View of the Llandudno seafront
from the Great Orme
History of Llandudno
Theosophy and Llandudno
The Dion Fortune Connection
Dion Fortune was born in Llandudno,
She was the daughter of parents with an active interest in the Christian Science and Garden City movements and the running of hydro-therapeutic establishments. Her interest in occultism was sparked in 1916 when, as a psychotherapist, she came across the startling work of Dr. Theodore Moriarty, who became her first esoteric teacher and inspired her series of short stories The Secrets of Dr Taverner.
Her interest and involvement in psychoanalysis attracted her towards the occult by their apparent overlap. She Studied occultism under Dr. Theodore Moriarty and joined both the Theosophical Society and the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn in 1919, in the Alpha et Omega Lodge run by the novelist Brodie Innes.
Later she transferred to Stella Matutina Lodge of the Golden Dawn run by Moina MacGregor Mathers and developed mediumship capabilities in herself whilst continuing the occult/psychological interest.
Her writings in this period reflect this:
MACHINERY OF THE MIND THE SOYA BEAN
THE PSYCHOLOGY OF THE SERVANT PROBLEM
THE PROBLEM OF PURITY
THE ESOTERIC PHILOSOPHY OF LOVE AND MARRIAGE
THE ESOTERIC ORDERS AND THEIR WORK
THE TRAINING AND WORK OF AN INITIATE
THE COSMIC DOCTRINE
PSYCHIC SELF DEFENCE
THE SECRETS OF DR. TAVERNER (Novel)
THE DEMON LOVER (Novel)
Her strong magical-psychological bias was modified by a powerful vision about the need to take on board the Christian dynamic, and she joined, somewhat reluctantly, the Christian Mystic Lodge of the Theosophical Society of which she soon become President. As a result however of strong disapproval of senior figures in the Theosophical Society, and the Golden Dawn, in her view, becoming moribund, she founded the Community of the Inner Light, first at Glastonbury and soon also with a headquarters in London. In 1927 she married Dr. Thomas Penry Evans.
Most of her subsequent non-fiction work first saw the light of day in The Inner Light Magazine and her inner development can be followed fairly straightforwardly from their titles.
AVALON OF THE HEART
SPIRITUALISM IN THE LIGHT OF OCCULT SCIENCE
THROUGH THE GATES OF DEATH
PRACTICAL OCCULTISM IN DAILY LIFE
MYSTICAL MEDITATIONS ON THE COLLECTS
THE MYSTICAL QABALAH
THE WINGED BULL (Novel)
THE GOAT-FOOT GOD (Novel)
THE SEA PRIESTESS (Novel
The novels were an attempt to give practical exemplification to the theoretical principles given in her important textbook THE MYSTICAL QABALAH.
At the outbreak of war she continued in difficult circumstances, (including being bombed out of her headquarters temporarily), to keep the Fraternity going with a series of Weekly Letters and after the restructuring of the group in 1942 in readiness for the post-war epoch by a series of Monthly Letters, paper rationing having put a stop to magazine and book publication. She also continued work on the novel MOON MAGIC. Her writings of this time have been collected and edited by Gareth Knight under the titles of
AN INTRODUCTION TO RITUAL MAGIC
THE CIRCUIT OF FORCE
PRINCIPLES OF HERMETIC PHILOSOPHY (which includes "Esoteric Principles of Astrology"). Teaching upon the Arthurian Tradition that she initiated at this time has been incorporated into THE SECRET TRADITION IN ARTHURIAN LEGEND by Gareth Knight.
January 1946 Dion Fortune returned from
Llandudno is a seaside resort and town on the North Wales coast between Conwy and Colwyn Bay, and at the 2001 census had a population of 20,090 including that of Penrhyn Bay and Penrhynside, which are within the Llandudno Community. The town is just off the North Wales Coast railway line which was opened as the Chester and Holyhead Railway in 1848, became part of the London and North Western Railway in 1859, and part of the London, Midland and Scottish Railway in 1923. Llandudno was specifically built as a mid-Victorian era holiday destination and is served by a branch railway line opened in 1858 from Llandudno Junction with stations at Deganwy and Llandudno.
Llandudno is styles as the Queen of the Welsh Resorts, a
title first implied as early as 1864 is now the largest seaside resort in
Wales, and lies on a flat land between the Welsh mainland and the Great Orme peninsula. Llandudno,
historically part of Caernarvonshire, has been in recent years a part of Aberconwy within Gwynedd and from
1996 has been part of
Modern Llandudno takes its name from the ancient parish of Saint Tudno but also encompasses several neighbouring
townships and districts including Craig-y-Don, Llanrhos,
This wide sweep of sand and shingle extends two miles in a graceful curve between the headlands of the Great Orme and the Little Orme.
For most of
the distance on Llandudno's
Near the centre of the bay is the North Wales Theatre and next to it The North Wales Conference Centre. The Llandudno Yacht Club and a roundabout mark the end of this section of The Parade and beyond are more hotels and guest houses but they are in the township of Craig-y-Don.
At Nant-y-Gamar road, The Parade becomes Colwyn Road with the fields of Bodafon Hall Farm on the landward side but with the promenade continuing until it ends in a large paddling pool for children and finally the Craigside residential development on the lower slopes of the Little Orme.
The town's award winning pier is on the North Shore; it was built in 1878, and is 1,234 feet in length and a Grade II listed building.
Looking back towards the town from the end of the pier, on a clear day one can see the mountains of Snowdonia rising over the town. A curious major extension of the pier in 1884 was in a landwards direction along the side of the Grand Hotel to provide a new entrance with a pier pavilion theatre at the North Parade end of the promenade, thus increasing the pier's length to 2,295 feet.
In the summer, Professor Codman's Punch and Judy show (established in 1860) can be found on the promenade near the entrance to the Pier.
The Great Orme
This great limestone headland has many attractions for the tourist including the Great Orme Tramway that takes tourists effortlessly to the summit.
Two features of the Great Orme should be mentioned here because the both start at the end of the promenade where North Parade becomes for a short distance Happy Valley Road, which in its turn becomes the Marine Drive.
The Happy Valley, a former quarry, was the gift of Lord Mostyn to the town in celebration of the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1887. The area was landscaped and developed as gardens, two miniature golf courses, a putting green, a popular open air theatre and extensive lawns. The ceremonies connected with the Welsh National Eisteddfod were held there in 1896 and again in 1963. In June 1969, The Great Orme Cabin Lift, a modern alternative to the tramway, was opened with its base station adjacent to the open air theatre. The distance to the summit is just over one mile and the four-seater cabins travel at six m.p.h. on a continuous steel cable over two miles long. It is the longest single stage cabin lift in Britain and the longest span between pylons is over 1,000 feet. The popularity of the 'Happy Valley Enertainers' open air theatre having declined, the theatre closed in 1985 and likewise the two miniature golf courses closed and were converted in 1987 to create a 280 metre artificial ski slope and toboggan run. The gardens were extensively restored as part of the resort's millennium celebrations and remain a major attraction.
route round the perimeter of the Great Orme was a
footpath constructed in 1858 by Reginald Cust a
Trustee of the Mostyn Estate. In 1872 the Great Ormes Head Marine Drive Co. Ltd. was formed to turn the
path into a carriage road. Following bankruptcy, a second company completed the
road in 1878. The contractors for the scheme were Messrs Hughes, Morris,
Davies, a consortium led by Richard Hughes of Llandudno.
The road was bought by Llandudno Urban District
Council in 1897. The four mile drive (it is one way
only) starts at the foot of the
The West Shore is the quiet beach on the estuary of the River Conwy. It was here at Pen Morfa that Alice Liddell (of Alice in Wonderland fame) spent the long summer holidays of her childhood from 1862 to 1871. There are few hotels and a few quiet residential streets. The West Shore is linked to the North Shore by Gloddaeth Avenue, a wide dual carriageway.
Running behind the promenade is Mostyn Street leading to Mostyn Broadway and then Mostyn Avenue. These are the main shopping streets of Llandudno and Craig-y-Don. Mostyn Street accommodates the high street shops, the major banks and building societies, two churches, amusement arcades and the town public library. The latter is the starting point for the Town Trail a carefully planned walk to facilitate the viewing of Llandudno in an historical perspective.
Every year in
May Bank Holiday weekend, Llandudno has a great
three-day Victorian Carnival and
Llandudno has a link with Lewis Carroll; because the
family of the "real
Wales Theatre, Arena and Conference Centre, built in 1994, extended in 2006 and
renamed "Venue Cymru" is located near the
centre of the promenade on
Llandudno is unique within the United Kingdom in that its
lifeboat station is located inland, allowing it to launch with equal facility
from either the
Early History of Llandudno
The town of
In 1848, Owen
Williams, an architect and surveyor from
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