"NICHOLAS (ST.), a parish in the hundred of DINAS-POWIS, county of GLAMORGAN, SOUTH WALES, 6 miles (W. by S.) from Cardiff containing 351 inhabitants.
This parish, which takes its name from the dedication of its church, is situated on the turnpike road from Cardiff to Swansea, and comprises a considerable tract of arable and pasture land, of which the whole, with the exception of only a small portion, is enclosed and cultivated. The soil is in general fertile and productive ; and the surrounding scenery is pleasingly varied, and in some parts picturesque.
Dyfryn House, formerly the seat of the ancient family of Price, and now, by marriage with the heiress of that family, the property and residence of the Hon. William Booth Grey, is agreeably situated in a retired spot, about a mile southward from the village : the grounds are tastefully laid out, and comprehend a pleasing variety of scenery. Cottrel, late the property of Miss Gwynett, and now the residence of Admiral Sir Charles Tyler, K. C. B., to whose eldest son, Capt. Tyler, R. N., it will revert on the death of the Earl of Clarendon, is pleasantly situated, and commands from the rear of the house a fine view of part of the picturesque Vale of Ely, with Hensol castle and the grounds attached to it on the western bank of the river.
Fairs, chiefly for cattle and sheep, are annually held in the village on May 19th, August 21st, and December 17th ; and the petty sessions for the hundred are also held at this place.
The living is a discharged rectory, in the archdeaconry and diocese of Llandaf, rated in the king's books at £ 11. 10., and in the patronage of the Hon. William Booth Grey. The church is an ancient and venerable structure, with a tower at the west end. There are places of worship for Baptists and Welsh Calvinistic Methodists.
A school for the gratuitous instruction of poor children upon the National system is supported by Mrs. Grey and the rector of the parish.
On the right of the road leading from the village to Dyfryn House is an ancient cromlech, said to be the largest monument of the kind in the kingdom : it consists of large flat stones nearly six feet in height, enclosing an area of seventeen feet in length and thirteen in breadth, upon which rests a table stone, twenty-four feet long, and varying in breadth from seventeen to ten feet. In a field by the road side, immediately opposite to Cottrel Lodge gate, is a single stone of the same origin, lying in an inclined position.
The average annual expenditure for the support of the poor amounts to £ 190. 19."