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Penllyn Castle

A Grade II Listed Building in Penllyn, Vale of Glamorgan

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Latitude: 51.4742 / 51°28'27"N

Longitude: -3.4716 / 3°28'17"W

OS Eastings: 297888

OS Northings: 176050

OS Grid: SS978760

Mapcode National: GBR HJ.LCH6

Mapcode Global: VH5HS.S61R

Plus Code: 9C3RFGFH+M9

Entry Name: Penllyn Castle

Listing Date: 16 December 1952

Last Amended: 30 April 2004

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 13139

Building Class: Domestic

Location: At the south end of the village, down a long drive and set on the cliff above the valley.

County: Vale of Glamorgan

Town: Cowbridge

Community: Penllyn (Pen-llin)

Community: Penllyn

Traditional County: Glamorgan

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Late C18 house, possibly very close to 1800 (said to have been built by Miss Emlia Gwinett (or Gwynette) between 1789 and 1804), attached to and perhaps also embodying remains of the medieval Penllyn castle, but also with work of the Tudor period, vide the base of the water-tower. The Regency house was further altered in the Victorian period, vide the chimney stacks, but a far more elaborate scheme for rebuilding signed by one of the Wyatts, the drawings for which survive in the house, was not built. The tithe map of 1839 shows it as a simple square block. It was described in 1852 (Lewis) as a ruined castle with 'adjoining it or in place of it, a fair house'. The chimneys, water--tower and north service wing would appear to date from about 1860-70 and may be designed by M D Wyatt, the east tower is said to be dated 1875; this work done by the Homfray family. The house appears to have had little alteration since then.


The house is presumably built of local rubble stone but is largely pebbledashed, with stone dressings and with a hipped slate roof, but there must also be much leadwork. Rectangular two storey block with its slightly shorter side facing south and including the main entrance.
The south (entrance) front has radiused angles, a cyma recta band at first floor level, a modillion cornice and an embattled parapet. Five windows, sashes with glazing bars, 6 over 9 panes on the ground floor and 6 over 6 above. Central flat-roofed green Bridgend limestone ashlar porch with pointed head outer opening, and decorated in the Batty Langley manner.
The east front has a two storey bow at the south corner and a central tall square rubble tower with battlements beyond.
The west elevation is also five bays but is rather longer. The first bay from the left has a 6 over 6 pane tripartite sash in an elliptically headed recess, 6 over 6 sash above. The next two bays are set forward and all windows are plain 6 over 6 sashes. The fourth bay has a flat headed tripartite sash with a plain 6 over 6 one above. The fifth bay is in the form of a shallow two storey bow with a 6 over 6 sash on either floor. Five tall Victorian chimney stacks with paired and tripled circular flues can be seen.
The north side is connected to an L-shaped Victorian range which includes a tall battlemented tower with a clock, which was built as a water tower, and beyond this the house is supposedly connnected to the remains of the medieval castle, but none of this was seen at resurvey (October 2003).


Interior not available at resurvey, but it is reported that it has c1860 classical style rooms with Louis Quinze style fireplaces, and there is an open-well top-lit semi-circular cantilever staircase. The rooms have contemporary panelled shutters on the west and south fronts.

Reasons for Listing

Included for its special interest as a Regency country house on a particularly fine site and having important group value with other estate buildings in its immediate locality.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II The Old School House
    At the south end of the village of Penllyn facing the drive to Penllyn Castle but approached from the road on the north.
  • II Penllyn Cottage
    At the south end of the village, at right angles to Lodge Cottage and opposite the church. Facing the main drive to Penllyn Castle.
  • II Church of St. John the Evangelist
    At the south end of the village of Penllyn at the entrance to Penllyn Castle.
  • II Lodge Cottage
    At the south end of the village, at the end of the main drive to Penllyn Castle and opposite the church.
  • II Gatepiers, Gates and Boundary Walls at entrance to Penllyn Castle Main Drive
    At the south end of the village, immediately to west of Penllyn Church and Lodge Cottage.
  • II Great House
    At the south end of the village of Penllyn on the other side of the road from the entrance to Penllyn Castle.
  • II Village Farmhouse
    Towards the north end of the village of Penllyn; facing south at right angles to the road.
  • II Easternmost Salmon Well
    One of a group of three wells to north of village of Penllyn, near the road junction to south of Penllyn Court with the minor roads. This well is the closest to the road.

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