Two houses occupied the site by the late C16. The southerly one was rented out on 14th December 1566 by Gruffydd ap Jenkins ap Res Heire of Cardigan, carpenter, to Fraunces Weilshe of Cardigan, merchant. Philip David, smith, who had leased it from Jenkin ap Res Heire, had formerly occupied it. An annual rent of 6s.8d. was payable to the heirs of Redderch Waren. The northerly property belonged to James Morris, Esq.
David Rees, grocer, may have lived and traded here as early as 1823 and was here in 1830. A large building is shown here on J. Wood’s 1834 map of Cardigan as the property of Mr. Williams. In 1838 Robert Edgar Rees, son of David & Sarah Rees of ‘Tymawr-y-Groes‘ was born here. In 1841 the following persons lived in the two houses here: 1) David Rees, 40, merchant; Sarah Rees, 40, his wife; Elizabeth Rees, 9, their daughter; Margaret Rees, 7, daughter; Jane Rees, 4, daughter; and Robert Rees, 3, son; 2) Thomas Evans, 20, grocer; Peter Jones, 15, grocer’s apprentice; Sarah Davies, 20, servant; and Ann Miles, 15, servant. David Rees remained resident here for some years. It may have been here that a new house was being built in 1843, the footings of which undermined the north wall of the Shire Hall, leading to a collapse. David Rees certainly built a new house here at about that time. John Jenkins, land agent, traded here in 1844-50 and David Evans died here in January 1861 aged 50.
‘Ty Mawr’ was referred to as “unoccupied” in the 1881 Census. By 28th November 1884 the building of “Ty Mawr” was underway to designs by George Morgan of Carmarthen, for Robert Edgar Rees, grocer. J. Williams & Sons, Felingynllo, Llangoedmor, were the builders. By the end of the decade, Robert Edgar Rees was the occupier. In 1891 Robert Edgar Rees, 52, grocer, lived here with his wife Margaret Rees, 45, and Hannah James, 38, servant. In 1893 the property was occupied by the grocery business of Robert Edgar Rees (est. 1823).
In 1894-1921 Dr. James William Stephens and his family lived here. On 12th June 1894 Dr. J. W. Stephens of Tymawr married Miss Dorothy (“Dorah”) Williams of Dronwy, Anglesey. On 5th December 1895 Idwal Stephens was born here. On 1st January 1897 Olwen Stephens, daughter of Dr. J. W. Stephens, was born here. On 23rd July 1900 Deri Stephens was born, the son of Dr. & Mrs. J. W. Stephens. In 1901 the following persons lived here: Dr. James William Stephens, 38, medical practitioner (b. Cilgerran); Dorothy Stephens, 33, his wife (b. Holyhead); Idwal Stephens, 5, their son (b. Cardigan); Olwen Stephens, 4, daughter (b. Cardigan); Deri Stephens, 8 months, son (b. Cardigan); Elizabeth M Williams, 24, sister-in-law (b. Anglesey); Thomas Griffiths, 30 Coachman (b. St. Dogmaels); Hannah James, 45, cook (b. Penbryn, Welsh-speaking); and Hannah J. Phillips, 18, housemaid (b. Cilgerran, Welsh-speaking). Except where noted otherwise, all were bilingual. In May 1907 Dr. J. W. Stephens became a J. P. for North Pembrokeshire. By 1914 Dr. J. W. Stephens was the Officer of Health for Cardigan Borough. On 14th October 1921 Dr James William Stephens of Tymawr died of pneumonia, aged 59.
In 1919-41 Dr. D. Lloyd Davies lived here. In 1922 D. Lloyd Davies became a member of staff at the new Cardigan & District Memorial Hospital. On 16th April 1926 a daughter was born to Dr. & Mrs. D. Lloyd Davies of Tymawr. In 1927-34 Dr. James Coutts also practised here. On 24th August 1934 Dr. James Coutts married Miss Marjorie Corbetta Wigley of Lion Terrace, Pendre. In 1938-40 Dr. & Mrs. D Lloyd-Davies lived here. In November 1941 Ty Mawr was a Residential Hostel. In 1945 Dr. David C. Williams had a surgery here. On 4th July 1948 Dr. T. Moss of Ty Mawr, 29, went missing in a boat from Gwbert. The boat was washed up at Llangrannog on 9th. On 12th October 1949 a daughter was born to Peggy Jones & Dr. Dewi Gwyn Jones of Ty Mawr. In 1949-55 Dr. D. Gwyn Jones and Dr. Harries were based here. In 1952-55 Mrs Peggy Lloyd Jones lived here. In 1974 Dr. D. Gwyn Jones of Ty Mawr was President of Cardigan Agricultural Show.
In 1988 following alterations to the ground floor frontage for G. W. Evans, Ty Mawr became a photographic printers called ‘Fast Print’ and ‘The Print Shop’, and a health food shop, as well as ‘Chambers’ night club. The club was extended in 1990. It was made a listed building in 1992. In 1995-98 Ty Mawr, being vacant and advertised for sale, it was suggested that, together with the Shire Hall, it should be acquired for public use. By 3rd February 1999 it had been sold. Planning permission for major alterations was sought later that year. In June 2002 internal alterations were conducted. Work recommenced in March 2003.
In June 2004 the shop became ‘D. Esigner, Sportswear’ shop, following completion of ground floor and external repairs. In 2004-08 this was ‘D. Esigner Sports’. It was advertised for sale again in March 2007, having been converted for use as a small hotel. The shop ‘D. Esigner Sports’ closed in September 2008. The property changed hands in the autumn of 2009. In May 2010 ‘Belotti’s’ delicatessen and café opened here and traded in 2010-13.
The building was described by CADW in 1992:
“…Circa 1880 substantial house, stucco with hipped slate eaves roof to main part and apex brick corniced stack. Three storeys and attic, one-window main front and recessed wing to left. Said to have been built for Edgar Rees, grocer.
Main front has rusticated ground floor, cornice above, then 3-bay upper floors with narrow blank panels each side of centre window bay. Cornice right across at first floor level and the 4 piers have paired brackets under eaves. First floor big canted oriel with cornices carried around base and head, plate glass sashes and cast-iron floral railing above, in front of second floor tripartite sash. Big stucco eaves dormer, arch-headed. Ground floor has symmetrical shop front with recessed door,remodelled in C20 but in original frame. Stucco returns across plain side wall to Market Lane for half depth, then rubble stone with ashlar window frames.
To left of main front, set back entrance bay with rusticated ground floor, arched doorway with keystone, 6-panel door and plain fanlight, and similar narrow arched sash to each floor above, each with arched hood. Plain parapet. Single-storey shop to left, rusticated with cornice carried across.
INTERIOR – Open-well stair up 2 floors with turned balusters and continuous rail. Patterned tiled floors to ground floor and stained glass roundels to inner hall door…”
ADDITIONAL (2001) – North wall to Market Lane has stuccoed section with first floor timber-framed window and small arched-headed light with leaded glazing, coloured glass (much vandalised) beneath square head. Stone section has 12-pane painted timber sash each floor with ashlar surrounds and sills. Ground floor has blocked opening to right of window. West side has, to rear, single storey rubble lean-to outshut with slate roof and 4-panel timber door to ground floor right. First floor has plate glass sashes with margins with ashlar sills, dressings and arched head with voussoirs. Similar window to second floor and small stone eaves dormer with arched head and ashlar voussoirs, plate glass sash. Set back, to right, similarly structured section with 4-pane sash to second floor, bubble glass sash to first floor. Timber eaves board and cast iron rainwater goods.
INTERIOR – (1998) Exposed beams to attic ceilings. Decorative panelling and ceiling rose to former shop. First floor small marble fireplaces to bedrooms.
ADDITONAL – (2007) – Shop frontage altered with timber surround. Decorative panel and ceiling rose to shop removed.
Map of Cardigan, J Wood 1834
Census Returns 1841; 1881; 1891; 1901
Pigot’s Directory 1844
Hunt’s Directory 1850
Cardigan & Tivy-Side Advertiser 1884; 1893-95; 1897; 1899-1900; 1905; 1907-09; 1911; 1919; 1921; 1925-27; 1929; 1932-35; 1937-38; 1941; 1945; 1948-49; 1998-99
O. S. Map 1887 etc.
Accounts – Rebuilding Blaenywaun, St. Dogmaels 1891
Cardigan Observer 1895
Kelly’s Directory of South Wales 1895; 1914; 1920; 1926
List of Voters – Cardigan 1900; 1910
Annual Report – Tabernacl C. M. Chapel, Cardigan 1901
Register of Electors – Cardigan 1912; 1955
Headed Paper – D Lloyd-Davies, Tymawr 30/11/1932; 1940; 1941
Post Office Telephone Directory 1950; 1953; 1955
Annual Report – Capel Mair 1952
Planning Applications – Ty Mawr 16/05/1988 etc.
Planning Decision – Ty Mawr 24/08/1990
Buildings of Architectural or Historic Interest – Cardigan, CADW 1992
Caring For Cardigan 1998
Cardigan County Agricultural Show, Islwyn & Betty Griffiths 2004.
© Glen K Johnson 11/06/2013