History in Structure

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Cynfal-fawr

A Grade II Listed Building in Maentwrog, Gwynedd

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.9476 / 52°56'51"N

Longitude: -3.9319 / 3°55'54"W

OS Eastings: 270293

OS Northings: 340661

OS Grid: SH702406

Mapcode National: GBR 5Y.LCCS

Mapcode Global: WH55P.K5WM

Entry Name: Cynfal-fawr

Listing Date: 28 April 1952

Last Amended: 25 February 2005

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 4775

Building Class: Domestic

Location: Set back from the SW side of a country road leading W off the A470(T) at Bont Newydd to the B4391; located c.2kms ENE of Gellilydan.

County: Gwynedd

Community: Maentwrog

Community: Maentwrog

Locality: Ceunant Cynfal

Traditional County: Merionethshire

Find accommodation in
Ffestiniog

History

First recorded as a residence in 1480, owned by Rhys ap Ifan, the house then passed down to his son Hwyel ap Rhys who in turn had 3 sons - Owen, Rhys and Dafydd, the last of whom probably built the 'new' part of the house in C16. All that remains of the original house is the cruck and a stone arch to the 'simne fawr'. The 'new' part of the house was re-fronted circa 1800.
Huw Llwyd was a renowned local hero, a bard, practioner of medicine and hunter, he was also descendant to Morgan Llwyd, though the relationship between the two is not known. Cynfal-fawr is recorded as being the birthplace of Morgan Llwyd o Wynedd, educated in Wrexham he is known as mystic, puritan minister and writer of the Commonwealth period. There is a stone on the outer wall of the older part of the house that bears the inscription: 'Caleb LLoyd 1660': Caleb Lloyd was one of Morgan Llwyd's sons.
Cynfal-fawr was licensed in 1669 as an Independent meeting house and was passed down to Morgan's 2nd son Samuel who married Mary Adams; their 2 grandsons, Christopher and Joseph Bushman were the last of the family to live at the house to live at Cynfal; a stone bearing the inscription: Joseph Bushman / 1794 is set in the wall of the kitchen (formerly sited on the wall of the stable).
In 1949 a slate plaque was placed on the wall of the house that bears the inscription: Yma Y Guned / MORGAN LLWYD O WYNEDD / (1619 - 1659) / PIWRITAN, LLENOR, CYFRINYDD / AWDUR / "LLYRY Y TRI ADERYN" / "GORAU I BLENTYN FOD GYDA'I RIENI: / GORAU I DDYN FOD GYDA'I DDUW "

Exterior

Farmhouse built of roughly coursed, mortared, rubble masonry with long stones in the build and as quoins and lintels. Slate roof with tall gable stacks with dripstones and capping. The main part of the house is the 'new' part, refaced circa 1800. A 2-storey with attic, 3-window range with central panelled door under a shallow overlight. Distinctive fenestration of 3-light casements with transoms, and gothic heads to lower lights, on each floor, including to close-spaced gabled dormers of attic storey.
The older part of the house forms a single-storeyed gabled range at the left (E) end: this has a small 4-pane light in the apex under a series of (later) doveholes. Return range has doorway offset to R and 2 windows to L; the central window a 2-light casement and the window to far L a fixed light of 9-panes. Directly L of the doorway is the commemorative plaque to Morgan Llwyd and there is a single ridge stack offset to L of the central window.
At right angles to the L (S) end of the older part of the house is a lofted agricultural range with added outshut along the N lateral wall. The entrance to the range is in the E gable, with pitching door above; the outshut has a boarded door to far R (N) an a fixed light of 2-panes to L.

Interior

The older part of the house retains a central truss and timber stairs to the N end, the kitchen has open fireplace with a arched stone as bressumer and a stone tablet which bears the name and date: Joseph Bushman / 1794.

Reasons for Listing

Listed as an important regional house with late medieval origins. It retains a regionally characteristic form, in which 'old' and 'new' houses, together with agricultural buildings, are conjoined; the 'new' house has distinctive exterior character dating from a remodelling of c1800. The house also has important historical associations.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Stable to SE of Cynfal Fawr Farmhouse
    Set back from the SW side of a country road leading W off the A470(T) at Bont Newydd to the B4391; located c.2kms ENE of Gellilydan.
  • II Bryn-yr-odyn
    Set back from the N side of a country road leading W off the A470(T) at Bont Newydd to the B4391; located c.2.5kms ENE of Gellilydan.
  • II Barn and cowshed at Bodloesygad
    To the L and rear of Bodloesygad; end onto the hillside.
  • II Bodloesygad
    Located approximately 1km S of Ffestiniog and reached down a steep farm track; facing E across Cwm Cynfal.
  • II House 100m SW of Bont Newydd
    Ffestiniog
  • II Tegannedd
    Adjoining Melbourne house, stepped down and advanced; set back slightly behind a low rubble wall.
  • II Melbourne House
    Facing the square to the SE; set back on a slightly raised terrace behind plain contemporary railings.
  • II Ty'r Banc
    Facing the square to the SE; set back on a slightly raised terrace behind plain contemporary railings.

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