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Grotto adjoining Folly Tower at Talacre Abbey

A Grade II* Listed Building in Llanasa, Flintshire

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Latitude: 53.3393 / 53°20'21"N

Longitude: -3.3455 / 3°20'43"W

OS Eastings: 310510

OS Northings: 383330

OS Grid: SJ105833

Mapcode National: GBR 5Y2T.HP

Mapcode Global: WH769.LB4C

Plus Code: 9C5R8MQ3+PR

Entry Name: Grotto adjoining Folly Tower at Talacre Abbey

Listing Date: 2 April 1987

Last Amended: 30 April 2001

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 563

Building Class: Gardens, Parks and Urban Spaces

Location: In woodland on the SE side of the house, and S of the Folly Tower.

County: Flintshire

Community: Llanasa

Community: Llanasa

Locality: Talacre

Traditional County: Flintshire

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Talacre Abbey was built 1824-9 by Thomas Jones, architect, for Sir Edward Mostyn, on the site of an earlier house. The grotto was added to the gardens in final quarter of the C19 and is first shown on the 1899 Ordnance Survey. The adjacent folly tower is earlier, built in the third quarter of the C19.


Built partly into the natural rock, and partly using rubble and mortar to create a rock-cut appearance. The grotto has 3 well-hewn entrances, while its interior has a central chamber open to the sky, and passages with niches, carved seats and a number of carved grotesque figures in the walls. The chief of these is inside the lower entrance, and comprises a heraldic lion (representing the Mostyn family) with its mouth open, and openings at its back for lighting fires that would send flames and smoke from the lion's mouth.

Reasons for Listing

Listed grade II* as an especially notable example of a Romantic grotto retaining original grotesque carvings, and as an important component of the pleasure grounds at Talacre Abbey.

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