The Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust (CPAT) project looks at how the internal combustion engine – the motor car, the bus, the tractor – changed the physical and social landscape of mid and north Wales. From the flourishing of tourism on the buses, to massive changes in the farming calendar and traditions, to the evolving soundscape – from rural idyll to roaring rally cars , to the emergence of petrol stations and the vanishing of blacksmiths, there is a broad range of unloved heritage to explore and discover.
We’re investigating the ways the internal combustion engine brought change and what evidence can be seen and felt today. We’ll be using all sorts of creative techniques, as well as archaeology and photography to document these changes. We’ve also created a brand new community hub in our Welshpool base, so that groups of young people can engage in their local unloved heritage in exciting, fun, and playful ways. Welshpool has been a “gateway to Wales” since the industrial revolution, which brought the Montgomeryshire Canal on the west side of town, and the opening of the Welshpool and Llanfair Light Railway in 1903. The remains of these bygone industries, along with early petrol pumps and garages, add to the rich story of mid and north Wales’ change in a post combustion engine world.