A  £1 million appeal has been launched this week to save the farm and lake that form one of Wales’s most famous backdrops. The National Trust hopes to buy Llyndy Isaf, a 614-acre farm in the Nant Gwynant valley in Snowdonia, which has been offered to them by farmer Ken Owen, who is retiring after 35 years.

The farm includes the Llyn Dinas lake, which is linked to the Arthurian legend in which the young Merlin revealed the presence of a legendary dragon’s battle; the red dragon won and became Wales’s national emblem the white one lost and fell into the lake.

The Trust’s Richard Neale comments: ‘There is a real danger that, if we don’t raise the £1 million, the farm could fall into commercial hands with all of the uncertainty that this raises for the future of this tranquil place.’ This is the Trust’s most significant countryside appeal for more than a decade, following the 1998 campaign led by Anthony Hopkins to raise £4 million to buy nearby Hafod-y-Llan.

To donate, telephone 0844 800 1895, visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/snowdonia or send a cheque to The National Trust Supporter Services Centre, PO Box 39, Warrington, WA5 7WD.