|Pontypool Park Gates - Pontymoile Entrance|
Pontypool park is leased to the Local Authority by the Hanbury-Tenison family who are substantial landowners who made their fortune as iron founders. The Pontymoile park gates were first made in 1720 but were remodelled into their present form in 1835 according to the Torfaen Council website. They are now grade II listed and known as The Sally Gates. Sally was the nickname of the Duchess of Marlborough and local legend has it that they were a present to the Hanbury family for their help with the execution of her late husbands will.
Other sources suggest that the gates were presented to Major John Hanbury by the Duchess of Marlborough in 1703 when Major Hanbury married Bridget Ayscroft.
In 2010 a controversy arose when the National assembly ruled that the gates should remain Georgian green; the colour that the council painted them in 2007. This colour was required by Cadw following paint scraping to reveal their original colour. However, this decision angered a number of people who insisted that they should remain the traditional colour of black with gilded leaves. Cadw claim that their recommendation was well researched and enhanced the appearance of the gates, though councillor Fred Wildgust insists that this is historically incorrect and that the change of colour is a travesty. There is, however, no right of appeal against the decision of the National Assembly.