Nantclwyd y Dre, Ruthin

link_to_welsh_translationNantclwyd y Dre, Castle Street, Ruthin

ruthin_nantclwyd_interiorThis black and white house is a remarkable survivor from the decades when Ruthin, like many other Welsh towns, was rebuilt after the destruction wrought by the army of Welsh rebel Owain Glynd┼Ár. Timbers in the house’s earliest part have been carbon dated to 1435 or 1436. At that time the land on which the house stands belonged to weaver Goronwy ap Madog and his English wife Suzanna. Ruthin was a thriving centre for weaving.

In medieval times, one of the house’s residents made a pilgrimage to Rome – recorded in a document which was uncovered during restoration works.

The name Nantclwyd y Dre was probably bestowed on the property in the 1720s. It was home to many influential people over the centuries. From 1834 to 1970, judges lodged here when sitting at the Ruthin assizes. In the late 19th century it was also home to a girls’ school.

In 1925 retired civil engineer Clinton Holme bought the house, where he was already the tenant. He removed the exterior render to expose the timber frames in 1928. The next owner, Samuel Dyer Gough, continued the restoration. His widow sold the house to Clwyd County Council in 1984.

ruthin_nantclwyd_gardenSince 2007 the house has been a museum with rooms fitted out to show how different owners would have lived over the centuries. The photo above right shows the Thelwall study.

The gardens behind the house are even older than the house itself! They were given, with Ruthin Castle, in the 1280s to Reginald de Grey as a reward for helping to suppress rebellion by Prince Llywelyn ap Gruffydd. The gardens supplied fresh fruit, vegetables and herbs to the castle.

In 2016 the Grade II-listed gardens reopened after a £220,000 restoration, thanks to work and funding by the Friends of Nantclwyd y Dre, Denbighshire County Council, Ruthin Town Council and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Postcode: LL15 1DP    View Location Map

Find Nantclwyd y Dre opening times and other information

FOOTNOTES: Previous owners and occupants

1435 - Goronwy ap Madog, weaver, and his English wife Suzanna 
1441 - house leased to John Grey, probably an illegitimate son of a member of the Grey family that held the local lordship
1456 - Geoffrey the Clerk, who wrote and spoke Welsh and English
Late 1480s - John Flixton, clerk, also connected to the Grey family
1490-1 - the house was granted by George Grey, Earl of Kent, to John Holland, coroner, who extended the house
1571 - Thomas Wynn ap John ap Harry, ancestor of the Parry family of Nantclwyd Hall, Llanelidan
c.1600-1627 - Simon Parry, a wealthy London lawyer and son of Thomas Wynn, extended the house
1653 - Simon Parry’s granddaughter, Mary, married lawyer Eubule Thelwall, vice-chamberlain of the palatinate of Chester who also extended the house. Thelwall lived in the house from c.1688 to 1695
1722 - Edward Wynne of Plas Ucha, Llanefydd. 
c.1733 - John Wynne, son of Edward, enlarged the house
c.1850 - Robert Roberts, surgeon
c.1860 - Thomas Prytherch, surgeon, lived in the house and died there in 1862
1862 - Edward Edwards, ironmonger and mayor of Ruthin
1893-1916 - rectory for the parish of Llanfwrog
1925 - Clinton Holme, retired civil engineer
1934 - Samuel Dyer Gough
1984 - Clwyd County Council