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"CORWEN, a parish and market town partly in the hundred of Edernion, in the county of Merioneth, and partly in the hundred of Isaled, in the county of Denbigh, North Wales, 10 miles N.E. of Bala, and the same distance from Llangollen. It is situated under Berwyn Mountain, on the river Dee, and includes the seaport of Barmouth, and the extra-parochial liberty of Gwern-Howell, besides 12 townships The town of Corwen, which is said to signify "white choir," is a pretty little place, containing less than 1,000 inhabitants, situated on an eminence on the S. bank of the river Dee. It is the seat of a Poor-law Union, and of County Court and registration districts." [From The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868) - Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]


Burrow, J (ed). The Borough Guide to Corwen: written by Horatio E Walker. Cheltenham, 1913

Clwyd, Hafina. Pobl sy'n Cyfri. Gwasg Carreg Gwalch, Llanrwst, 2001. 358 pages. Corwen pages 61-78 refer. (This book is a must for those with families living anywhere in Edeyrnion between 1881 and 1891.  There is a chapter for each parish in Edeyrnion plus a few more nearer to Ruthin - records many old families from the area between 1881 and 1891)

Cofio Corwen : remember the old days 1900-1994 [casglwyd gan] Glyn Owen. Llanrwst : Carreg Gwalch, 2000. 100p

Corwen and District Official Guide. Published under the auspices of Edeyrnion Rural District Council ; a United Services Handbook Production. 1954. 56 p

Corwen Town Trail: Published by Clwyd County Planning Department 1974.  29 pages.   Republished by Denbighshire County Council 1997 with minor changes to text and illustrations

Discover Corwen's Countryside:  Published in 2004 by the Countryside Service of Denbighshire County Council. 10 pages

Dutton, R J A. Walk a roman road : Vale of Corwen. Caergwrle : R.J.A.Dutton, 1996. 14p

Exploring Corwen: Published in 2005 by Denbighshire County Council Tourism Department.  A conveniently folded A2 sheet

From Rhyl to Corwen by rail.   Railway Magazine.  Feb/March 1957, pages 75-80, 193-196, 198

Gardener, Willoughby. The Mound at Rug near Corwen. Journal of the Merionethshire Historical Society 1961 pages 3-6

Official guide to Corwen & the Vale of Edeyrnion. Published by the Edeyrnion Rural District Council. Printed by A J Chapple (Bala Press) Bala 1962. 56 pages

Ray, Robert & Margaret. A welcome in the Welsh hillside: Corwen, a profile of village life. Amateur Photographer 155/5, pages 52-57

Roberts, Gomer. Atgofion Amaethwr. 1929. sub title/paragraph "Marchnad Corwen" pages 22-28, sub title/paragraph "Ffeiriau Corwen" pages 28-31 published in the Journal of the Merionethshire Historical and Record Society 1952 (Extra Publication Series 1 Number 2) Total Number of pages 1-75  published in the Welsh Language. (This publication contains a wealth of names, place and farm names, traditions and the beginning of local agricultural societies.)

Roberts, Henry. Illustrated guide to Corwen and neighbourhood : where to go, what to see, how to see it. Corwen : Corwen Print. Co., 1902. 39p

Webb, Valmai. The story of Corwen Church and churchyard. Clwyd Historian = Hanes Bro Clwyd 19 (1987), p. 14-24

Williams, Dennis W. Corwen and the Vale of Edeyrnion : a brief history of Edeyrnion and a guide to walks in the area.Corwen : The Printed Paper Company, 1992. 60p

Williams, Dennis W. Rails to Corwen a story of the building of the railway in the Vale of Edeyrnion. Corwen : Dennis W.Williams, 2001. 168p


Church History

Church and chapel data from The Religious census of 1851 : A Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 11, North Wales. Ed. by Ieuan Gwynedd Jones, UWP,   1981. The names given towards the end of each entry are those of the informants.

Parish statistics; Area 12646 acres; Population 1029 males, 1040 females, total 2069

  • Corwen Parish Church         Attendance - morning 120 +89 scholars, afternoon 25 + 89 scholars         Services in Welsh           "Afternoon service in English every Sunday at Rug Chapel a mile from Corwen - a private chapel but open to the public"            Morgan Hughes, Vicar
  • Bethesda Independent Chapel, Independents       Erected 1841      Attendance - morning 42 scholars, afternoon 58, evening 74          Humphrey Ellis, Minister
  • Chapel, Wesleyan Methodist       Erected 1836   "Before 1836 the Religious Worship and Sunday School were kept in other places from about the year 1800"       Attendance - morning 55, afternoon 98 scholars, evening 186         John Evans, Class Leader, Joiner and Builder
  • Zion Chapel, Calvinistic Methodist                    Erected 1802         Attendance - morning 8 + 100 scholars, afternoon school, evening 61 + 117 scholars                Evan Evans, Deacon, Ty'n y Cefn
  • Peniel, Calvinistic Methodist          Erected 1831          Attendance - morning 88, afternoon 125, evening 131                  Edward Evans, Deacon
  • Glyndyfrdwy Chapel, Baptist          Erected 1841          Attendance - morning 79, afternoon 105 scholars, evening 81                 "A Baptist chapel was erected at Glyndyfrwdy in the year 1824. But being too small for the congregation was sold for a British Schoolroom when this present chapel was erected in 1841"               William Hughes, Deacon, Smith
  • Rehoboam Chapel, Calvinistic Methodist     Erected  1838            Attendance - morning 30 scholars, afternoon school, evening 28 scholars                    Evan Evans, Deacon, Grocer, Corwen
  • Bryn Chapel, Glyndyfrdwy, Wesleyan Methodist       Erected 1824       Attendance - morning 33, afternoon 33 scholars, evening 37                Thomas Phillips, Leader and Trustee, Garth y dwr
  • Herber Chapel, Glynn Traian, Calvinistic Methodists                 Erected c1831             Attendance - afternoon 12 + 4 scholars             Thomas Edwards, Deacon, Tanymynydd Glyn Traian
  • Bettws G G Wesleyan Chapel, Wesleyan Methodist   [why not under Bettws GG parish ??]              Erected 1810           Attendance - morning 28, afternoon 30 scholars, evening 33         William Hughes, Steward, Tyn y Gro
  • Ucheldref, Calvinistic Methodists        Not a separate building     [Part of a Farm House....]        Attendance - morning school, afternoon 7 + 33 scholars, evening 3 + 17 scholars     Evan Evans, Deacon, Tyn y Cefn

People's Collection Wales - Rug Chapel, near Corwen

Rees, Thomas & John Thomas Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru   (History of the Welsh Independent Churches), 4 volumes (published 1871+). The Corwen section (in Welsh) has been extracted  - with translation by Maureen Saycell (Jan 2011)      Also Glyndyfrdwy chapel    - with translation by Maureen Saycell (March 2011)      Also Tre'rddfol chapel   - with translation by Maureen Saycell (March 2011)

Description and Travel

You can see pictures of Corwen which are provided by:

Corwen - on Wikipedia



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

  • John Rees Archive    "Papers, 1923-1925, mainly relating to the estate of John Rees of Ty'n y Parc, Corwen "
  • The Rhagad Collection 1626-1953   "The Rhagad estate, Corwen, was sold by John Maurice Jones to Judge John Lloyd (1746-1806) in 1804 for £10,000"      

Historical Geography

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


Llangollen and Corwen Railway site

Owain Glyndwr National Monument Papers - details of extant records on Archives Network Wales
"Papers relating to a proposed National Monument to Owain Glyndwr at Corwen 1894-1894 ......."

Land and Property

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

  • Llantysilio Hall manuscripts     "Henry Robertson (1816-1888), a Scotsman  ........... In 1869 he acquired the Pale mansion and estate near Corwen......."
    "Include ; ......... Deeds, accounts, papers and maps relating to the Llantysilio, Pale and Brymbo estates in Denbighshire and Merionethshire, 1840-1944......."
  • Hughes & Co. (Solicitors), Corwen, Papers   " ..including deeds and related records of lands in Corwen 1761-1875.."


Gwynedd Family History Society  havea diagram of the ecclesiastical parishes of Merionethshire (under Parishes)  - with some links to photographs of parish churches

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SJ078434 (Lat/Lon: 52.979969, -3.374702), Corwen which are provided by:

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

Corwen Workhouse - on Peter Higginbotham's site

Corwen Poor Law Union, rate book 1926   - details of extant records on Archives Network Wales

Public Records

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

  • Corwen Parish Council and Community Council records 1848-1996 
  • Corwen District Nursing Association Records and Correspondence  1935-1948
  • Nurse Wynne Evans Papers       "Papers donated by Nurse Wynn Evans, 1949-1960, including nursing records of the Corwen District, 1949-1958...."
  • Records of Guthrie Jones & Jones, Solicitors, Corwen, 1729-1967 - Including; local government records, 1777-1954, including Corwen Union, 1891-1934; ........ Corwen School Board records, 1878-1963; ....... records relating to public undertakings, including Corwen Water Company, 1893-1908; Corwen Gas Company, 1873-1923;  ....... business records, 1852-1939, mostly of the Corwen Slate Company, 1890-1936; ..................."