"A parish in the Union of St. Asaph, hundred of Isdulas, four miles (SSW) from Abergele, containing 912 inhabitants. The village is pleasantly situated at the base of a lofty mountain, by which it is sheltered on one side, and has a fine opening towards the north, commanding a full view of the Irish Sea." [A Topographical Dictionary of Wales, 1833 & 1849, Samuel Lewis]

The ancient parish comprised the townships of Peniarth, Bodlyman, Maesegwig, Tre'rllan, Trofarth, and part of Cilcen.



  • Owens, Miriam.   Dathlu canmlwyddiant Capel Hyfrydle, Betws yn Rhos, 1898-1998      1998.
  • Wheway, J. Alan.     Betws-yn-Rhos  (1989 with additions during 2000-2008)    [Betws-yn-Rhos : John Wheway, 2009]

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.

Bettws-yn-Rhos Parish, Statistics; Area 6262 acres; Population 472 males, 423 females, total 895

  • No return for parish church.   New church erected in 1839 ( Lewis 1849)
  • Horeb, Wesleyan Methodists             Erected 1833             Attendance - morning 20 scholars, afternoon 60 + 20 scholars, evening 69 + 17 scholars    William Henry Waylett, Steward, Cefn Isas near Coed Coch, Abergele
  • Salem, Wesleyan Methodist         Erected 1825           Attendance - morning 55 scholars, afternoon 122, evening 142             Robert Hughes, Steward
  • Sion, Calvinistic Methodist               Erected 1819          Attendance - morning 83, afternoon 52 scholars, evening 88              John Roberts, Manager and Calvinistic Preacher, Shopkeeper
  • Tabernacle, Baptist         Erected 1831, attached to a house             Attendance - average - general congregation 100, scholars 35              Hugh Williams, Deacon, Carpenter

Ordnance Survey reference SH 907735.
The church, which is dedicated to St. Michael, was mentioned in the Norwich Taxation of 1254, as being part of the parish of Abergele, but it is distinct from Abergele in the Lincoln Taxation of 1254.
The old church was demolished in 1838; and the foundation stone of the present building was laid on 19 July 1838.

The Clwyd FHS website has a photograph of the church.

Nonconformist Churches

"Welsh Church Commission - County of Denbigh - The Statistics of the Nonconformist Churches for 1905" lists the following nonconformist places of worship in the Civil parish of Betws-yn-Rhos :

Name of Chapel Denomination Number of "adherents"
Coda Baptists 88
Hyfrydle Calvinistic Methodists 156
Sion Congregationalists 41
Not named Wesleyans 97
Salem, Rhydyfoel Wesleyans 215

Church Records

Parish Registers

  • The following Parish Registers have been deposited at the Denbighshire Record Office, Ruthin.
    They may be viewed on microfilm at the Denbighshire and Flintshire Record Offices, and at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth.
    These microfilms are not available elsewhere.
Baptisms Marriages Burials
1705 - 1992 1705 - 1989 1705 - 1992
  • Clwyd FHS has published full transcriptions of the Registers / Bishop's Transcripts (complete with indexes) for the following years :
Baptisms Marriages Burials
1663 - 1812 1663 - 1812 1663 - 1812

Bishop's Transcripts

  • Bishop's Transcripts for the years shown below have been deposited in the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth.
    Around the year 1951, most of the Bishop's Transcripts which had been deposited at that time were microfilmed by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; and the films are available on request at Family History Centres of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
    The films may also be viewed at the Denbighshire and Flintshire Record Offices, and at the National Library of Wales.
    In general, the Bishop's Transcripts are less complete than the parish registers.
Deposited at the National Library of Wales Microfilmed copies
1663 - 1833 1663 - 1833


  • There are no official I.G.I. entries for St. Michael's, Betws-yn-Rhos.

Civil Registration

When Civil Registration was introduced (on 1 July 1837), the parish of Betws-yn-Rhos was assigned to the No. 2 ("Abergele") sub-district of the St. Asaph Registration District, which was co-extensive with the St. Asaph poor law Union.

In the GRO indexes to civil registration, entries for Betws-yn-Rhos are in the format :

  • Years 1837 - 1851: St. Asaph XXVII. nnn
  • Years 1851 - 1930: St. Asaph 11b. nnn

(GRO index references have no relevance at the local Superintendent Registrar's Office)


Description & Travel

Betws yn Rhos - on wikipedia

Betws yn rhos about 1938 on the People's Collection Wales site

You can see pictures of Betws-yn-Rhos which are provided by:



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


Historical Geography

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



"North-East Wales Churches and Ancient Parish Boundaries" produced by Clwyd Record Office in 1994, published by Genuki with the permission of Flintshire Record Office and Denbighshire Archives

Kain, R.J.P., Oliver, R.R., Historic Parishes of England and Wales: an Electronic Map of Boundaries before 1850 with a Gazetteer and Metadata [computer file]. Colchester, Essex: History Data Service, UK Data Archive [distributor], 17 May 2001. SN: 4348.   Here is a gazetteer/finding aid plus a set of overview maps to accurately identify the position of parishes within the county.

Map of the parish of Bettws yn Rhos in the County of Denbigh   -  on the People's Collection Wales site

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SH881724 (Lat/Lon: 53.237205, -3.678617), Betws-yn-Rhos which are provided by:



Cobbler, Betws-yn-Rhos on the People's Collection Wales site



  • In 1831- the population was 912.
  • In 1901- the population was 459.
    [ Royal Commission on the Welsh Church - October 1907]


Pupils, Betws-yn-Rhos school (1899) on the People's Collection Wales site