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Raised walk at Gwydir Castle

A Grade II* Listed Building in Trefriw, Conwy

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Coordinates

Latitude: 53.1328 / 53°7'58"N

Longitude: -3.7967 / 3°47'48"W

OS Eastings: 279889

OS Northings: 361021

OS Grid: SH798610

Mapcode National: GBR 64.6N5W

Mapcode Global: WH65X.NJ76

Entry Name: Raised walk at Gwydir Castle

Listing Date: 30 May 1996

Last Amended: 30 May 1996

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 16938

Building Class: Gardens, Parks and Urban Spaces

Location: Listed as a mid-Tudor carved courtyard or garden arch, with associated walls. Additional NG Ref's 27970 36097 to 27988 to 36107 Group value with other listed items at Gwydir Castle.

County: Conwy

Town: Llanrwst

Community: Trefriw

Community: Trefriw

Locality: Gwydir

Traditional County: Caernarfonshire

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History

The raised walkway, known as the `Chinese Walk' in the C19 was probably constructed by Sir John Wynn, first Baronet of Gwydir during extensive improvements carried out on the estate in the 1590s. Its purpose appears to have been chiefly that of enclosing wall, possibly to the park on the S side, the enclosure of which is mentioned in 1597. However, it was also clearly intended for access from the first, as its width and stepped ascent at the Gwydir end testify. At the Conway end the wall originally swept around in an arc to follow the river northwards; here the wall is fragmentary. The surviving remains of what appear to have been a quay also appear at the end of the wall. It is thought that Sir John made the Conwy navigable for small ships and barges up to Gwydir, and there are certainly accounts of wine, tobacco etc. being delivered from London via Beaumaris. The wall therefore presumably also acted as a causeway leading to the quay; a water-colour of c.1785 shows the wall with an avenue of mature trees and, at the Gwydir end, with a square, pyramidal-roofed gazebo or lodge.

Exterior

Long wall of approximately 2m height, 1.5m width and .5km length; constructed of large slate-stone and boulder blocks, roughly battered on the N side. Large roughly-dressed slate slabs form the coping/ wall-walk. It is possible that originally the wall was earthed over and grassed. At the Gwydir end a broad flight of 8 slatestone steps lead up to the wall top. These are flanked by stepped rubble parapets. At the top are early C19(?) rubble piers, formerly supporting a large slate lintel, thereby forming a flat-arched entrance; these are ruinous. At the Conwy end the wall is interrupted by a modern tractor opening, and continues beyond for a few further metres before becoming ruinous; late C19 iron and wire balustrade to wall top, partly missing.

Reasons for Listing

Graded II* as a scarce surviving example of a late C16 parkland structure, probably associated with Sir John Wynn's work at Gwydir.

Group value with other listed items at Gwydir Castle.

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