Grave of John Jones, Conwy

Grave of John Jones

John Jones (d.1865)

The career of John Jones, buried here with his son and wife Eleanor, reflects that he lived through the biggest changes in Conwy since the castle and town walls were built. Steam-powered trains hadn’t been invented when he was a child, but his last job was as master of the new Colwyn station.

The first person buried here was his 7-year-old son John (d.1847). John’s memorial inscription describes the father as “Captain John Jones of Liverpool Arms of this town”. He was landlord of the Liverpool Arms, Conwy quay, from 1828 to 1851. He was also captain of the packet boat which plied between Conwy and Liverpool, hence the pub’s name. He encouraged tourists to travel to Conwy, pointed them towards his pub, and took them home afterwards. The stone quay we see today was built during his tenure, in 1833.

Conwy was already changing fast, not least with the coaches that rolled over Telford’s new Cob and suspension bridge, but there was further transformation when the railway opened in 1848 and Conwy’s significance as a “port” (as it’s described on several tombstones) started to decline. John Jones became station master at Colwyn. The station was renamed Colwyn Bay in 1876. He died aged 70 on 7 March 1865.

This tombstone is one of several in the churchyard with an English inscription and Welsh poem, in this case an englyn (a four-line verse form unique to Welsh). The poem, for the lost child, translates as:

From the land of lamentations – to Canaan
He climbed early
In complete peace, he rejoices
Above anguish and death’s wound.

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