The name means ‘End of the Black Wood’. The property was recorded in 1603 as “…tythen penn yr allt dduy…” It was recorded again in 1614 and 1642. In the early 17th Century William Bradshaw of St. Dogmaels Abbey may have lived here for a time, and married a daughter of Trefigyn, Monington. On 24th October 1682 William Thomas of Bridell wrote his will, referring to his second son, Griffith William, of Penraltddu. In 1740 John Lewis of Tredefaid granted this, his property, to his son, Thomas Lewis.
On 10th March 1768 a lease for 21 years of Penralltddy was agreed between William Williams of Trefach, Pembrokeshire, and Stephen Williams of Llantood. The rent was to be £15 per annum, plus four fat pullets at Shrovetide yearly and a barrel of coal to be delivered to the dwelling house of William Williams. The farmhouse was built in 1773. In 1777-1826 John Williams lived here. In 1777 there was a marriage settlement between John Williams and Mary Edward of Bridell. In April 1782 land here belonged to John Symmons of Slebech. In 1785 Thomas Williams, son of John and Esther Williams, was baptised. In 1786-97 William Williams was the owner and John Williams was the tenant. In 1788 Daniel Williams, son of John and Esther Williams, was baptised. In 1791 William Williams, son of the same couple, was baptised. In 1793 Caleb Williams, another son of John and Esther Williams, was baptised. On 26th August 1796 Stephen Williams, son of John Williams, died aged 23. On 20th August 1798 Owen Williams, son of John Williams, died aged 21. In 1801-03 Dorothy Williams was the owner. Building work was undertaken here in 1803. On 13th April 1816 Morris Williams, son of John Williams, a Corporal in the 23rd Regiment, died in France aged 29. In 1820 the property may have been part of the Clynfiew estate. The farmhouse was rebuilt in 1826 and a plaque there reads “T. Bowen Esq./J. Bowen/J.W./1826”. On 11th August 1826 John Williams of Penralltddu, farmer, wrote his will. He referred to his son Thomas Williams; son Caleb Williams, captain of a sloop; son Daniel Williams; and son William Williams. On 30th September 1826 John Williams died aged 80.
A new barn and cow-house were erected here in 1838. In 1838 Penralltddu was owned by John Bowen, M. D., and Thomas Bowen, and was occupied by William Williams. On 6th March 1839 William Williams died aged 49. In 1839-51 Lettice Williams, widow, lived here. In 1841 the following persons lived here: Lettice Williams, 45, widow; John Williams, 15, her son; Mary Williams, 10, daughter; Stephen Williams, 10, son; Owen Williams, 9, son; Morris Williams, 7, son; Thomas Williams, 4, son; Esther Williams, 2, daughter; and three servants. On 5th February 1845 Mary Williams of Penralltddu was buried at Llantood Church, having died aged 18. On 10th January 1847 Ann Williams of Penralltddu was buried at Llantood Church, having died aged 20. On 10th April 1848 Morris Morris of Broyan Mill died here aged 51. On 16th May 1848 Owen Williams of Penralltddu died aged 18. In 1851 the following persons lived here: Lettice Williams, 55, farmer of 155 acres; John Williams, 26, her son; Stephen Williams, 21, son; Morris Williams, 16, son; Thomas Williams, 14, son; Esther Williams, 11, daughter; and 4 servants – Mary Thomas, 28; Ann Rowlands, 19; John Davis, 19; and William Sandbrook, 17. On 13th December 1851 Lettice Williams nee’ Morris, widow of William Williams, died aged 56.
On 14th February 1852 Stephen Williams, son of William & Lettice Williams died aged 23. On 27th March 1853 Morris Williams of Penralltddu died aged 18. On 9th October 1853 John Williams of Penralltddu died aged 28. Thomas Williams probably became the farmer from that date. Outbuildings were erected here in 1859 by J. W. Bowen, plus a large new estate farmhouse in 1861. In 1861-98 Thomas Williams lived here. In 1861 Thomas Williams, 24, lived here with four servants – Thomas Griffiths, 30, carter; Thomas Thomas, 10, shepherd; Anne Morris, 27, house servant; and Anne Davies, 23, dairy maid. In 1871 the following persons lived here: Thomas Williams, 34; Elizabeth Williams, his wife; William Williams, 6, son; and servants – William Morris, 20; William Evans, 12; Eliza Phillips, 19; and Margaret Jones, 19.
In 1875 Rev. G. Griffiths and Thomas Williams lived here. In 1877 repairs were carried out to the outbuildings. In 1881 this was part of James William Bowen’s Plasybridell estate (Bridell). In 1881 the following persons lived here: Thomas Williams, 44, farmer of 160 acres; Elizabeth Williams, 37, his wife; William John Williams, 16, son; Joseph Williams, 18, nephew; Daniel Owens, 24, servant; James Bowen, 29, servant; and Martha Rees, 37, servant. In 1885 Thomas Williams was a Guardian of the Poor. In 1891 the following persons lived here: Thomas Williams, 54, farmer; Elizabeth Williams, 49, his wife; William John Williams, 26, their son, solicitor; Joseph Williams, 28, servant; and Joshua Thomas, 16, farm servant. In 1891 William John Williams stood in the Cardigan municipal election. On 14th November 1894 Joseph Williams of Penralltddu married Miss Dinah Owens of Felinganol. On 9th November 1896 William John Williams became the Mayor of Cardigan. On 12th February 1897 a silver cradle was presented to William John Williams, Mayor, in celebration of his newborn son. It was inscribed: “Presented by the Corporation of Cardigan to William John Williams Esq. Mayor, during his year of office, 1897.” In 1897 Thomas Williams was a Rural District Councillor. On 1st March 1898 Thomas Williams died aged 62.
In 1901 the following persons lived here: Elizabeth Williams, 57, widow, farmer (b. Meline, Welsh-speaking); Phoebe Williams, 84, mother (b. Meline, bilingual); Robert Morris, 62, agricultural labourer (b. Llantood, Welsh-speaking); Mary E. Thomas, 21, general servant (b. Bridell, bilingual); and Evan Thomas, 13, servant (b. Bridell, bilingual). On 12th June 1904 Elizabeth Williams, widow of Thomas Williams, died here aged 61. On 30th September 1909 there was a sale of contents at Penralltddu.
On 1st January 1910 William Rowland Volk George, son of Evan & Margaret Ann George of Penralltddu, was baptised at Bridell Church. In 1910-40 Evan George was the farmer. On 25th March 1926 Mrs. Esther George died here at the home of her son, Evan George. She was 95, and the widow of William George, who had farmed Trecwn, St. Dogmaels. On 17th March 1928 Margaret Ann George, wife of Evan George of Penralltddu, died aged 54 on 17th March 1928. In 1934-53 Mr. W. R. V. George lived here. In 1940 Evan George, Mr. & Mrs. W. George and Mrs. A. Thomas lived here. In 1940-48 Willie George lived here. In April 1947 Mr. W. V. George of Penralltddu was a J. P. at the age of 37. In January 1950 Mr. W. R. V. George retired from Cemaes Rural District Council. In May 1954 Penralltddu was sold with a 5-bedroom house and 97 acres.
In 1994 the house, old house and outbuildings were all made listed buildings.
The property was described by CADW in 1994:
“…Dated 1861, large estate farmhouse built for J W Bowen. Grey squared stone with rockfaced quoins and yellow ashlar dressings. Slate eaves roofs with fretted bargeboards and paired end stone stacks. Two storeys, with large rear wing. Plinth with ashlar coping at ground floor sill level, ashlar moulded stringcourse. Windows with chamfered ashlar jambs, sandstone voussoirs and slate sills. Three-window front with big gabled projecting centrepiece. Paired plate glass sashes. Centre has pointed arched entry with ‘jwb 1861’ on keystone, arched window to each side wall, panelled door within and radiating-bar fanlight, first floor paired sashes and attic pair of narrow vents. Left side façade is stuccoed, lined as ashlar, although the rest is of exposed stone. E end wall has single sash each floor and pair of vents in the gable. Rear wing has a very large end stack, E side big stair-light, door with traceried overlight, and paired sash each floor to right, the lower sashes 8-pane. W side is outshut with two-window range of 6-pane sashes.
Front garden is enclosed by spearhead iron railings on low brick wall coped in slate.
OUTBUILDING TO REAR OF FARMHOUSE – Circa 1861 outside kitchen or dairy, in coursed Cilgerran stone with slate eaves roof and two cut-stone end stacks. Two storeys, cut-stone voussoirs to window and door heads. One first floor 6-pane window to left with painted slate sill, ground floor window to left divided into three narrow lights, and ledged door to right with overlight. Similar 3-light window on E end wall and two similar on rear wall. Outside stone stairs on W end to loft door.
FORMER FARMHOUSE – 1826 farmhouse converted to outbuilding after 1861, and incorporating datestones of an earlier building. Rubble stone with slate roof, no main chimneys and outshut rear with brick N end stack. Two-storey front, off-set to left, with three-window range of openings with cambered heads and stone voussoirs. Centre first floor window is blocked, centre ground floor window has been narrowed, first floor left window has been widened. Over the centre ground floor window is a plaque ‘T Bowen Esq/J Bowen MD/ J W/1826’, to left is plaque ‘DW/JW 1803’ and to right plaque ‘WWE/JW 1773’. Each end has stone outside stairs to loft door. Interior has been remodelled as outbuilding, with C19 loft floor, no stairs and removed fireplaces. One fireplace with timber lintel in outshut.
OUTBUILDING ON E SIDE OF FARM COURT – 1838 and later C19 barn and lofted cow-house. Rubble stone with slate roofs. 1838 range to left has two doors with cut-stone voussoirs to cambered heads, voussoirs of left door in Cilgerran slate and to right door of sandstone. One loop between. Over the left door is a diamond plaque ‘J Bowen Esq. Built 1838’. To left of plaque is projecting iron wheel for belt-driven machinery. Single interior space with tie-beam and collar trusses. Rear door with sandstone voussoirs and C20 opening. Range to right is stepped down slope with lower roof, two loft openings under eaves and central door with cambered head and sandstone voussoirs. Stable door. One loop each side. Lean-to on S end.
OUTBUILDING ON E SIDE OF DRIVE – 1859 and 1877 outbuilding, in squared grey stone with slate roofs. The main range, facing W, is dated 1877, and has coach-house to left with single elliptical-arched entry and then two casement pairs alternated with two ledged doors with overlights. Date plaque between first window and door. Red brick ridge stack. This range buts on to the rear of a S facing open-fronted cart-shed, with datestone ‘J W Bowen Esq. Blt 1859’ in W gable. Front has three iron columns remaining from original six…”
NLW Cilciffeth MS 245
NLW Clynfiew MSs
NLW Eaton Evans & Williams MS 11072
Ceredigion Archives: MUS/59
Land Tax Lists for Llantood 1786-1803
Pembrokeshire Record Office: Abstract of Wills 1826
Tithe Map of Llantood 1838
Census Returns 1841; 1851; 1861; 1871; 1881; 1891; 1901
Poster – List of the Board of Guardians, Cardigan Union 28/04/1885
Accounts – Rebuilding Blaenywaun, St Dogmaels 1891
Ballot Paper – Cardigan Municipal Election 1891
Cardigan & Tivy-Side Advertiser 1894; 1896-98; 1904; 1909; 1919; 1926; 1928; 1934; 1937; 1941;
1944; 1947-48; 1954; 2002
Bridell Parish Registers
Penybryn Baptist Chapel Annual Report 1911
Kelly’s Directory of South Wales 1926
Post Office Telephone Directory 1950; 1955
Programme of Coracle Races, Cilgerran 1953
Official Programme – National Eisteddfod 1976
Programme – Cardigan Fat Stock & Poultry Show 1980
Buildings of Architectural or Historic Interest – Cilgerran, J Orbach, CADW
The Place Names of Pembrokeshire, B G Charles 1993
Cardigan Annual Show Catalogue 02/08/1995
The Phone Book 2003.
(c) Glen K Johnson 25/06/2013