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line, bordering on the parish of Pyle and Kenfig, leads easterly, across Newton Down, to near a small mound called Twmpath Ddaear, on which there was formerly a signal post. From this mound, (settled after an appeal to be on the boundary,) the line trends in a southeasterly direction for another mile, to the entrance of the road from Tythegston to Pyle on the common. Thence it skirts the brink of the old enclosures to near Penyrheol farm house, and a little to the south of it, from a large stone, turns westerly to Farm Wen, and leaving the Down, descends along the Hillway field, through the eastern end of the Graig, and approaching within half way between Newton village and Wickvach farm, it terminates on the sea-shore, about half a mile to the eastward of Newton Point, at the spot above the Black Rocks, from which our perambulation of not less than eight miles and a half began. On the east, Cwm Car seems a more natural and obvious boundary from Merthyr Mawr parish. The old road to Tythegston and Bridgend, before the increase of drift sand, led through it, and roads were very often made lines of demarcation. However, for a long period, the eastern boundary, as now given, has continued unchanged. It is observable that the larger portion of the Down lies north of Newton hamlet, whilst of the cultivated lands, the somewhat greater part is rated in the hamlet of Nottage, and extends northward of that village.
The general features of the surface are marked by the steep slope of Newton Down, which protects the enclosed lands from the north and east winds, affording a gentle descent from its foot, for about a mile, to the sea side. A conspicuous windmill, now in ruins, stands on the edge of the escarpment at an elevation of 307 feet. The Ridge of the Down, of which the Graig is a continuation, extends from Grove south-easterly towards Candleston, Merthyr Mawr, and the Ogmore river, and is composed of mountain limestone, being in fact part of the brim of the basin of the South Wales coal field. On the edge of the Down, north-west of the windmill, manganese has been worked, and further on, ferruginous limestone, used profitably as a flux in the iron works.
A thin uncertain vein of lead ore has also been worked at the Red House, on the shore south of Newton village. Traces of it are found in Pant yr Yards to the north of Newton. The later magnesian or dolomitic lime overlies the mountain limestone at the Shelf, and thence extends southwards to the Shortlands, near Nottage. The marl accompanying this stratum has been formerly much used in agriculture. It is probable that the coarse agates, jaspers and sards, found on the beach in Traeth Treco? have been washed out of its debris, while the sands usually associated with it, may form part of the large accumulation on the coast and in the channel. The mountain limestone, which has veins of a liver coloured marble susceptible of good polish, abounds in the usual fossils, and chiefly varies in being more or less tabular and compact.
As to external features and aspect, the Ridge of the Down is broken by hollow depressions. Proceeding from the east, there is first the hollow, down which the present turnpike road from Bridgend descends; next there is a pant, or dingle, near the windmill. This may be traced to the Foss land and the Newton Wain, or pool, over the north end of which is the causeway on the road to Nottage. The next pant, or hollow, is called, from an old almost obliterated trackway, connected probably with the Birt Way at Ty thegston, Pant yr Heoles. This depression is intersected at The Shelf, but it may be traced to the Nottage Wain, a meadow which, though less permanently overflown, sometimes, after continued rains, extends for half a mile to the south, and its waters (kept back by the drifted sands) flood across the marshes, joining the Newton Pool at its southern extremity. Westward of Nottage the land gradually rises towards the Lock's Common, on the sea-coast. In very rough weather,
2 This name is derived from the wreck of the Treco in the Little Bay. Tresco is the name of one of the Scilly Islands.
the breakers can be seen, high above this rocky ridge, at full two miles distant.
Careful observation will prove that there are still existing some few traces of early settlement. At the eastern end of the parish the road from Bridgend and Laleston passes through a circle, now incomplete, formed of large millstone grit blocks, similar to those which are usually considered druidical circles. A bronze celt (Fig. 1) was found in the western end of the parish some years ago, and it is now preserved in the Neath Museum. But perhaps the strongest proof of early occupation may be derived from the small tumuli or barrows only noticed of late years, in Nottage hamlet, in two of which vestiges of ancient interment were distinctly observed. The first clear recognition of the object of these neglected mounds was made in or about the year 1827. One of them was then intersected by the formation of a railway to Porthcawl. Being in the northern side of a field called the Barrow, (adjoining the Ball's Croft,) a satisfactory explanation of the object of the ridge or mounds and of the name of the field, was afforded by the discovery of the remains of a human skeleton carefully buried, which the tenant of the field first brought to my notice. This information was fully confirmed by the discovery made in 1846, at another mound nearly a mile and a half to the south, but on the same side of the railroad, and close to the entrance of the tunnel near Porthcawl harbour. Earth was wanted for a garden, and in raising a supply from a small tumulus on which once stood a boundary mere stone, fragments of a rude cylindrical urn were found. From the pieces shown me, two or three of which I retain, the urn appeared to have been about six inches in diameter, tapering to three at the base; it had been inverted to protect the remains of a human body.3 From
* I have a piece of bone hacked with a cutting instrument from this mound.