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A Grade II Listed Building in Llanynys, Denbighshire

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Latitude: 53.1332 / 53°7'59"N

Longitude: -3.319 / 3°19'8"W

OS Eastings: 311853

OS Northings: 360368

OS Grid: SJ118603

Mapcode National: GBR 6R.6Q91

Mapcode Global: WH778.ZHQX

Entry Name: Plas-y-Ward

Listing Date: 18 August 1999

Last Amended: 18 August 1999

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 22150

Building Class: Domestic

Location: Located towards the eastern boundary of the community, approximately 1.6km E of the village of Rhewl; accessed via a tree-lined drive running E from a lane approaching from the former railway.

County: Denbighshire

Town: Ruthin

Community: Llanynys

Community: Llanynys

Locality: Rhewl

Traditional County: Denbighshire

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The Thelwalls of Plas-y-Ward were amongst the foremost Denbighshire families during the C16 and C17. Originally from Cheshire, one John Thelwall is said to have come to Ruthin in the service of Lord Reginald de Grey and established himself at Plas-y-Ward c1380. By the early Tudor period the Thelwalls were an established gentry family in the locality. Richard Thelwall was appointed one of the Queen's commissioners at the famous Caerwys Eisteddfod of 1568 and famously died during the event. The infamous Simon Thelwall (d.1586) served as member of the Council of the Marches and Deputy Judge to the Court of the Marches. He is remembered, in his latter capacity, as a cruel and merciless persecutor of Catholics. Katherine of Berain, 'Mam Cymru' (the Mother of Wales), cousin to Queen Elizabeth, lived at Plas-y-Ward from 1586 until her death in 1591 as wife of Edward Thelwall. Various Thelwalls of Plas-y-Ward are recorded as having served as High sheriffs of Denbighshire in 1572, 1590, 1612 and 1670.

The present Plas-y-Ward represents a late C17 replacement of the timber-framed Tudor seat. The new house appears to have been built by Sir William Williams, second baronet of Glascoed, who married the Thelwall heiress, Jane, in 1689. Sir William served as High Sheriff of Denbighshire in 1696.


Two-and-a-half storey double-pile gentry house; of roughcast brick construction with projecting and gabled end chimneys to each range, the stacks unrendered. Slate roof with sandstone copings and shaped kneelers to gable parapets. The facade has a main symmetrical section of 5 bays, with a central entrance with simple late C19 wooden open porch; C19 four-panel door with rectangular 2-pane overlight. Near-flush 4-pane C19 sashes with marginal glazing to the ground and first floors; 3 hipped dormers to the attic with similar, squatter windows. A flush single-storey C19 lean-to addition adjoins to the R. This has a large 6-pane early C20 window to the front and a 12-pane sash to the side. Extruded in the angle between this and the rear gable end of the main house is a modern uPVC conservatory addition.

The rear elevation is near-symmetrical and has a central entrance with original 2-panel door; ovolo-moulded pegged oak frame and simple late C19 canopy porch. Above the entrance is a plain 6-pane cross-window, placed between the ground and first floors to light the stair landing; similar cross-windows to the ground and first floors, with 3 gabled dormers to the roof, as before (undergoing restoration at time of survey). A C19 slated lean-to service addition adjoins the centre of the N side.


Entrance hall with oak dado panelling made up from re-used early C17 small-field panelling; arcaded frieze decoration. Original late C17 oak dog-leg stair with square newels and turned balusters. In the ground-floor front-facing room are two primary boarded niches to the rear wall, together with a neo-Tudor stone fireplace.

Reasons for Listing

Listed for its special interest as a late C17 gentry house, the seat of the locally-important Thelwall family, retaining good external character.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Barn at Plas-y-Ward
    Located approximately 100m W of Plas-y-Ward, enclosing the main farmyard on the S side.
  • II T-shaped Agricultural Complex at Plas-y-Ward
    Partly enclosing a farmyard 100m NW of Plas-y-Ward.
  • II Former Mill at Melin-y-Wern
    Located at the NW boundary of the community approximately 100m SW of Melin-y-Wern; accessed via a track running SW froma lane leading off the B 5429.
  • II Pont Telpyn (partly in Llangynhafal community)
    Spanning the river Clwyd at the eastern boundary of the community approximately 1.5km E of Rhewl village.
  • II Pont Telpyn
    Carrying a minor road over the River Clwyd, about 1km south of St Hychan's church.
  • II Road Bridge 100m W of Pont Telpyn
    Located to the W of Pont Telpyn approximately 1.4km E of Rhewl village; formerly spanning a tributary of the river Clwyd.
  • II Glan Clwyd
    Located approximately 1km NE of the village of Rhewl at the eastern boundary of the community; accessed via a drive running NE off a lane leading NW from Pont Telpyn.
  • II Rhewl Chapel and Manse
    Located in the centre of the village in a narrow lane 50m E of the school; set back behind low rubble forecourt walls and with a cemetary to the side and rear.

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