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Llys Cynhaearn

A Grade II Listed Building in Dolbenmaen, Gwynedd

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Latitude: 52.9353 / 52°56'7"N

Longitude: -4.1911 / 4°11'27"W

OS Eastings: 252838

OS Northings: 339796

OS Grid: SH528397

Mapcode National: GBR 5M.M2DQ

Mapcode Global: WH55K.LHG1

Plus Code: 9C4QWRP5+4H

Entry Name: Llys Cynhaearn

Listing Date: 30 March 1999

Last Amended: 20 December 1999

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 21555

Building Class: Domestic

Location: The former vicarage stands on a by-road branching off the main Criccieth to Portmadoc road at the E end of Pentrefelin village,

County: Gwynedd

Town: Criccieth

Community: Dolbenmaen

Community: Dolbenmaen

Locality: Pentrefelin

Traditional County: Caernarfonshire

Tagged with: House

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The building was commissioned by the Bishop of Bangor as the parsonage for Pentrefelin. It is a relatively early work by Clough Williams-Ellis, and was completed in 1913. Known as the Old Vicarage until sold by the Church in Wales. The house was re-windowed in the early 1990s, and extended in 1998 in a matching style.


House, in a free C18 domestic revival style. Trefor granite with slate roofs and clay hip tiles. Eaves are strongly projecting with raking soffits, carried forward on scrolled wrought-iron brackets. Two storeys, L-plan, with main range facing SE over gardens, and slightly lower short advanced wing defining small forecourt at entrance front. Cross-wing of c1998 parallel to this range at W. Windows throughout are uPVC replacements of original sashes. Garden front is strongly symmetrical with broad central gable with circular window towards apex: a 7-window range (3-2-3 bays), the pattern of fenestration to the ground floor altered by the introduction of paired central French doors, and similar doors alternating with windows to either side. Curved steps leading to central doors added c1998 in appropriate style. The central gable is flanked by hipped dormers set within the roof. Symmetrically placed battered stone stacks to either side. Right hand return has round-arched entrance with small-paned glazed door with interlace set to left up curving steps. Dormer through eaves to right above. Screen wall to entrance forecourt attached at angle, with round-headed archway through, and terminal pier at lane with remains of finial.

Entrance front has semi-circular tower with conical slate roof clasped in the angle of main range and advanced wing forming porch. Outer small-paned glazed door (either the original or closely modelled on an original) set in basket arch. Small recessed panel over door. Single window in main range to right, and 2 dormers in roof above. Return of cross-wing has shouldered stack with circular feature containing the slate carved arms of the Bishopric of Bangor. The upper floor of the cross-wing and the porch are slightly jettied on stone corbels, a detail which has been repeated in the parallel modern wing.


The house is planned with axial corridors on each floor running along the rear. Principal rooms thus all face SE to overlook garden. Small service area towards W end, this now extended by the modern wing. Staircase and other service accommodation contrived within the original forward wing. Internal detail is all C18 in style, and much of the original scheme survives, including internal joinery (2-fielded panelled doors to all rooms - the door to the service area is double-hung and has traceried fanlight); fireplaces with deep bolection moulded surrounds to simple slate cheeks on ground floor (more ornate cast-iron fireplace in sitting room), simpler surrounds to first floor. Staircase with widely spaced turned balusters and deeply moulded handrail rises in a short enclosed straight flight then curves to follow the line of the porch tower, a parallel curved landing leads to the upper room of the advanced wing: this contains a small curved cast-iron basket grate which may be C18, or a good copy.

Reasons for Listing

Listed (notwithstanding re-fenestration) as a notable early work by an eminent C20 Welsh architect, an excellent essay in a free C18 vernacular revival style, effectively combining tradional material with robust modelling and detail (particularly internally).

External Links

External links are from the relevant listing authority and, where applicable, Wikidata. Wikidata IDs may be related buildings as well as this specific building. If you want to add or update a link, you will need to do so by editing the Wikidata entry.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Pentrefelin Church Hall
    The building stands back from the Tremadoc to Criccieth road and is reached by a short path leading to high ground N of the village.
  • II Cefn-y-meysydd isaf
    The house lies at the end of a farm road leading off the minor Pentrefelin to Dolbenmaen road, and N of Pentrefelin village.
  • II Carreg-felin
    The farmhouse lies on well-wooded rising ground back from the main Tremadoc to Criccieth road, E of Pentrefelin village.
  • II* Church of St Cynhaearn
    The church stands alone on the former island in Llyn Ystumllyn, approx 900m S of Pentrefelin, and is reached by a track from the village.
  • II Monuments to John Williams and Ellis Owen
    The two monuments stand immediately outside the W door of St Cynhaearn's church, on the right side of the path to the lychgate.
  • II Carreg and Pilkington Tombs
    The two railed tombs are close to the S side of the nave of the Church of St Cynhaearn.
  • II Gravestone of John Ystymllyn
    The headstone stands in the churchyard of the church of St Cynhaearn, on the N side of the path from the lychgate.
  • II Lychgate to the Church of St Cynhaearn
    St Cynhaearn stands isolated approximately 900m S of Pentrefelin village. The lychgate stands in front of the churchyard wall and provides the entrance to the rectangular churchyard from the SW.

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