Herons Rest Marina, near Crickhowell

Herons Rest Marina, near Crickhowell

The marina on the opposite side of the canal from the towpath was opened in 2007. It epitomises the canal’s transformation from an industrial artery to leisure asset, estimated in 2007 to generate £17m for the local economy. This is also where construction of the Brecknock & Abergavenny Canal began.

The marina occupies land farmed by generations of the Lewis family at Penpedairheol Farm. At the Brecknockshire agricultural show in 1836, Mr Lewis of Penpedairheol won several prizes including the silver cup for the best cart stallion.

The family’s entire dairy herd was destroyed in 2001 in the UK’s precautionary cull of up to 10 million farm animals to eradicate Foot and Mouth Disease. This spurred the family to put into practice its long-held idea of creating a marina.

A basin was excavated and connected to the canal. Cattle sheds were converted into a boat maintenance facility, with a slipway to the water. New canal boats have been built in the sheds. The marina facilities are open all year round to any boat owners.

Within months of opening, the canal burst its banks west of Gilwern! The canal was emptied between Llangynidr and Llanover for repairs to take place over 18 months.

It’s recorded that cutting of the canal began “near Penpedairheol Farm” on 11 April 1796. Farmers were soon complaining – the canal was bursting its banks in wet weather and flooding the fields below.

The canal company responded in 1804 by lowering a section of the towpath. Surplus water would flow across the path, through a small arch and into a culvert. Today you can walk on the lowered towpath – it’s between the next two bridges to the west.

The navigable section of the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal is looked after by the charity Glandwr Cymru, the Canal & River Trust in Wales.

Postcode: NP8 1HS    View Location Map

Website of Herons Rest Marina