We were in Montgomery to relax. The smallest county town in England or Wales. It is a beautiful market town with such a fine range of distinguished buildings. They were glowing in the warm sunshine. It is a peaceful place. There is a romantically ruined castle high above the town, the beautiful church of St Nicholas, the wonderful town square and Michelin starred dining. What could be better? It is such a lovely place to relax, without motorway or railway. A place to make contact with the past and with one particular story, for it was here in 1821 that John Davies was brought to die.
He was hanged in front of the gaol. A miscarriage of justice if ever there was one. His grave is in Montgomery, signposted off the path that leads from the north gate of the churchyard to the church tower. It is marked by a simple wooden cross but it tells such a tale.
It is a notorious story, one of a cursed conspiracy, innocence and perhaps divine outrage.
This tragic story appears in my next book, Grave Tales of Wales, which was published by Cambria in July 2021. The book explores the stories represented by thirty gravestones from across the whole of Wales, from Anglesey to Cardiff, from Llangrannog to Newport.
The stories are about the surprising lives of the people who still lie beneath those stones, who still lie beneath your feet, and who still have something to say.
There are stories of anguish and sorrow, stories of courage and achievement and these tales from the past that can still speak to us today. There are great events here – the Titanic, the sinking of The Royal Charter, the execution of a King, the exploration of the Antarctic – but there are also terrible murders and tragic deaths.
Through these graves you can explore fascinating and sometimes unexpected stories from Welsh History
The book is 190 pages long and is illustrated throughout with full colour photographs
Find out more by looking for Grave Tales From Wales in the menu or by following this link.
If you would like to buy a copy, then find the How to Buy page in the menu or by clicking here
Alternatively, you can just click on the Add to Cart button below
Here you can listen to me narrating a shortened version of the Robber’s Grave
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