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Gwerclas Hall

A Grade II* Listed Building in Cynwyd, Denbighshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.9682 / 52°58'5"N

Longitude: -3.4118 / 3°24'42"W

OS Eastings: 305281

OS Northings: 342135

OS Grid: SJ052421

Mapcode National: GBR 6M.K5Q5

Mapcode Global: WH780.KNKD

Entry Name: Gwerclas Hall

Listing Date: 4 June 1952

Last Amended: 28 January 2004

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 662

Building Class: Domestic

Location: Located approximately 1.5km NW of Cynwyd, and reached by a lane which leads from Pont Dyffrdwy.

County: Denbighshire

Community: Cynwyd

Community: Cynwyd

Locality: Gwerclas

Traditional County: Merionethshire

Find accommodation in
Corwen

History

A fine classical-style house dated 1767, built on the remains of an Elizabethan or Tudor house. Gwerclas was a seat of the indigenous Welsh aristocracy, and its rebuilding in the C18 may have been a conspicuous display of their power and wealth. The house is little altered, except that the former deep eaves cornice has been lost and the roof slates were replaced by tiles in the mid-late C20.

Exterior

Double depth square-plan house with symmetrical 3-window front of 3 storeys with attics and cellars. Symmetrically-arranged 2-storey gabled wings, advanced to front. The main range and wings are on a rubble stone plinth, possibly related to the C16 house. Brick-fronted, but otherwise of random stone construction, under a hipped tiled roof with modillion eaves; red brick chimney stacks. The front has hornless sash windows with gauged brick heads. Central entrance with fine classical-style open porch; a cornice with triangular pediment is supported on round columns with Ionic capitals. Inside is a replaced part-glazed panelled door within a moulded doorcase. Flanking the entrance are tall round-headed sash windows. To the 1st floor are 2 tall Venetian windows, between which is a large sandstone tablet bearing a stylised painted urn in relief. It bears the date, 1767, and the initials HH LM, said to relate to H. Hughes and Margaret Lloyd. The 2nd floor has 3 x 12-pane sash windows.
The fronts of the wings each have a central Venetian window to the ground floor and a pair of 12-pane sashes to the 1st floor. Blind semi-oculus to each gable. The inner side of each wing has a cavetto-moulded stone cornice. Red brick ridge stack to N wing, that to S wing taken down.
The windows to the sides and rear of the house are mainly wooden casements with lead quarries or iron glazing. To the S side is a 2-light window to L of attic storey, which lights the stairs. A 2nd attic window to the R has been infilled with brick. Lighting the cellar stairs, to the L, is a 2-light stone window with ovolo-moulded mullion, probably not in situ. The rear elevation has a brick ridge stack. Very tall stairlight to R, consisting of continuous 2-light casement windows with quarries, beneath which is a late C20 boarded door leading to the ground floor. To the L are 3-light casement windows to each of the 3 main storeys, not symmetrically arranged, and with timber lintels. C20 boarded door with small light to far L of ground floor. To the centre of the basement storey is a 2-light stone window with chamfered mullion, said to have been re-used from elsewhere. W side of main block has 2 attic windows; a long service range adjoins at right angles beneath (cross ref.)
The S side of the S wing is roughcast and has no openings. A gable with stack was added c1900, the original brick ridge stack having been removed. Its W gable end has a 3-light window to each storey. The N side of the N wing faces into a courtyard of outbuildings (cross ref.).

Interior

Large central stair-hall with reception rooms leading off and staircase to rear. Fine full-height open-well staircase, contemporary with construction of house. Turned wooden balusters and newel posts, with moulded wreathed handrail and decorated tread ends; there are said to be 50 steps. In front of the staircase is a wide depressed archway with fluted pilasters, cornice and moulded keystone; panelled moulded reveals. The stair-hall has a flagstone floor, laid in a diaper pattern. Plastered ceiling has cross-beam with shallow chamfer. Panelled doors with raised fields in large panelled doorcases, each bearing a classical-style frieze to the top between decorative capitals. Reception rooms not seen.

Reasons for Listing

Listed as an ambitious C18 gentry house retaining good contemporary detail, and apparently built on the footprint of its submedieval predecessor.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Oubuildings adjoining N side of Gwerclas Hall
    Courtyard buildings adjoining N wing of hall, and projecting to the E.
  • II Summerhouse, Garden Wall and attached privy at Gwerclas Hall
    Located approximately 40m to the rear of Gwerclas Hall
  • II Outbuildings to NE of Gwerclas Hall
    Located to the NE of Gwerclas Hall and associated courtyard buildings.
  • I Plas Ucha
    Located off the W side of a lane which runs N from Cynwyd to Melin Rug. The front faces S, the ground sloping downhill to the E.
  • II Hafod y calch
    Located along a track which runs E off a lane between Cynwyd and Melin Rug, and 1.3km S of Pont Melin Rug. Situated in a lowland position close to the River Dee.
  • II Plas Isaf
    Located down a short track off the W side of a lane which runs from Cynwyd to Melin Rug and approximately 0.5km from Pont Melin Rug.
  • II* Pont Dyffrdwy
    Located immediately W of Cynwyd village, and carrying a minor road over the River Dee.
  • II The Blue Lion Hotel
    Prominently sited at the crossroads in the centre of the village, at a splayed angle to the road.

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