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More about Cwm George & Casehill

This large site contains a mix of habitats including semi-ancient woodland, new native planting and open meadows. With an extensive network of paths and bridleways, links to trails within the wider area, and an ancient monument of European importance, there is much of interest to see and enjoy.

This site includes four woodlands - the planted ancient semi-natural Cwm George Wood and Casehill Wood, and the new native trees planted between 1999 and 2001 named Pen-y-Turnpike Wood and Casehill Meadows – which together make up a complex of varied habitats.

The mix of broadleaved trees is dominated by oak and ash in both the older woods and newly planted areas, together with stands of beech. A variety of woodland flora such as bluebell and early purple orchid can be found in the older woods, indicating their ancient status. There are also extensive areas of grassland which is being restored to incorporate multiple species for the benefit of wildlife and visitors.

Early Purple Orchid
Early purple orchid

The whole area is classed as a Site of Special Scientific Interest and contains an ancient monument known as Dinas Powys hill fort which lies on the top of a ridge between the river valley and a gorge called Cwym George. The fort is believed to have been built around 450 BC and was used on and off for twelve centuries.

The site is considered to be one of the best preserved of its kind in Wales and the most important in Europe relating to the Dark Ages, offering unique insights into the society and economic conditions of early medieval western Britain.

Setting

Cwm George and Casehill Woods are situated around half a mile south-east of Michaelston-Le-Pit, a small village close to Dinas Powys, inland from Penarth and to the west of Cardiff. The site forms the boundary of the urban area of Dinas Powys and the former parkland landscape of Cwrt yr Ala Park. Neighbouring land use includes arable land, woodland and grazing land.

Access and walks

An extensive network of permissive footpaths and bridleways has been added to allow access throughout the site, and a public footpath from Michaelston-Le-Pit to Dinas Powys runs through the gorge at the centre of the wood. The site also links to other trails in the wider area, giving visitors a variety of habitats to explore.

Directions

By bus
The closest bus stops are a short distance away in Dinas Powys.

Route 89 from Cathays stops at Llandough Hospital (5th stop). From here walk up to Pen-y-Turnpike Road and turn left. After just over 350 yards turn right: this road is sign-posted Michaelstone-le Pit. Walking downhill you will see the woods to your left and after the road bends left, the Woodland Trust entrance and car park come into view.

Alternatively on the 95 bus (Cardiff-Barry-Rhoose-Llantwit Major), alight at the Elm Grove Road stop, on Mill Road at Dinas Powys. The stop is by The Square where the Three Horseshoes pub is located. Turn right into Britway Road, passing the parish hall on your right.

After approximately 400 yards take the right turn into Twyncyn Road. Walk straight to what appears to be the top and right in front is a sign saying Private road. Turn left into Beauville Lane. The wooded road bends to the right and having reached the point where the golf course crosses the road, the road turns left and the Cwm George entrance is straight afterwards on the right hand side.

Or alternatively, instead of walking along Britway Road, by taking Highwalls Road, then turning left into Highwalls Avenue and following this to the right you come out by the Dinas Powys Golf Club’s club house and a public footpath north west across the golf course. This footpath finishes on Beauville Lane yards from the Cwm George entrance.

We advise all visitors to check travel information before their visit as it is subject to change.

By train
The closest train station is Dinas Powys. From the station, cross the road (Cardiff Road) and walk up Station Road. This comes out at The Square where the Three Horseshoes pub is. Follow directions above. The nearest mainline station is Cardiff.

Information from: traveline Cymru or 0870 608 2608.

By car

For Casehill and Pen-y-Turnpike Woods:
From Junction 33 of the M4 take the A4232. Stay on this road until the 3rd turn off (approximately six miles) which is signposted Athletics Stadium and Ninian Park. Turn right (the last exit) for Dinas Powys. Going straight away over a weak bridge, the road then climbs quite steeply. After just under half a mile is Leckwith. Then driving downhill, pass Woodland Care Home off to the right, the next turning right being access to housing.

After a 90 degree turn left where there are filter road markings to turn right but no road sign. This is just over one mile from the roundabout. Take this right turn. The road climbs steeply again. This is quite a narrow road. After three quarters of a mile from the main road turn right (sign-posted Michaelstone-le-Pit). You will see woods to the left and soon come to the car park for Casehill and Pen y Turnpike woods.

The Woodland Trust main car park holds seven or eight cars. There is also informal parking under the trees along Beauville Lane.

For Cwm George Wood:
Follow the directions for Casehill and Pen-y-Turnpike Woods, but then continue straight on. The road (Turnpike Lane) goes down hill and half a mile from the Michaelstone-Le Pit turning you enter Dinas Powys. Keep on Turnpike Lane and another half mile further along the road becomes Mill Road and ends at the Three Horseshoes pub. From here follow the directions given under the bus information.

The closest pull-in is just beyond here on the left hand side, but there is only room for one vehicle.

Nearest amenities

Public conveniences
The closest known public toilets are in Penarth, where there are five locations with disabled facilities requiring a RADAR key: Albert Road/West Terrace; Cosmeston Village, Lavernock Road; The Esplanade, Italian Gardens; The Esplanade, Penarth Pier; Bears Head, Windsor Road (trading hours) (Wetherspoons).

The miniature golf course toilets off Plymouth Road are possibly the closest. These are in Lower Penarth, turning left off Lavernock Road onto Forest Road (just after Penarth Cemetery) and then second left into Plymouth Road. The toilets are next to the car park, just after the course, on the right.  (Cardiff & Newport A-to-Z: 2000).

We advise all visitors to check this information before their visit as details are subject to change.

Refreshments
There are a number of places to choose from in Dinas Powys, Penarth and Cardiff.  Information is available from Squaremeal; Stay in Wales or tripadvisor.

Accommodation and tourist information

There is accommodation in nearby Dinas Powys and the surrounding area to suit most requirements. Visit stayinwales.co.uk or tripadvisor for more information.

Entry into our woods is free but please donate now to help us care for them.