Marl Hall Woods, Llandudno Junction
This patch of woodland, centred on a limestone cliff, is visible from quite far away, and once provided a navigation aid for sailors. The woods are named after the adjacent Marl Hall, which was once owned by the powerful Holland family. In 1627 the hall was purchased by Conwy-born John Williams, one of Britain’s most influential men at various times in his career. The building mostly fell into disrepair after a fire c.1740, but was restored in the late 19th century and is now (as Marle Hall) an outdoor education centre for Warwickshire County Council.
The woodland is a Coed Cadw (Woodland Trust) reserve and a Site of Special Scientific Interest. It is notable for the limestone grassland above the cliffs, coloured briefly each summer by the scarce blue flowers of spiked speedwell. The woodland features mature native oak, ash, wych elm and yew. The lower slopes were planted with beech in the 1960s. There are also some mature exotic trees, such as Holm Oak, which were introduced centuries ago by the owners of Marl Hall. Some of the exotics found the area so much to their liking that Coed Cadw has had to check their spread.
In 2002 archaeologists identified caves in the vicinity from the Pleistocene era (2.6 million to 11,700 years ago) with possible evidence of human activity.
From the top of the escarpment there are fairly extensive views, with Conwy Castle prominent in the centre.
Just north of the woods is the site of a 1944 aircraft crash in which five servicemen were killed.
Postcode: LL31 9JA