Former Gogerddan Arms, Aberystwyth

button-theme-crimeFormer Gogerddan Arms, Aberystwyth

The earliest section of this building, now home to a SPAR store, was built c.1727. It was an inn called the Gogerddan Arms, owned by the Pryse family of Gogerddan. In 1869 it was extended, gaining a billiard room and concert hall. During the 20th century it was a student hall of residence called Padarn Hall. It was converted into shops and offices in 1990.

In 1730 Alexander Gordon, landlord of the Gogerddan Arms, was appointed mayor of Aberystwyth by the local Court Leet. Decades later, the hotel provided a temporary venue for the Court Leet while the town hall was being rebuilt. A leet was a geographical area of criminal jurisdiction, subdivided into frankpledges – groups of 10 men who were collectively responsible for each group member’s behaviour. The Court Leet would meet once each year to view records from the frankpledges and punish anyone who had misused Crown property.

The Lion Hotel was embroiled in a scandal – mentioned in the House of Commons – after a group of magistrates and other men known as the “Smokey Face Club” met for supper here in 1879. Rather than finish drinking at 11pm, as stipulated by the hotel’s licence, the magistrates signed an order on the spot which authorised the booze-up to continue!

In the 1880s and 1890s the building was known as the Lion Royal Hotel and Gogerddan Arms and had its own four-horse coach. In 1901 the landlord, Rufus Williams, had to pay a fine and costs totalling 10 shillings for allowing some of his guests to play cards for money for almost an entire night.

Among the many lots auctioned at the Lion Hotel was the lease and machinery of the “Bron Floyd Mines” in 1882. The Bronllwyd lead mines, near Penrhyncoch, dated from the c.1600 and were worked again in the 19th century, closing in 1892.

Postcode: SY23 1DE    View Location Map

Website of SPAR store