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Latitude: 52.8386 / 52°50'18"N
Longitude: -4.5039 / 4°30'13"W
OS Eastings: 231443
OS Northings: 329726
OS Grid: SH314297
Mapcode National: GBR 56.TBD6
Mapcode Global: WH44N.SXH7
Entry Name: Castellmarch
Listing Date: 19 January 1952
Last Amended: 1 April 1998
Source ID: 4215
Building Class: Domestic
Location: Situated down drive running W from A499 from point some 1.5 km N of Abersoch.
Traditional County: Caernarfonshire
Country house built 1625-9 for Sir William Jones (1566-1640), Chief Justice of Ireland from 1617-20 and Judge of the King's Bench in England from 1624-40. His son Griffith Jones was kidnapped from the house by a Royalist landing party who plundered the house in the Civil War. Owned by the Vaynol estate from at least the early C19 to 1907, and tenanted throughout by the Griffiths family; said to have been in decay c1810.
Substantial gentry house. Rubble stone with graded slate roofs, coped gables and stone stacks, two of them massive external lateral chimneybreasts on S side and W rear walls, two gable end stacks to N and SW gables. Two storeys and basement, L-plan, with projecting crosswing to left of E front. High ogee-moulded plinth. Large moulded stone, mullion-and-transom, windows, with leaded lights, and hoodmoulds, to main front. Crosswing has large S side-wall stack, 4-light window to each main floor (actually 2 closely-paired 2-lights), and 3-light mullion window without transoms to attic. N return has blank 2-light each floor and basement window. Main range to right has 4-window range of 2-light windows and entry in third bay from left. 8 stone steps up to fine sandstone porch of 2 Roman Doric columns, frieze and pedimental gable. Dripcourse above frieze, stepped over centre armorial plaque. Frieze is crudely fluted with armorial plaques, 4 front and 3 each side. Larger arms above with 1628 date. Arms indicate Jones' ancestry. Studded plank door in moulded doorcase, hollow and ogee mouldings, Tudor-arched, under deep-coved hoodmould. N end gable wall is windowless except for basement light. S end, the side of crosswing, has plinth carried around massive external chimney, one-window range of 2-light windows to right, the upper one original, the lower one C20 replacement in timber, in original frame. No hoodmoulds. To left of stack, a lean-to porch, first floor 2-light window lighting stairs, the left side blocked, and attic 2-light mullion window. To left projects an added wing with S end stone stack and C20 window each floor to E front. Rear of house has chimney gable to right, massive projecting chimneybreast to right of centre and outshut to left. Chimney gable has centre 12-pane window in older stone frame. 2-light mullion-and-transom window each floor to extreme left against side of chimney breast, the upper one stone the lower C20 wood. Chimney breast is high and sheer to eaves level, then slated shoulders into broad shaft of large boulder stones. Outshut to left is extended beyond left end of house and has 3-window range, mostly renewed windows. The part extended beyond has a monopitch roof against a high rubble wall at right angles to house E end, buttressed at NE angle with corner stack.
Complex interior with main stair in S crosswing and secondary stair inserted into cross-passage from front door. This suggests considerable alteration in the main range: the stair is against a post-and-panel partition to right, obscuring a shaped door-head. It is suggested that this partition is reset and the stair made up of fragments including C17 carved balusters. Stone wall to left of entrance hall may also be later as is the stone wall between main range and crosswing as this partly obscures a rear window. Room to left has 2 large stop-chamfered beams, axial, so presumably also inserted with the walls they rest on. Rearmost of the beams has slots for a partition, not usual in this position. S end has central large dog-leg oak stair with partitions each side, with shaped door-heads. Two flights, solid treads, and thick moulded grip-type rail. Square carved balusters to second flight and tall moulded newels from floor to ceiling. Cupboard under stairs is panelled with reused panelling, the pattern also found in the window seat of main room to E of stairs.
First floor said to have moulded stone fireplaces in main room of crosswing and S room of main range. Plaster relief over corner fireplace in crosswing rear room has pilastered arch with arms within and 1629 date over. There is similar work, dated 1628 over corner fireplace in N room of main range. Roofs not seen, that over cross-wing said to be modern.
A fine earlier C17 country house, little altered.
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