Event location information:



Skirrid Inn:

Fifty years after the Norman Conquest of Britain, in 1110, two men stood trial before a court assembled in the main room of a new alehouse on a road below the Skirrid Mountain. The alehouse was called "Millbrook" and the men were brothers, James and John Crowther. James was sentenced to nine months for robberies with violence and John ended his days swinging from a wooden beam at the inn, his crime? - Sheep stealing. This is the first recorded existence of the Inn known for centuries as "The Skirrid". The name Skirrid is derived from the Welsh word Ysgyryd, (a shiver). Legend says that in the hour of darkness after the crucifixion of Christ, the mountain shuddered, shivered and broke in two; hence Ysgyryd. The Inn is still a public house in the small village of Llanfihangel Crucorney, just a few miles north of Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, Wales. Work undertaken by the Glamorgan-Gwent Archeological Trust states that the Inn, in its state today is mainly Elizabethan in origin. However an Inn of some sort would have stood on the same spot going back some 500 years prior to the rebuild. The Inn looks out onto the Skirrid Mountain to the east and the Black Mountains, Wales to the west, and is in the Brecon Beacons National Park. The valleys of the River Usk, River Wye and River Monnow are near, and Offa's Dyke Path runs close by. The Skirrid is one of the oldest pubs in Great Britain, legend has it that the inn was used as a rallying point for local supporters of the Welsh Revolt against the rule of Henry IV, the uprising being led by Owain Glynd┼Ár (1359 - 1416). In the early 15th century he is said to have personally rallied his troops in the cobbled courtyard before raiding nearby settlements sympathetic to the English.

It is believed that the first floor of the inn was once used as a Court of Law over a period of many years. Halfway up the magnificent square spiral staircase stands the cell, now used as a store room, as many as 180 prisoners were adjudged guilty of crimes serious enough to warrant the sentence of death by hanging, a sentence that was carried out at the inn itself. The hanging was carried out from a beam placed across the joist of the staircase and the slab on which the bodies were placed can still be seen at the well of the stairs. The last case of capital punishment reportedly taking place sometime prior to the death of Oliver Cromwell (1658).The main doorway of the inn and many of the windows are medieval. The oak beams come from ships timbers and contain the original markings and peg-holes, and are amongst the finest in Britain. The panelling in the dining room is said to be from a British man o' war ship.