Extensive Landowners

The Lewis family bought and owned many properties in and around Glamorgan as well as England. They were very wealthy and powerful and showed this through their land ownership. Some of the properties around Van Mansion were obtained through marriage and ended up as part of the Plymouth and Windsor Estates.

 

Today we can see and visit  St Fagan's and Llancaiach Fawr which were once part of the Lewis's  vast estate. 

Caerphilly Castle

This plaque shows that stones from Caerphilly Castle were used to extend Van Mansion as well as surrounding property. In 1583, Thomas Lewis was granted a lease by the Earl of Pembroke and given permission to take stone from the ruined castle. It is believed that stone was used from the gatehouse and the dressed stone quoits were from the outside of the banqueting hall.

Another link was that in 1530, a year after Edward Lewis purchased Van Mansion, he became joint Constable of the Castle along with Thomas Bassett but in 1541 he became sole Constable under Henry, Earl of Worcester.

 

St Fagan's Castle

In 1616 Sir Edward Lewis bought St Fagan's Castle estate which was then owned by William Herbert. In St Fagan's castle the  letters E.L. 1630 (Edward Lewis) can be seen on the fire screen in the drawing room. 

St Fagan's Castle is now a living museum which shows life through the ages. It is know as the Welsh Folk Museum or Natural History Museum.

Click on the picture to find out more about it.

 

Llancaiach Fawr

At some point possibly after an incident involving the murder of a kinsman of Edward Lewis apparently by a servant of Edward Prichard, the Lewis and Prichard sides of the family appear to have fallen out with each other leading to brawls – on one occasion in Gelligaer Church! Anne Lewis, daughter of Thomas Lewis, married Edward Pritchard of Llancaiach Fawr in 1578 and so united the Pritchard and Lewis families.

Click on the photograph to find out more about visiting the museum.

Beautiful Title

Lewis School Pengam

In his will, 19th March 1715, Edward Lewis of Gilfach Fargoed, grandson of Sir William Lewis, left lands and properties to set up a school for poor boys. Lewis School Pengam and Lewis Girls school Ystrad Mynach owe their existence in the first place to the Edward Lewis bequest.

The schools are still going today but Lewis School is no longer on the original site. In 1973,  a Lewis Trust Fund helped students get grants to help them with their tuition.

The New House

Around 1735 - From the ashes of Dan-y-Ddraenen farmhouse came The New House. New House is a grade 2 listed building and was built around 1735 by Thomas Lewis of nearby Llanishen Cardiff. The Lewis’ were wealthy landowners and trace back to Tudor times. They owned many houses and the family spread out over the region. At one time they owned St. Fagans Castle, they had a large house at Caerphilly ( Caerffili) – Y Fan, Cardiff – Lewis House in St. Mary Street, Heath – a large house on the heath (near the hospital). New House may have been a hunting lodge originally, with its direct entrance hallway with typical Georgian Marble Floor.The New House, Llanishen is now a hotel. It is situated just over Caerphilly Mountain.

 

New House passed, through the marriage of Charlotte Wyndham Lewis with Colonel William Murray Threipland, to the Murray Threiplands late in the 19th Century. 

Click on the photograph to find out more about the history of The New House and the Lewis Family.

Around 1735 - From the ashes of Dan-y-Ddraenen farmhouse came The New House. New House is a grade 2 listed building and was built around 1735 by Thomas Lewis of nearby Llanishen Cardiff. The Lewis’ were wealthy landowners and trace back to Tudor times. They owned many houses and the family spread out over the region. At one time they owned St. Fagans Castle, they had a large house at Caerphilly ( Caerffili) – Y Fan, Cardiff – Lewis House in St. Mary Street, Heath – a large house on the heath (near the hospital). New House may have been a hunting lodge originally, with its direct entrance hallway with typical Georgian Marble Floor.The New House, Llanishen is now a hotel. It is situated just over Caerphilly Mountain.

 

New House passed, through the marriage of Charlotte Wyndham Lewis with Colonel William Murray Threipland, to the Murray Threiplands late in the 19th Century. 

Click on the photograph to find out more about the history of The New House and the Lewis Family.

Industrial Links

Thomas Lewis (Industrialist)

Career Born into a landed family from Llanishen, Thomas Lewis became an iron-master. He already owned the Pentyrch blast furnace and several small forges when he became a partner in Dowlais Ironworks in 1759. Lewis was the partner who arranged the mineral leases and construction of the new ironworks: the works were carried out by his business, Thomas Lewis & Co. He headed the business and his family interest was not bought out until 1848. He was also a partner in the firm of Coles, Lewis & Co which had interests at Melin-y-cwrt and Ynys-y-gerwn. Lewis's family had lived at Llanishen for many generations but he was responsible for building the New House there. He was clearly a highly respected individual and served as High Sheriff of Glamorgan in 1757. He died in 1764.