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Latitude: 52.7023 / 52°42'8"N
Longitude: -3.2983 / 3°17'53"W
OS Eastings: 312370
OS Northings: 312420
OS Grid: SJ123124
Mapcode National: GBR 9T.2SQ6
Mapcode Global: WH79F.9BMN
Entry Name: Friends' Meeting House
Listing Date: 21 November 1974
Last Amended: 26 May 1995
Source ID: 8649
Building Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary
Location: Located in a deliberately obscure position in a fold of the hill at the end of a farm track N of Forge Farm. Burial ground is now a garden.
Traditional County: Montgomeryshire
Meeting house for the Society of Friends, erected c.1700-1702 by Charles Lloyd III, of the Quaker family of Lloyd who purchased Dolobran in 1640. His father, also Charles Lloyd (II), had been active from the early years of the Restoration, and had been incarcerated for his faith at various times even before the first Conventicle Act, from 1662 to 1672 and who was involved with William Penn in London in 1681, becoming his deputy in Pennsylvania. George Fox held meetings at Dolobran, presumably at the house of Hugh David on the Dolobran estate in 1667-8. Charles Lloyd II contemplated building a special meeting house in 1689 after the Toleration Act. The house, with a dwelling and burial ground may have been commenced before 1700, but finally erected and completed in 1701, and the first meeting held there on the 20th April. Kelsall, the diarist and schoolmaster to Amos Davies of Mathraval forge 1701 - 1715, lived at the meeting house from 1720, and recorded the visits of eminent quakers, before he moved to a new house at the forge, close to Dolobran Isaf farm. Meetings were held here by the Quaker Trustees until 1829 although the last burial took place in 1801. In 1878 it became a storehouse, and was returned to the movement in the early 1970s.
Single cell building of colourwashed brick in irregular bond, with slate roof, divided internally into an entrance lobby at the W end, with loft over, and a meeting room. Formerly the attached house had a wooden partition which could be opened up to allow the occupants to join in the meetings.
C19 boarded door to entrance with one 2-light transomed window. Meeting room has a larger external boarded door also on the S side with external rails, set in a heavy frame within a larger opening defined by a half-brick segmental arch. Two 2-two light transomed windows, also C19, replacing the first windows installed in 1747, the openings originally being unglazed. All the symmetrical meeting room openings have a simple brick drip course terminating on brick headers.
Lobby has vice stair to upper floor, and door to Meeting Room. The meeting room has a small gallery at the E end, and a window in the E gable, now blocked. The gallery formerly took its access from an external stair on the N side; only the opening now remains. Furnishings were removed to Pennsylvania and elsewhere.
Listed at Grade II* as a building important in the religious history of Wales, and as probably the earliest Meeting House in the Country.
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