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Help and advice for Brecon

If you have found a problem on this page then please report it on the following form. We will then do our best to fix it. If you are wanting advice then the best place to ask is on the area's specific email lists. All the information that we have is in the web pages, so please do not ask us to supply something that is not there. We are not able to offer a research service.

If you wish to report a problem, or contribute information, then do use the following form to tell us about it. We have a number of people each maintaining different sections of the web site, so it is important to submit information via a link on the relevant page otherwise it is likely to go to the wrong person and may not be acted upon.


"BRECON, (or Brecknock) comprising the two parishes of St. John the Evangelist and St. David, a market town, municipal and parliamentary borough, in the hundreds of Merthyr-Cynog, Penkelly, and Devynnock, in the county of Brecknock, South Wales, 171 miles to the W. of London. It is situated on the banks of the Usk, at the confluence of the Honddhu and Tarell with that river, and is the county town of Brecknockshire. It is a place of great antiquity, and is called by the Welsh, from its situation at the mouth of the Honddhu, Aberhonddhu. ..."[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868) Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]



Transcripts of 1871, 1881, 1891, 1901, and 1911 censuses for Christ College School, Brecon - on John Ball's Welsh Family History Archive website.


Church History

The Diocese of Swansea and Brecon site

See the separate pages for these churches;

Various items - on the People's Collection Wales  site

  • Brecon Cathedral 
  • Plough Chapel, Brecon
  • Watergate Chapel, Brecon
  • Priory Church, Brecon
  • The almost deserted Watton in Brecon, probably photographed in the 1880s. The Gothic style Presbyterian church on the right was completed in 1872. Beyond the Watton lies the Bulwark, with the Shire Hall and the lofty tower of St Mary's Church in the distance.
  • Christ College chapel, Brecon, 1813

Church Records

See the separate pages for these churches;


Court Records

Petty Sessions were first held in the nineteenth century, a minor court presided over by two or more justices or magistrates. Records include minute books, court registers, adoption registers, licensing and ledger accounts. There is a 75 year closure period for adoption records and 30 years for the rest. Petty Sessions Records from 1903-1994 (reference: BPS/BR) have been deposited at Powys Archives


Description and Travel

Family Search have an interactive map called "England and Wales Jurisdictions 1851" showing parish (and other) boundaries with optional background maps such as Ordnance Survey. There is also a Search facility, do read the guidance notes to get maximum benefit from this useful resource. See here for further background information to assist in the interpretation of this data

Places, villages, farms etc. within/adjacent to the town of 'Brecon' as shown on the parish map on the CD of Historic Parishes of England and Wales: an Electronic Map of Boundaries before 1850 with a Gazetteer and Metadata [computer file]. (Kain, R.J.P., Oliver, R.R.) (Extracted by John Ball). NB - both these sections are described as Extra-parochial in the source gazetteer.

  • Castle Inn [49] - No names included
  • Christ College [50] - College

Brecon Beacons National Park Online Guide

Wales Calling site - Brecon Beacons

Brecon Castle on the Castle Wales site

Monmouthshire Brecon and Abergavenny Canal Trust

Various landscapes - on the People's Collection Wales  site

A view along the River Honddu from Castle Bridge in Brecon, towards its meeting point with the River Usk. Brecknock Castle remains are shown high above the river on the right and the peak of Pen y Fan is in the distance. The print was engraved from a drawing by Henry Gastineau. 1829 -  on the People's Collection Wales  site

You can see pictures of Brecon which are provided by:



The transcription of the section for Brecon from the National Gazetteer (1868) provided by Colin Hinson.

Ask for a calculation of the distance from Brecon to another place.

Click here for a list of nearby places.


Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Brecon has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.



Various items - on the People's Collection Wales  site

  • Brecon mail cart, 1885. The two wheel mail cart which carried the official mail between Brecon and Abergavenny, pictured outside the Blue Boar Inn in the Watton, Brecon. 
  • Engraved view of Brecon, 1823. A print of Brecon from a painting by Thomas Christopher Hofland, engraved by G. Hunt and published in London on 1 February, 1823, by T. Clay of 18 Ludgate Hill.
  • Hardware shop in Brecon, c. 1900
  • River Usk and the bridge at Brecon, 1895
  • Castle Hotel, Brecon, 1870s
  • A contemporary view of the Bulwark in Brecon, with the impressive bulk of the Shire Hall dominating the scene. The tall tower of St Mary's Church is at the centre. This print is from an extensive series of topographical engravings created and published by Newman & Co at 48 Watling Street, London. The former Shire Hall is now Brecknock Museum and Art Gallery.
  •  The Barracks, Brecon, 1900s
  • Brecon Castle & Priory Church, from Usk bridge
  • High Street Inferior, Brecon, c. 1900
  •  Escort for the Assize Court Judge at Brecon, 1930s
  • A 'carte de visite' photograph showing a 19th century Constable (collar number 24) of the Breconshire County Constabulary.Printed on the rear of the card - H.HOBBISS. PHOTOGRAPHER. 18 THE WATTON. BRECON

Military History

Various WWI items - on the People's Collection Wales  site



Various items  - on the People's Collection Wales  site

  • The Brecon Reporter Jan 7 1865 - Front page of the earliest surviving copy of the Welsh newspaper
  •  The Brecon County Times May 5 1866 - Front page of the earliest surviving copy of the Welsh newspaper The Brecon County Times
  • Glamorgan, Monmouth and Brecon Gazette and Merthyr Guardian Dec 1832- Front page of the earliest surviving copy of the Welsh newspaper Glamorgan, Monmouth and Brecon Gazette and Merthyr Guardian


Christ College, Brecon

Christ College, Brecon - Transcripts of 1871, 1881, 1891, 1901, and 1911 censuses on John Ball's Welsh Family History Archive website.

Various items - on the People's Collection Wales  site

  • Christ College and chapel, Brecon, c. 1865
  • Masters and pupils at Christ College, Brecon, c. 1895
  • Christ College Cricket XI 1912 /13 /14 
  • Christ College Hockey XI 1914
  • Christ College XV 1912-1913 Rugby

Social life and Customs

Various items  - on the People's Collection Wales  site

  • The Gorsedd of the Bards, Brecon, 1889.
  • Studio portrait of Alderman John Prothero, Mayor of Brecon- on the People's Collection Wales  site, 1866
  • Boating on Brecon canal, 1904
  • Eisteddfod Proclamation at Brecon, 1888
  • Brecon football club team, c. 1880
  • Flower show in Brecon, 1890s
  • Cinema treat for children, Brecon, 1912
  • The Names of the poor of Brecon, 1786. A list of all households in Brecon, with the names of the poor marked, street by street. The booklet seems to have been covered in eighteenth -century wallpaper.
  • Members of Brecon's womens' choir dressed in Welsh costume, 19th century