Replacing tap ceramic cartridge

You should be able to get the jaws of medium sized adjustable spanner onto that at a slight angle unless you've already rounded off the brass. Then give it a sharp tap with a pin hammer or similar light hammer and it should go.

The wee horseshoe or C clip is to hold the threaded shaft of the valve into the valve body.

Thankyou. Our local plumber came with a spanner with a dog leg in it. It was very tight though.
Ceramic valve with cheap rubber washers. You could see how much it had worn down compared to the new one, plus feel how much tighter the movement of the tap was with the new one in.
Thanks everyone
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We did and they didn't work.

Sorry, I missed that in your first post. Is it possible that the box spanner was the wrong size?

---------- edit- I notice that you then mention that an offset spanner worked and that quite a bit of torque was required. I haven't personally experienced a correct sized box spanner slipping. Perhaps it is down to the quality of the box spanner.
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