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Park in the Past-Hope

On our recent familiarisation trip for local businesses, we set off to Park in the Past in Hope.

Making good of an old disused quarry Park in the Past is a heritage and conservation project that   has been developed over the years to create a totally unique heritage attraction and vital community resource. Set in an ancient Welsh landscape, the park comprises 120 acres of outstanding natural beauty offering woodlands and wetlands, a magnificent 35-acre lake and the gorgeous River Alyn, as well as wonderful walks and spacious fields. Led by an innovative team of volunteers with a vision led by Paul Harston.  There is much more to this place than initially meet the eye.

Using different pots of funding the volunteers have managed to create areas of landscapes from different time periods using the ecology of the time and as you wander through the park you come across a wildlife area of post glacial landscapes, planting so many trees and 75,000 square meters of wildflower meadow. They had Oyster shells and coral dating back to before the ice age.

There is a cave where Arteology run family friendly workshops that encompasses Neolithic paint making with fats to Romano Egyptian funeral masks and everything in between. Glow lights were used to show the cave painting.

The view then opened to a landscape similar to one you would expect to see in the first century when the Romans arrived showcasing beautiful botanical examples of wild orchids.  Unbelievably as if transported to the past we then came upon a roman fort with two roman sentry guards. It turns out they were the carpenters who enjoyed a little re-enactment at the weekend. The reconstructed fort is based on an actual Roman fort that was discovered in Lanarkshire in 1938. Paul explained that the fort was his Dad’s vision and has been nicknamed Egg’s Fort after his Dad.

Their aim is to create an entire ancient landscape complete with a full-scale, fully-functioning Roman fort. The first conquest-period timber fort to be built in Britain for nearly 2,000 years.

Paul explained they had recently hosted a 9 day international Roman re-enactment festival called Auxilia where the park was filled with visitors and campers and re-enactment groups from around Europe.

The Park also has a lake where you can swim and do all kinds of water activities and they also have a place where you can hire SUPS and canoes, as well as a fantastic café.

After a lovely packed lunch supplied by Lovelies Delights in Mold we took the bus to Carrog in the Dee Valley and caught to train to the brand new station in Corwen, followed by a tour of Corwen by our tour guide Sarah, for further details of our visit to Corwen and the new train station please read our previous blog here.

If you are interested in getting involved in our fam trips or networking with like minded businesses look out for news on our next Tourism Forum in Oriel House St Asaph in October.