Magical memories of Denmark Farm

Over the past few years we have been offered two separate accounts about the history of Denmark Farm. These fascinating memories are helping to fill the gaps in our knowledge about this beautiful piece of land and its previous use.

Dai Jones (Cambrian Printers, Aberystwyth) recalled a little stanza about an incident which took place at Denmark Farm around 150 years ago.  

Here it is as Dai was told many years ago by his father. It was written by a poet from the Jenkins family in Tregaron, believed to be an uncle of the well known Swagman, Joseph Jenkins, Tyndomen, Tregaron.  

Yn Denmarc Farm mae Spill yn byw

A’r gwaethaf dyn a greodd Duw,

Aeth un o’r da i gae yr yd

A thyngodd y diawl fod nhw yno i gyd.  

“It’s from the time before fences when they used to pay children and young people to keep the cattle away from the corn-field. The story goes that this boy fell asleep and a person called Spill (from Denmarc Farm) caught him. He must have had a heck of a row as he wrote this little stanza saying that Spill was the worst person that God ever created. He continues by saying that one of the cattle went to the cornfield and the Devil (Spill) swore that all the herd were in the field (they probably were). It’s a nice little verse that has remained for such a long time in the memory of local people and to my knowledge is not written down anywhere.”  

More recently we have heard from Elunud Kemp who is the niece of Tom and Hilda Davies who lived and farmed at Denmark Farm between 1933 and 1967. Elunud said “I can recall pigs, beef, dairy, and some sheep, a lot of free range hens, large veg patches, cabbage fields, great mushrooms in one field, and hazels on the lane, a pump for the well to get water, and what can best be described as a latrine, no indoor sanitation. Uncle Tom and Aunt Hilda both died childless within rapid succession of each other. I spent all my school holidays at Denmark Farm as a child and it is a huge part of who I am. I have such fond memories of it. I have it preserved in aspic in my mind.”  Eluned has kindly sent us some of her photos.

 

If you have any other information, photographs or memories of Denmark Farm’s history, we’d love to hear from you.

6 thoughts on “Magical memories of Denmark Farm”

  1. Alun Williams

    Most interesting and hold sweet memories of both Williamses during 1951/3 when Alun and Morfudd spent 2 holidays. Merfyn D and Welshpool family also there. Eluned Kemp might well be interested to contact me.

    1. Eluned Kemp (nee Francis)

      Hello Alun, Can you believe I have only just seen this. I am hoping to go to Denmark farm on Thursday en route from Sheffield to Pembrokeshire. My email address is below.

  2. Alun williams

    Eluned– A massive surprise to find of your Dyfed trip. A chat would be wonderful with me here at Aberystwyth (01970624498} or SY23 3UB. any time . Loads of Denmark memories remain ! .

  3. Vanessa Socha

    My grandparents farmed at Denmarc Farm, Betts Bledrws in the mid 1920’s to early 30’s. This must surely be the same place. They were Edward & Annie Williams. They moved from Harlech & returned to farm at Penrallt near Harlech 1933. My father’s youngest sister Mona was born there. Sadly they have all now died but I remember my father talking about the move to Denmarc farm. They had been delayed for some reason but when they arrived, neighbouring farmers had ploughed the land & planted (what they planted, I don’t know) realising that it was late in the year to start planting. My father had been very impressed by their kindness. I wish I had asked more questions & remembered more.
    My father’s cousin who also farmed in the Harlech area told me that they had caused some comment when they left Harlech as they went to the trouble and expense of taking their livestock with them instead of selling up & buying locally.
    I visited the farm some years ago on an open day.

    1. Mara Post Author

      Hello Vanessa, lovely to hear from you. It looks like your family were farming here directly before Thomas and Hilda Williams who we have photographs of in 1933. Were Thomas and Hilda related to Edward and Annie Williams I wonder? Possibly not as it was a common surname then as it is today. If you have any more stories or even photographs please do get in touch. Thank you.

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