A Norman castle – 19th-century style
Penrhyn Castle is not as it first appears. Although there was a medieval fortified house here (built in the 13th century by Ednyfed Fychan and re-fortified in 1438 by Ioan ap Gruffudd), the present castle is only Norman in style. The work of architect Thomas Hopper, it was built between 1819 and 1835, during the Norman, or Romanesque, Revival. Costs were met by George Hay Dawkins Pennant, using family money gained from Jamaican sugar plantations and local slate-quarrying. The National Trust now runs the property.
Queen Victoria stayed at Penrhyn Castle in 1859, in a slate bed made especially for her – it weighs one ton! The house contains great examples of mock-Norman furniture, impressive carvings and plasterwork, as well as a superb collection of paintings. Don’t forget to visit the restored kitchens to see the enormous operation involved in feeding a grand Victorian household.
Take time to stroll through the 60-acre grounds. Here you can discover the fantastic exotic tree collection and Victorian walled garden, before heading on to the stable blocks for not one but three museums! Fans of railway heritage will find plenty to keep them occupied at the Industrial Railway Museum. A star attraction is the 1848 Fire Queen locomotive from Dinorwic Quarry Railway, built by marine engineers. A model railway museum continues the train theme on a smaller scale. You can also visit the Dolls’ Museum or take in one of the finest art collections in Wales, featuring such greats as Rembrandt and Canaletto, among many others.
Taith y Lechen (Slate Trail)
The Slate Trail from Nant Ffrancon to Port Penrhyn, Bangor along the Lôn Las Ogwen path tells the story of Ogwen slate from Penrhyn Quarry, the development of the railroads and the people involved in the slate industry. Interpretation panels and QR codes have been placed along the route. The interesting information provided for these are seen as pdf documents below.
Please visit National Trust website for latest opening times and prices
Signposted from Junction 11 of A55 and A5
Bangor Station - 2 miles
Bus stop at castle driveway
NCN Route 5
Grid Full Reference Number: SH 602719
OS Landranger map sheet: 115
- 01248 353084
- Penrhyn Castle, Bangor, LL57 4HN