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Latitude: 53.0146 / 53°0'52"N
Longitude: -4.363 / 4°21'46"W
OS Eastings: 241579
OS Northings: 348980
OS Grid: SH415489
Mapcode National: GBR 5D.G2NC
Mapcode Global: WH43Y.YHK8
Entry Name: Pen yr allt uchaf
Listing Date: 30 September 2005
Last Amended: 30 September 2005
Source ID: 84996
Building Class: Agriculture and Subsistence
Location: On the northern slopes of Bwlch Mawr, towards the upper limits of the enclosed land approx. 0.75 km due south of Clynnog, accessed by bridle-way from the village towards open grazing of the mountain.
Traditional County: Caernarfonshire
Pen yr allt uchaf is one of a number of small farmsteads and smallholdings established around the fringes of Bwlch Mawr. Whereas some of these have the appearance of late C18 or early C19 encroachments, the small, irregular field system which surrounds Pen yr allt uchaf and the nearby Pen yr allt isaf may suggest earlier origins. The buildings themselves, however, are probably largely of the early C19, though it is possible that an earlier house is incorporated within them. On the Tithe Map and survey of 1843, both farmsteads were in the ownership of Lord Newborough of Glynllifon. Pen yr allt uchaf was a farm of 39 acres, then occupied by Mary Jones. The central building of the range may be the earliest of the group, and was clearly also originally a dwelling. Perhaps it was replaced by the present house, and partially reconstructed as a farm-building, or perhaps for a time there were two houses on the holding. The barn was clearly added to it in the later C19, and the mill building added to the barn; it is possible that the holding originated as a cottage, and was only later established as a separate farmstead.
The farmstead was disused and in poor condition on inspection, July 2005.
The main farm range is at right-angles to the line of slope, and there is an associated farm range set back at some distance to its rear.
Small linear farmstead, comprising single storeyed dwelling at the right-hand end of the row, apparently abutting a second dwelling latterly used for stock. Built onto this is a small barn in line at the end of the row, and a feed-mill which forms an advanced wing at the front. All local rubble stone, some roughly dressed, but mostly boulders, probably the result of field clearance. Front elevation of house and former house only limewashed. Slate roofs with notably small slates bedded in mortar, except for the barn, where the small slates are not bedded, and the mill, which has evenly sized slates of later C19 character.
House has near-central entrance offset to left flanked by small sash windows (that to right retaining 9-pane sash). Small cast-iron roof-light towards right of roof. Large stacks at each gable, with drip-moulds (that to left served former house at centre of range). Unusually deep continuous outshut to rear, along the length of the house. Former house alongside also has near-central doorway and small window to its right - wall to left of door obscured by later feed-mill. This has narrow outshut on its SW elevation, with doorway alongside, and retains undershot wheel in a shallow wheel-pit against the gable end (this is fed by a leat which runs alongside the track from the mountain before running under the farmyard). Beyond the mill, the barn has small doorway towards its right gable end, aligned with wider doorway in rear elevation.
The house has a two room plan and is fully lofted. Small, steep central stair with turned newel, but it is clear that the original arrangement was for a croglofft over the parlour bay only - the collar on the truss is a later replacement, raised to accommodate the inserted floor over the hall. Truss itself has feet bedded into wall and is halved and pinned at the apex. Roof timbers all limewashed. Hall has wide fireplace with cambered lintel, and inset cast-iron range; remains of slate slabs in outshut.
The former house alongside also has fireplace with curved bressumer, but there are otherwise no traces of domestic subdivision, and the wooden feed rack and trough along the rear wall suggest that it had long been used for housing stock. The roof truss has high-set collar and minimally jointed apex - it appears more recent than that in the house, suggesting a later rebuild. Barn has wide span with king-post truss of later C19 type, and small opening connecting to the mill, which retains cog-wheel internally but no other machinery.
Listed as a particularly good example of a traditional small upland farmstead, which retains good vernacular character in the details of its construction and layout. The layout is notably complete, and retains a rare surviving example of a small farm-mill with in-situ water wheel.
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