St Fagan’s National History Museum also known as the Museum of Welsh Life is located just outside of Cardiff to the west of the City. It is set in the 100 acre grounds of St Fagan’s Castle, an Elizabethan manor house dating from the 16th century.
It is mainly an open air museum which seeks to preserve traditional historic rural buildings. The museum has over forty such buildings which have been dismantled with great care from their original sites in various parts of Wales, and have been reconstructed stone by stone, brick by brick within St Fagan’s village. Each building has then been meticulously decorated and furnished to show how people lived during certain eras in rural Wales.
Kennixton is a typical farmhouse from Llangennith, the Gower in South Wales, dating from 1610.
Inside it is furnished with items from the 18th century.
A conical pigsty
Melin Bompren Cornmill built in 1853 from Cross Inn, New Quay, Ceredigion (Cardiganshire).
Hendre’r-ywydd Uchaf Farmhouse built in 1508 from Llangynhafal, Clwyd (Denbighshire).
Abernodwydd Farmhouse – A timber-framed thatched farmhouse, built in 1678, from Llangadfan, Powys (Montgomeryshire)
Garreg Fawr Farmhouse was built in 1544 from Waunfawr, Gwynedd (Caernarfonshire).
A Tollhouse built in 1771 from Aberystwyth that stood on a private or turnpike road.
Six terraced houses named Rhyd-y-car – dating from 1795, built to accommodate iron ore miners. These have been furnished in the style of various eras: 1805, 1855, 1895, 1925, 1955 and 1985.
A Cockpit, dating from the 17th century, from the Hawk and Buckle Inn, Denbigh.
A tiny two-roomed building, built of brick in 1936, it is said to have been the smallest free-standing post office in Wales. From Blaen-waun, Whitland, Carmarthenshire.
A small country school from Maestir, Lampeter, Ceredigion (Cardiganshire). Built in 1880.
St Teilo’s Church dates from the late 12th century and came from Llandeilo Tal-y-bont, Glamorgan. The interior is decorated with replica medieval paintings.
Oakdale Workmen’s Institute from Oakdale, Gwent (Monmouthshire)
Derwin Bakehouse from Aberystwyth. You can buy freshly baked bread here and scones.
Gwalia Stores from Ogmore Vale, Glamorgan.
There is also a traditional fairground, which my little grandson Aneurin enjoyed very much.
Llwyn-yr –Eos is an example of a small working Farm with typical Welsh breeds of livestock. It was lambing season !!! Below are some newborn lambs.
There are woodland paths to follow and a hide for birdwatching.
St Fagan’s Elizabethan Manor House and its ornamental gardens and lake. As it was early springtime there were many daffodils in flower.
Aneurin particularly enjoyed watching the ducks as they dived and dabbled.
St Fagans is a wonderful place to visit and is suitable for all ages. There is so much to explore, you could never see it all in just one day. The best thing of all is that entrance is entirely free and parking is just £5 per day. Highly recommended !!!
* photos by Melinda Abbott
All other photos by me © Louise Shapcott
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