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Cascades Returned to Former Glory

The work on the Cascades was completed by a local contractor using a mini-digger and a large volume of silt and mud was removed.

In addition to the Cascades, the contractor also completed the clearance of a number of water courses throughout the park.

The Cascades were created by the wealthy industrial family the Mackworths.

The estate originally passed by marriage to Sir Humphrey Mackworth, a Member of Parliament who made the Gnoll estate the centrepiece of an industrial empire, milling and manufacturing brass and iron goods including kettles.

The success of his industrial work enabled him to lay out formal gardens near the park’s mansion house. 

It was Sir Humphrey's son Herbert, also an MP, who extended the gardens once again and from 1730 he began extensive landscaping works, creating sweeping viewpoints and building the cascades.

Over the next few decades the grounds were embellished with classical features including a grotto, gatehouse, and a castellated temple.

© Neath Port Talbot Council