The Gregynog Hall of Tregynon

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The historic Gregynog Hall in the village of Tregynon, in Wales, UK, is a large country mansion whose brilliant black-and-white timber-framed façade is actually made of concrete. The original house dated back to the 12th century, and was made of actual wood, but when it was rebuilt in the 1840s by Charles Hanbury-Tracy, the first Baron of Sudeley, it was designed to resemble the half-timbered architecture of a Montgomeryshire farmhouse. In fact, the Gregynog Hall is among the earliest examples of concrete use in building in Britain. The Sudeleys were also pioneers of the use of concrete in the building of new cottages and farmhouses on the Gregynog estate, and many such examples can still be seen in Tregynon and the surrounding countryside.

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Photo credit: Broneirion/Wikimedia

The identify of Gregynog Hall’s original residents are unclear, but from the 15th century to the 19th century it was the home of the Blayney and Hanbury-Tracy families. It passed through several more families, and each time the estate was split and sold to various tenants until the Gregynog estate shrunk from a massive 18,000 acres to mere 750 acres consisting of the mansion surrounded by farms, woodlands and formal gardens.

In 1920, the estate was purchased by the Davies sisters —Margaret and Gwendoline, who intended to make Gregynog a center for the arts, a place where music, crafts and fine art could flourish. Over the following decades Gregynog became a byword for music and printing. The Davies sisters also collected a large number of French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings, which are now on display at a special gallery at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff. In 1933 the Davies sisters launched the Gregynog Music Festival, the oldest classical music festival in Wales still in operation. The also established the Gregynog Press, which still exists under the name of Gwasg Gregynog, and is famous for its limited edition hand-printed books with fine bindings and exquisite wood-engraved illustrations.

When Margaret Davis died in 1960 she gave Gregynog to the University of Wales. Since then the Hall hosts conferences, weddings and even offers accommodation for tourist.

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Photo credit: Mike S/Flickr

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Photo credit: Justin/Flickr

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Photo credit: James F Clay/Flickr

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Photo credit: Plashing Vote/Flickr

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Photo credit: Plashing Vote/Flickr

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Photo credit: Mr Penybanc/Flickr

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Photo credit: www.gregynog.org

Sources: Wikipedia / Britain Express

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