I can’t remember how I first heard about Trellech, but it’s been on my To Visit list for quite a while. Fate conspired to combine a rare Saturday off with a beautiful sunny and frosty day, which felt like the perfect time to visit.
Trellech is in the Wye Valley, and is said to have been the largest settlement in medieval Wales. Nowadays it’s noted for its standing stones and sacred well.
After a quick stop at the lovely Lion Inn (which had a very welcome open fire), we went to visit Harold’s Stones, so called because, according to legend, three of Harold’s Chieftains died in battle at this spot, although the stones pre-date Harold by a couple of thousand years. Another legend says that they were thrown by a giant called Jack O Kent as he was having a competition with the devil!
The Virtuous Well, or St Anne’s Well, is just off the road, but felt like the middle of nowhere. The name is derived from Annis, the Celtic Goddess of water and rivers, but become the well of St Anne when Christianised. The water was historically considered particularly beneficial for ‘complaints peculiar to women’!
The trees overhanging the well were full of offerings, strips of cloth which have been tied to the branches. Apparently fairies dance round the well on Midsummer’s Eve, so that might be a good time to go if you fancy a visit!
It really was such a beautiful day when we went, frosty and bright.