Saturday, 18 June 2016

Mapping Mountains – Significant Name Changes – Y Trichant

New Piece (SJ 297 141)

There has been a Significant Name Change to a hill that is listed in the Y Trichant, with the following details relating to a hill that was surveyed with the Trimble GeoXH 6000 on the 17th December 2013.

The hill is situated in the Breiddin, which is a compact group adjoined to the Cefn Digoll group of hills and is positioned close to, and in part, on the border between Wales and England.  The hill is positioned to the north-east of Y Trallwng (Welshpool) and between the small communities of Criggion to its north-west and Middletown to its south south-east.

The summit area of New Piece in the foreground with the distinctive profile of Rodney's Pillar atop the Breiddin in the background

The hill appeared in the Sub List that accompanied the 300m P30 list on Geoff Crowder’s website under the partly invented name of Breidden Forest Top, with an accompanying note stating; Name from forest at summit.  This was based on the name of the conifer plantation that takes in much of the northern and western section of these hills, and was used as its name appeared centred over this hill’s summit on the Ordnance Survey 1:50,000 Landranger map.

Breidden Forest Top
       Name from forest at summit

The listing this hill is now a part of is named Y Trichant and these are the 300m height band of hills within the Twmpau (thirty welsh metre prominences and upward) and takes in all Welsh hills at or above 300m and below 400m in height that have a minimum 30m of drop, with an accompanying sub category entitled the Sub-Trichant taking in all Welsh hills at or above 300m and below 400m in height that have 20m or more and below 30m of drop, with the introduction to the re-naming of this list appearing on Mapping Mountains on the 13th May 2017, and the summit height, drop and status of the hill was confirmed by the survey with the Trimble GeoXH 6000.

During my early hill listing I paid little regard to name placement on a map, or the meaning of names and to what feature the name was appropriately applied to and used many names that seemingly applied to a hill and whose placement was nearest the summit of the hill on Ordnance Survey maps of the day.  Therefore I prioritised names for listing purposes that I now understand are inappropriate.  This hill is one such example, and therefore the details relating to it were examined on the Tithe map.

The term Tithe map is generally given to a map of a Welsh or English parish or township and which was prepared after the 1836 Tithe Commutation Act.  This act allowed tithes to be paid in cash rather than goods.  The Tithe maps gave names of owners and occupiers of land in each parish and importantly for place-name research they also included the name of enclosed land.  This enclosed land is usually based on a field system, however not every field is given a name, but many are and especially so in Wales.

The enclosed land is given the number 164 on the Tithe map

The enclosed land where the summit of this hill is situated is given the number 164 on the Tithe map, this can be cross referenced against the apportionments; it is these apportionments that give the name of the owner or occupier of the land as well as the name of the land.  The land where the summit of this hill is situated is named as New Piece on the Tithe map and described as Pasture; the details on the Tithe map appear in the county named as Montgomery and in the parish of Alberbury.

When cross referenced in the apportionments the enclosed land is named as New Piece

Prior to researching this hill's details on the Tithe map I scrutinised Ordnance Survey maps and made local place-name enquiries.  To the south-west of this Sub-Trichant is a P30 hill that qualifies for Trichant status and which was surveyed as being 321.6m (converted to OSGM15) high and with 41.3m (converted to OSGM15) of drop.  This P30 is listed by the name of New Pieces which is the name that appears adjacent to this hill’s summit on Ordnance Survey 1:50,000 Landranger and 1:25,000 Explorer maps and whose name was confirmed locally.  Whilst making local enquiries I was told that there used to be a house in the area where the forest is now, that was named Piece House and that there is a pool in the forest known as Piece Pool.  The pool is unnamed on current Ordnance Survey maps and is positioned at SJ 296 139.  However, my local enquiries concentrated on the P30 hill and not the Sub-Trichant.

Therefore the name this hill is now listed by in the Y Trichant is New Piece, and this was derived from the Tithe map.

The full details for the hill are:

Group:  Breiddin

Name:  New Piece

Previously Listed Name:  Breidden Forest Top 

Summit Height:  320.2m (converted to OSGM15)

OS 1:50,000 map:  126

Summit Grid Reference:  SJ 29767 14148 
Drop:  25.2m (converted to OSGM15)

Myrddyn Phillips (June 2016)

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