Bagillt - From 'A Topographical Dictionary of Wales' (1849)
BAGILLT, a rising town and hamlet, in the parish and union of Holywell, Holywell division of the hundred of Coleshill, county of Flint, North Wales, 3 miles (E. by S.) from Holywell; containing about 2300 inhabitants. This place, which is divided into Bagillt-Vawr and Bagillt-Vechan, is situated close on the southern shore of the estuary of the Dee, on a road which, branching off from the great Chester and Holyhead road at Northop, runs through Flint, and rejoins the main line at Holywell. The Chester and Holyhead railway also, opened in 1848, passes by Bagillt. The Halkin mountain, rich in mineral treasures, rises on the south-west; and on the western side of this eminence, the ancient line of demarcation called Wat's Dyke proceeds through the township to its termination by the Dee, near Basingwerk Abbey. Here are very extensive collieries, affording employment to upwards of 250 men, and yielding annually more than 40,000 tons of coal, which is chiefly exported coastwise to Ireland, the Isle of Man, Liverpool, and the distant parts of North Wales. There are also at this increasing place three separate and extensive establishments for smelting lead-ore, which annually produce upwards of 25,000 tons of that metal; and connected with them are refineries for extracting from the lead the proportion of silver which it contains: the amount of the latter metal thus annually procured, averages above 300,000 ounces. Subordinate to these principal establishments are extensive works for manufacturing the lead into sheets, pipes, and bars; and in the various departments nearly 600 men are constantly employed. Steam-vessels, which maintained a constant communication between Holywell and Liverpool, used to ply daily between the latter place and the quay at Bagillt, but they have been discontinued.
A church, dedicated to St. Mary, a beautiful structure in the pointed style, was erected some years ago, chiefly by the munificence of the late David Pennant, Esq., and the aid of Jesus' College, Oxford. The living is a perpetual curacy; income, £150; patron, the Vicar of Holywell. A National school has been built near the church, capable of containing 230 children; an infants' school is also supported in connexion with the Established Church, together with a Sunday school. There are places of worship for Independents, and Calvinistic and Wesleyan Methodists; a British school is supported by the dissenters, and they have three Sunday schools. Between Gadlys and Pentre Bagillt is an eminence, called Bryn Dychwelwch, or "the Return Hill," from a tradition that it is the spot where Henry II. gave the order to his forces to retreat, when engaged in the battle of Counsyllt, or Coleshill; for the particulars of which, see the article on Holywell.