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"LLANVAIR-AR-Y-BRYN (LLAN-FAIR-AR-Y-BRYN), a parish, in the union of LLANDOVERY, higher division of the hundred of PERVERTH, county of CARMARTHEN, SOUTH WALES, 1/2 a mile (N.E.) from Llandovery, on the turnpike-road to Builth; comprising the townships of Rhandir Abbot, Rhandir Canol, Rhandir Isāv, and Rhandir Uchāv; and containing 1649 inhabitants. . . In the township of Rhandir Abbot are some extensive lead-mines, the property of Earl Cawdor . . . These mines, which are among the principal in South Wales, have at times employed from one to two hundred workmen; but the number is now materially diminished, owing to the long and laborious land-carriage to Llanelly . . . The church, dedicated to St. Mary, and situated in Llandingat, nearly a mile from its own parish, is an ancient edifice, consisting of one large aisle, with a tower . . . There are three places of worship for Independents, and one for Calvinistic Methodists. About 25 children are educated in a day school, which is partly supported by the Earl Cawdor . . . another day school, appertaining to Independents, contains 20 children, who are taught at the expense of their parents; and there are four Sunday schools, in which 220 males and females receive gratuitous instruction." [From A Topographical Dictionary of Wales (S. Lewis, 1844).]


William Williams, Pantycelyn -  on Wikipedia ;  and on People's Collection Wales

Church History

See Welsh Chapels and Churches for a photograph of Llanfair ar y Bryn St Mary's Church

See John Ball's site Welsh Churches and Chapels Collection for a photograph/data re St Mary's Church

LLANFAIRARYBRYN, St. David  1882-1883  - on the Church plans online site

LLANFAIRARYBRYN, St. Mary   1862-1864   - on the Church plans online site

Carved stone figures from Llanfair-ar-y-bryn Church - on the People's Collection Wales site

Some church and chapel data from The Religious census of 1851 : A Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 1, South Wales. Ed. by I.G Jones, & D. Williams. UWP, Cardiff, 1976. The names are those of the informants


Davies, Rhys. Cefnarthen y comin, y capel a'r ysgol. Abertawe, Walters a'i fab, 1983

Griffiths, G. Milwyn. A Visitation of the Archdeaconry of Carmarthen, 1710   National Library of Wales journal. 1974, Summer Vol XVIII/3. Includes the parish of Llan Fair y Bryn

Parish entry from The Welsh Church Year Book, 1929 (Cd by (Archive CD Books)).

Parish entry  for Ystradffin  from The Welsh Church Year Book, 1929 (Cd by (Archive CD Books)).

Ystrad-Ffin - the ancient chapel, Capel Peulin, had no separate registers until the modern parish was created in 1875.

Church Records

Dyfed FHS have photographs and data relating to various churches and chapels on their site

Diocesan records suggest that c1790 the earliest PR here went back to 1600 'but not entire'

Parish registers: Christenings (1735-90, 1796-1865), Marriages (1736-46, 1756-1837), Banns (1823-1905) and Burials (1735-90, 1796-1844) are at the National Library of Wales with Mf copies at Carm.RO

Bishops' Transcripts, covering the period (1675, 1677-9, 1681-3, 1685-8, 1690-1, 1693-8, 1701-2, 1708, 1711, 1713, 1716-18, 1721-2, 1725, 1727-36, 1738-83, 1785-94, 1796-1800, 1802-60, 1865) are at the National Library of Wales, and have been microfilmed by the LDS.

Marriage index for this parish - see Dyfed Marriages, 1813-1837, Vol. 21 - Perfedd Hundred (Dyfed Family History Society, c1989)

See Bap/Mar/Bur data on FreeReg for;

Nonconformist Chapels:

Ystrad-Ffin .
The ancient chapel, Capel Peulin, in the parish of Llanfair-ar-y-bryn, seems to have had no PR until it became a separate parish [ formed out of Llanfair-ar-y-bryn and Cil-y-cwm in 1875]. The new church of St Barnabas was substituted for it in 1878.
Registers; Christenings, Marriages, Burials (1875-) with incumbent.
BTs: 1875-80 at NLW

Description and Travel

The Religious census of 1851 : A Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 1, South Wales., byJones, I.G. & Williams, D.   UWP,   Cardiff, 1976.  These statistics for this parish are extracted from this book which in turn got them from the 1851 census itself;

Places, villages, farms etc within Llanfair-ar-y-Bryn parish  as shown on the online parish map from 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 Merv Thomas)


Gittins, R & Spencer Davies, D. The Illustrated Heart of Wales Line. Llandysul, 1985, 143 pp. Its 110 mile route from Swansea to Shrewsbury takes it through  the heartland of Wales inc. the towns and hamlets of Pantyfynnon, Ffairfach, Llandeilo, Llangadog, Llandovery, Cynghordy etc, and describes each halt and station in detail.


Carmarthenshire Families


Davies, Ronald. Rhandir-Isaf: A Rhandir of the Parish of Llanfair-ar-y-Bryn. J. of the Dyfed FHS, vol. 1, (1982) pp.10-12.

Davies, Ronald. Epynt without people.1984, 208 p. Many families and holdings are named and the hamlets of Pentretygwyn, Babel and Halfway are covered in detail.

Davies, Rhys. Cefnarthen, Y Comin, Y Capel A'r Ysgol. (Cefnarthen, the Common, the Chapel and the School). Clydach, 1983.

Lloyd, Sir John E., (Ed.). A History of Carmarthenshire (2 vols.), Cardiff, London Carmarthenshire Society (1935, 1939). Extracts from this book can be accessed on some parish pages, see here for this parish

Land and Property

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;


View maps covering the area of this parish and places within its boundaries. NB,t here is no village of this name within the parish, and the parish church is within Llandingat parish, so the main link points to Cynghordy which is  fairly central  within Llanfair-ar-y-bryn parish.

Social Life and Customs

Williams, Pantycelyn. The National Library of Wales 'Treasures' series. A volume of religious poetry in the hand of William Williams (1717-1791), Wales' most eminent hymn writer.  "William was born in 1717 in Cefn-coed in the parish of Llanfair-ar-y-bryn, Carmarthenshire........."
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[Gareth Hicks :  15 Dec 2012]

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