Links that may be of interest
This is a new page, to which we intend to add links to other websites that may be of interest.
The Radnorshire Society, founded in 1930, is a wonderful organisation that is concerned with the history and archaeology of the historic county of Radnorshire, which with Montgomeryshire and Breconshire is now a part of the modern county of Powys.
Those interested in Radnorshire’s history and Rhwng Gwy a Hafren will enjoy Volume LXXVIII and LXXIX of the The Transactions of the Radnorshire Society - the reason is that these two are almost entirely dedicated to a two-part English translation of Ffransis Payne’s wonderful Crwydro Sir Faesyfed (‘Exploring Radnorshire’). It is a treasure that until now had never been translated from its Welsh text, and we have Dafydd y Garth (i.e. Dai Hawkins) to thank for it, along with The Radnorshire Society who published it.
This website provides some interesting details on the Beamond family of Bacheldre (originally Bachelltref), in the parish of Churchstoke next to that of Ceri (Kerry), Montgomeryshire. The Beamonds descend from Hoedlyw ap Cadwgan ab Elystan. The website features a translation of a medieval poem from Gwaith Owain ap Llywelyn ab y Moel entitled In Praise of Cadwaladr ap Gruffudd of Bachelldref and some illustrations including a coat of arms from one of the heralds visitations.
A great place from which to base a visit to the land of Rhwng Gwy a Hafren, and the Welsh Marches generally, including the Shropshire & Herefordshire borders.
The Lion was the hub of all activities during the 2010 gathering to mark Elystan Glodrydd 1000, and the family who run it are descendants of Elystan and can advise on what to do and where to visit nearby. The village church of St. Cynllo, Llanbister is the Mother Church of Maelienydd, and has very strong historical connections with the Princes of Maelienydd who were descended from Elystan.
The Lion even has bedrooms named ‘Elystan’, ‘Maelienydd’ and ‘Dorddu’, after Phylip Dorddu, the patriarch of a particularly notable and vibrant branch of Elystan’s family, who were very influential in Radnorshire in fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. As a result they were collectively referred to by the poets as the ‘Tordduaid’, Iolo Goch, writing in the late 14th Century spoke of them as being people of ‘great nobility’. The Thomas’s are members of the ‘Tordduaid’.
Website with information about the village, parish and environs of this site of the historic ruins of the Cistercian Abbey Cwm Hir, originally said to have been founded in 1143 by three brothers, the sons of Madog ab Idnerth: Cadwallon ap Madog, Prince of Maelienydd, Einion Clud, Prince of Elfael and Maredudd ap Madog. For whatever reason, the Abbey had (in effect) to be re-founded by Cadwallon in 1176.
The History Forum for Wales features a page on their website about Abbey Cwmhir, visible
The Trust was set up by Dr John H. Davies, who has been its Chairman for many years. It is dedicated to the Abbey, its history and its physical remains. In more recent years the Trust has supported Cadw in gaining funding from the Welsh Cultural Heritage Initiative to create an area of car parking for visitors in front of the next door farm and converted an outbuilding into a small interpretation centre. Cadw also led a programme of conservation on the masonry foundations in the 1990s.
Paul M. Remfry - historian
Paul Remfry has probably done more research into, and written more about the native Welsh dynasties of Rhwng Gwy a Hafren than any historian before him, and some of his books are full of rich detail about the descendants of Elystan Glodrydd.
Of particular note are these:
- The Native Dynasties of Rhwng Gwy a Hafren 1066-1282
- The Castles & History of Radnorshire (2nd edition, 2008)
- The Political History of Abbey Cwmhir and its early Patrons, 1177-1282
- A Political Chronology of Wales 1066 to 1282
- The Annales Cambriae (the only English translation, including all five annals)
Paul has now embarked on a translation into modern English of the Wigmore Chronicle, which runs from 1066 to 1306, 1349 and 1355 to 1377. Bearing in mind the importance of the history of the Mortimer family of Wigmore in relation to Rhwng Gwy a Hafren and the family’s frequent interaction with the native Welsh dynasty of Elystan Glodrydd, the result of Paul’s work is bound to produce new information that will be of interest.
To be kept up to date with news about this project and its future publication see:
We have no idea who this blogger is, but there is no doubt that its the best blog about Radnorshire that exists. The blog is described on its front-page as “Mainly historical trivia from Radnorshire with maybe a little less Old Time Motor Sport than in the past and a few more rants.” On its pages, alongside motor sport, local history, geography and just about anything interesting from Radnorshire, you also will find the richest collection of translated medieval bardic poetry relating to Radnorshire and its people anywhere on the web and probably more than exists in any published books; naturally many of these include mention of local families descended from Elystan.
The Mortimer History Society has taken off successfully and very quickly since its launch in 2009 and now has more than 100 members. Its website is a good source of material on the family, whose history and fate was so entwined with that of the descendants of Elystan. This explains the design of the coat of arms for Radnorshire (see on previous pages). It is therefore in a spirit of magnanimity and forgiveness, with so much historical water having passed under the metaphorical bridge, that we are pleased to add this helpful link. The Mortimers were the hereditary enemies of the dynasty founded by Elystan and the two fought over possession of Maelienydd and adjoining parts of Rhwng Gwy a Hafren over more than two hundred years. It is more than probable that from time to time some of the family acted on the side of the Mortimers depending on which way the political wind was blowing or as necessity required and also as part of the intermittent raising of troops from Maelienydd by the Mortimers. Men from Maelienydd no doubt served in the armies of the Mortimer-Yorkists and then later also in the Lancastrian army of Henry Tudor.