Wern Isaf, Llanfairfechan
The plans for this iconic house were formulated while Herbert North was working in London as first assistant to the architect Sir Edwin Lutyens. The house was named Rosebriars but built on a plot of land called Wern Isaf (meaning Lower or Bottom Grove). The house was renamed Wern Isaf following Herbert North's death in 1941.
Herbert North oversaw the house’s construction on his visits home, and occupied the completed house with his wife and daughter after he returned to Llanfairfechan in 1901 to practise locally.
Wern Isaf is a beautiful example of Arts and Crafts design. It was built to a butterfly plan to make use of daylight to illuminate different rooms appropriately to their use. Herbert North knew and corresponded with William Morris & Co, the firm established by the influential Victorian designer to produce wallpapers and textiles. Examples of the company’s work are to be found in the house.
Herbert North favoured natural design, and the garden was modelled to retain a deliberate wild or natural state with a brook running through. The garden has retained that quality to this day. In the grounds is a cottage which was built as a garage and chauffeur’s accommodation.
Wern Isaf is occupied by Herbert North’s granddaughter and family and is open to the public twice a year for a fortnight for visits by appointment. Details of when you can visit may be available from the local library service. Please do not enter the grounds unless you have an appointment.
With thanks to Andrew Hinchliff and Pam Phillips
Postcode: LL33 0RN