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A Grade II* Listed Building in Dolbenmaen, Gwynedd

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Latitude: 52.9625 / 52°57'45"N

Longitude: -4.1211 / 4°7'16"W

OS Eastings: 257629

OS Northings: 342681

OS Grid: SH576426

Mapcode National: GBR 5Q.KFD3

Mapcode Global: WH55D.NSRQ

Entry Name: Gorllwynuchaf

Listing Date: 30 March 1999

Last Amended: 30 March 1999

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 21550

Building Class: Domestic

Location: The house stands alone on the moorland of Mynydd Gorllwyn, and is reached by a track approximately 1500m long from the Prenteg to Cwmystradllyn minor road.

County: Gwynedd

Town: Dolbenmaen

Community: Dolbenmaen

Community: Dolbenmaen

Locality: Gorllwynuchaf

Traditional County: Caernarfonshire

Find accommodation in


A fine sub-medieval house probably originally timber framed throughout, built probably in the C16. The death of Robert ap William of Gorllwyn is recorded in 1624. At some undefined later stage the outer walls were replaced in stone.


Built of rubble stonework enclosing a cruck-framed structure, with a slate roof, with rooflights, between raised coped gables probably replacing heather thatch. One storey and attic, 3 bays, with a massive external stack and a narrower outbuilding at the opposite end. Boarded door opens into the central bay, with a corresponding back door. Deeply set small windows, with modern frames and glazing. In the C19 a water wheel was located at the rear of the upper bay to provide power for domestic purposes, the launder crossing the back of the house above doorhead level. An in-line outbuilding is attached at the upper end.


The internal structure consists of two complete cruck trusses, halved and pegged at the apex, and with a tenoned and pegged collar beam and tie. Principal rafters on the back of the crucks. The tie beams which carried the wall plates are lower than the present walls, indicating that the external walls have been raised or rebuilt in stone. Some original rafters pegged to the purlin. The left bay, now the living room, is open to the roof, and has exposed purlins and rafters, one purlin with a scarf joint at the end perhaps suggesting a lost third bay. The central bay contains the entrance and the C19-C20 stair, and is divided from the upper bay by a post and panel partition. The upper rail bears evidence of three doorways originally opening into a subdivided upper bay. A rear door opens besides the stair. The upper bay contains the kitchen, and has a tie beam at the gable end offering some further evidence that the building was originally timber framed. Single tier of heavy square purlins, without windbraces. C19 stone flag floors. The gable end fireplace has a high chamfered lintel.

Reasons for Listing

Included at II* as an excellent and virtually unaltered example of a sub-medieval farmhouse built within the cruck tradition on an upland site, with good internal detail.

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Milestone
    The milestone is set in the wall at the margin of the main road, approximately 100m NE of Factory-Glaslyn.
  • II Outbuildings at Erwsuran
    The outbuildings lie opposite the former farmhouse across a small yard.
  • II Outbuilding in line with the house at Erwsuran
    The former farm lies in a hollow off the road from Prenteg to Cwmystradllyn. The building stands to the NW in line with the farmhouse at Erwsuran.
  • II Erwsuran
    The house lies in a hollow some 1km off the minor road from Prenteg to Cwmystradllyn, on the W facing slope overlooking Tremadoc.

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