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Tretower Court Barn

A Grade II* Listed Building in Llanfihangel Cwmdu with Bwlch and Cathedine (Llanfihangel Cwm Du gyda Bwlch a Chathedin), Powys

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Latitude: 51.8834 / 51°53'0"N

Longitude: -3.1837 / 3°11'1"W

OS Eastings: 318621

OS Northings: 221198

OS Grid: SO186211

Mapcode National: GBR YY.RJX6

Mapcode Global: VH6C8.RXRK

Entry Name: Tretower Court Barn

Listing Date: 21 October 1998

Last Amended: 21 October 1998

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 20660

Building Class: Agriculture and Subsistence

Location: 100m S of Tretower church and on E side of a minor road opposite Tretower Court.

County: Powys

Community: Llanfihangel Cwmdu with Bwlch and Cathedine (Llanfihangel Cwm Du gyda Bwlch a Chathedin)

Community: Llanfihangel Cwmdu with Bwlch and Cathedine

Locality: Tretower

Traditional County: Brecknockshire

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Built probably c1480 when Sir Thomas Vaughan added the gatehouse and curtain wall to Tretower Court. The building now known as Tretower Court Barn was originally a much longer range at the N end of which was an attached wall, embattled and with main and postern gates, built across the road and attached to a boundary wall on the opposite side. It originally contained service accommodation at the S end, perhaps for retainers, and possibly a stable at N end. All that survives from this original phase is the S gable end with fireplace and stack. In mid-late C16 a barn was added to the S gable end. Later, probably C17, the long original range was mostly demolished (although a short section of wall survives N of extant barn) and replaced by a new byre and threshing barn. Structural evidence suggests that it had at least one threshing floor and a granary loft. The building was much restored mid C20 contemporary with the restoration of Tretower Court.


Barn of rubble sandstone with a stone-tile roof and slightly swept eaves. A butt joint separates the building into 2 units, of which the N unit is slightly longer and comprises the C17 rebuild while the S unit is the C16 barn. In the W wall facing Tretower Court the N unit has a tall cart passage doorway to L under renewed timber lintel and with double boarded doors, to L of which is a doorway under a timber lintel and with boarded stable door. The L jamb of the doorway continues up as a full-height butt joint. To R of cart passage are 3 doorways to dung and feed passages of byre, all with boarded doors under long timber lintels, above which cross-beam ends are exposed (possibly indicating a former pentice). In the S unit is a tall, wide cart passage doorway with double boarded doors and renewed timber lintels. The jamb on the lower S side consists of large limestone blocks. Flanking the doorway are 2 tiers of small openings framed in dressed stone. In the S gable end is a blocked window (with inserted narrow breather and flanked by similar breathers), above which is a 5-light window with diamond mullions and minor stanchions in wood and under a timber lintel. In the E wall of the S unit the cart passage doorway has renewed lintel and corrugated iron doors, to R of which is a single small opening framed in wood. The N unit has a cart passage doorway to R boarded up, to L of which are 2 openings under timber lintels (the blocking of a 3rd is visible inside the building), which correspond to the passages in the byre. (Corrugated lean-to attached to rear.) To R of cart passage doorway is a tall narrow breather. The N gable end has 3 tiers of breathers.


The dividing wall between N and S units has, on N side, a large late C15 fireplace at original first-floor level with a deep chamfered lintel. The level of the floor is visible in the dividing wall but nothing else survives of it. Inside the N unit is a rubble stone partition wall between byre and barn which butts the main walls and rises to the height of the cross-beams and defines position of a former loft (lower than the 1st floor of the original building). S of partition wall the 3 passages have flagged floors and the former stalls are partly cobbled. In the S face of the dividing wall is a first-floor stack on corbels, although it is blocked beneath the roof.

Reasons for Listing

Listed Grade II* as a sub-medieval farm building of rare quality, with interesting earlier origins, and an important element in the setting of Tretower Court, one of the finest medieval houses in Wales.

Scheduled Ancient Monument BR146 (POW)G

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Wall N of Tretower Court
    Detached from NE side of Tretower Court, facing a minor road.
  • II Wall N of Tretower Court Barn
    On E side of minor road through Tretower immediately N of Tretower Court Barn.
  • I Tretower Court
    Approximately 150m S of the parish church on W side of a minor road between Tretower and A40
  • II Boundary Wall SE of Tretower Court
    Butting SE corner of Tretower Court and facing a minor road to Heoldraw, with garden behind and modern wall to S.
  • II Church of St John the Evangelist
    In the centre of Tretower on S side of A479 and N of Tretower Court. The site occupies a triangular plot surrounded by minor roads.
  • II Ty Llys
    On SW side of Tretower church and on W side of burial ground. The house front is enclosed within forecourt railings.
  • II Church Hall
    On N side of Tretower church.
  • II 2 Vine Tree Cottages
    In the centre of Tretower W of a junction with minor road to Tretower Court. The front faces S down a footpath, to rear is a pavement at high level.

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