"RHIW, (with Pen Llecii) a parish in the hundred of Commitmaen, county Carnarvon, 9 miles S.W. of Pwllheli, its post town. It is situated on Hells Mouth Bay, under Mynydd-Rhiw Mountain, which attains an elevation of more than 1,000 feet above sea level. The parish is of small extent and wholly agricultural. The substratum contains traces of manganese, which was once worked. The living is a rectory* in the diocese of Bangor, value with Llandudwen curacy annexed, £100, in the patronage of the bishop. The church, dedicated to St. Aelrhiw, is a cruciform structure with a tower. The principal residence is Plas Rhiw." [From The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868) - Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]



  • Cheney, Pat. Keatings of Plas-yn-rhiw. Country Quest 28/2 (1987), p. 8-9
  • Griffith, Margaret. Manganese mining at Rhiw in Llyn between 1827 and 1945. Transactions of the Caernarvonshire Historical 50 (1989), p. 41-70
  • Jones, Reg C. The Keatings of Plas-yn-rhiw. Country Quest 31/5 (1990), p. 8-9
  • Keating, M Honora. Plas-yn-Rhiw. 1957


St Aelrhiw, Rhiw

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.

Rhiw Parish; Statistics; Area 1653 acres; Population 160 males, 216 females, total 376

  • Aelrhiw Parish Church            Attendance - morning 15       Services in Welsh                "Sometimes double or treble the number attend Divine Service, but generally speaking the people of this parish are Dissenters most inimically opposed towards the Church"                Griffith Roberts, Rector
  • Pisca, Wesleyan Methodists              Erected 1837                      Attendance - morning 41 scholars, afternoon 55, evening 71    William Jones, Leader, Groeslan
  • Nebo, Independent               Erected 1813                    Attendance - morning 80, afternoon 67, evening 90                      Abram Jones, Elder Diacon

          Chapels and Churches and more -  on the Rhiw.com site

          Rev. John Jones (1773-1827) Papers  - details of extant records on Archives Network Wales
          "A written invitation calling for John Jones to serve Nebo Congregational Chapel, in Rhiw, Aberdaron, 1820 July 27, .... Also, a memorandum that John Williams of Llanfaelrhys, Caernarfonshire advanced a sum of £50 to a John Jones for the purpose of building a chapel in the parish of Rhiw in 1812.

          • Rees, Thomas & John Thomas. Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru (History of the Welsh Independent Churches), 4 volumes (published 1871+). Here is the entry from this book for Nebo    chapel (in Welsh )  - with translation by Eleri Rowlands (June 2012)

          Various items - on the People's Collection Wales site


          Church Records


          Description & Travel

          Rhiw com site - photographs, ships,  history etc

          A Penllyn site - Rhiw Community page

          Mynydd Rhiw - on the Modern Antiquarian site

          Various landscapes - on the People's Collection Wales site

          You can see pictures of Rhiw which are provided by:



          RHIW, a parish in the hundred of COMMITMAEN, Lleyn division of the county of CARNARVON, NORTH WALES, 11 miles (W. S. W.) from Pwllheli, containing 358 inhabitants. This place derives its name, signifying the ascent of a hill, from its situation on the acclivity of Mynydd Rhiw, a lofty eminence which rises above the village to an elevation of one thousand and thirteen feet above the level of the sea. The parish, which extends across the isthmus of Lleyn, is situated on the western shore of the bay called Porthnigel, in the great bay of Cardigan, and comprises a considerable portion of arable and pasture land, of which about two-thirds are ancient enclosure, and the remainder, which is mountainous, was enclosed by an act for that purpose, in the year 1811. The soil, in the lower grounds, is a stiff clay, and in the higher lands gravelly, producing fine crops of barley and oats, and excellent grass ; and the enclosed commons afford good pasturage for sheep and young cattle. The surrounding scenery is pleasingly diversified, and is somewhat enlivened by several small rivulets, which run through the parish. From the summit of Mynydd Rhiw the prospect is strikingly beautiful, embracing the whole range of the mountains of Snowdon, and extending over Cardigan bay, St. George's channel, and a great part of South Wales. Plas Rhiw, for many generations the seat of the family of Lewis, and now the property and residence of Lewis Moor Bennet, Esq., is an ancient and handsome mansion, pleasantly situated, and comprehending within the grounds some pleasing and picturesque scenery. Manganese, of very superior quality, abounds in the parish : the vein in which it lies was first discovered in 1827, and has been worked since that time with very great success : about fifty persons are now employed in procuring it, the produce being principally sent to the Liverpool market. The living is a rectory, with the perpetual curacy of Llandudwen annexed, in the archdeaconry and diocese of Bangor, rated in the king's books at £6.14. 9 1/2., endowed with £ 200 royal bounty, and in the patronage of the Bishop of Bangor. The church, dedicated to St. Aelrhiw, is an ancient and spacious cruciform structure, in the early style of English architecture, and is in good repair. There is a place of worship for Independents, with a burial-ground attached. A school for the gratuitous instruction of poor children is held every fourth year in this parish, in rotation with that of Bryncroes, in which the tenement is situated which forms the endowment, and those of Aberdaron and Llanvaelrhys. Some land in the parish, now, producing £4 per annum, was bequeathed for keeping the church in repair. The average annual expenditure for the support of the poor is £ 111. 41 (A Topographical Dictionary of Wales by Samuel Lewis, 1833)


          People of Rhiw - on the Rhiw.com site


          Historical Geography

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



          Rhiw history snippets - on the Rhiw.com site



          Gwynedd Family History Society have a diagram of the ecclesiastical parishes of Caernarfonshire (under Parishes)

           Parish of Rhiw in Carnarvonshire - on the People's Collection Wales site

          You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SH230285 (Lat/Lon: 52.824781, -4.627948), Rhiw which are provided by:



          Benallt Mine (Tyddyn Meirion mine: Ty Canol mine), Rhiw - on the Mindat.org site
          "The mines were first opened in 1886 and continued to produce manganese ore until 1894........."


          Public Records

          William Owen Roberts, Plas Llangwnadl Manuscripts 1793-1966   -  details of extant records on Archives Network Wales
          "The collection consists of transcripts of the parish registers of ............. Rhiw, 1845-1921.... "



          Rhiw School - on the Rhiw.com site