Margam Stones Museum is a small Victorian schoolhouse near Port Talbot, which now provides a home for one of the most important collections of Celtic stone crosses in Britain. All originally found within the locality of Margam, and mostly assembled as a collection in the 19th century, they provide enduring testimony to a Welsh Christian culture between the 6th and 16th centuries.
The striking Cross of Conbelin is the most celebrated example. From around 1000 AD, it is a huge disc cross with Celtic interlace and plaitwork patterns, figurative scenes including a hunting scene, and inscriptions telling us who made it and who erected it. There are 17 early Christian stones, plus 11 memorials and other stones from the post-Norman periods. The museum is run by Cadw, the Welsh historic sites agency, and is close to Margam Abbey Church and the ruins of the Abbey buildings.References:
Varberg Fortress was built in 1287-1300 by count Jacob Nielsen as protection against his Danish king, who had declared him an outlaw after the murder of King Eric V of Denmark. Jacob had close connections with king Eric II of Norway and as a result got substantial Norwegian assistance with the construction. The fortress, as well as half the county, became Norwegian in 1305.
King Eric's grand daughter, Ingeborg Håkansdotter, inherited the area from her father, King Haakon V of Norway. She and her husband, Eric, Duke of Södermanland, established a semi-independent state out of their Norwegian, Swedish and Danish counties until the death of Erik. They spent considerable time at the fortress. Their son, King Magnus IV of Sweden (Magnus VII of Norway), spent much time at the fortress as well.
The fortress was augmented during the late 16th and early 17th century on order by King Christian IV of Denmark. However, after the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 the fortress became Swedish. It was used as a military installation until 1830 and as a prison from the end of the 17th Century until 1931.
It is currently used as a museum and bed and breakfast as well as private accommodation. The moat of the fortress is said to be inhabited by a small lake monster. In August 2006, a couple of witnesses claimed to have seen the monster emerge from the dark water and devour a duck. The creature is described as brown, hairless and with a 40 cm long tail.