octagonal in shape and roughly 40ft high and is approximately 1000ft above sea level on the eastern hill range of the Eastern Valley of Monmouthshire, just south of Mynydd Garn-Wen. Less than a mile from the folly is the Shell Grotto.Early historyThe precise date of construction is unknown but it is generally thought that the original tower was built around 1765 to 1770 by John Hanbury, a local landowner and ironmaster who owned Pontypool Park. The local name of The Folly was in use as far back as 1865 when the Free Press of Monmouthshire described it as:"...an elevated spot where a Tower (formerly a Roman watch-tower) was many years since rebuilt as an observatory and which is popularly known as 'The Folly'."It is thought the tower was renovated around 1831 by Capel Hanbury Leigh. This date is derived from a keystone from the doorway bearing an '1831' inscription. The tower provided a vantage point over the local area and quickly became popular and a well known feature of the area.
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37 reviews
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  • This folly has been renovated and some years ago (approx 20 years ago) was reopened by Prince Charles. On a nice sunny day it is wonderful up there.  more »
  • So beautiful. Can't believe it took me so long to visit; I've been looking at the tower from my classroom window for years. This has definitely made it onto my list of favourite places. Just one tip; ...  more »
  • One of the loveliest walks above Pontypool runs from Trevethin, past the Folly Tower and onto the Grotto at the top of Pontypool park. The Folly Tower is a great landmark, although the one there now i...  more »

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