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My decision to write about Hay, or Hay-on-Wye to give our town its full name, stems from a snippet of conversation I overheard during my lunch break a few weeks ago. This is how it went:
Wife: Did you bring the camera?Husband: No I didn't – but there's nothing worth photographing here anyway!
At the time they were standing in full view of the Castle - but facing the other way!
I have always lived near Hay so I thought I would tell you a little about things that I find interesting and, for those who bring their camera, maybe worth photographing. The best place to start, I think, is with the Castle as it is probably the biggest and oldest building in Hay and is built on raised ground above the market square – you can't miss it! Parts of the building date from around 1100 but various sections have been knocked down, damaged, rebuilt, added to and restored in its long and varied history. It has changed hands many times and has survived frequent attacks plus a couple of damaging fires, the most recent of which was in 1977. The castle has been owned by Hay Castle Trust since 2011 and, with the help of Cadw and other partners, they hope to protect and conserve the remaining buildings with a view to opening parts of the castle and grounds to the public. At the moment you can only walk around one the side of the castle from an entrance on Castle Street or from opposite the main car park.