The Clearances of the Epynt

At the beginning of World War II the War Office urgently needed extra land and facilities for training purposes. One particular requirement was for an area at least three miles long that could be used for artillery practice. Mynydd Epynt and a smaller mountain to the west of it, Mynydd Bwlch-y-groes, were selected. The process of acquisition was completed by 30 June 1940, and the area became know as the Sennybridge Training Area, usually abbreviated to SENTA. Sennybridge itself is a small town on the A40 a few miles west of Brecon, and the training area comprises about 12,000 hectares to the north of it.

Until 1940 the area was occupied by a community of farmers and their families. In order to create SENTA 54 homes had to be vacated and 219 people were obliged to leave. At the same time a primary school, a church, and the Drovers Arms inn were closed.

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