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Abercamlais is the westerly of the two ‘mansion’ houses set in parkland to the north of the A40 between Sennybridge and Brecon, just within the northern boundary of the Brecon Beacons National Park. It is a splendid Grade 1 listed building, originally dating from the middle ages, but altered extensively early in the early 18th Century with additions in Victorian times. It is set in extensive grounds, sheltered from the prevailing winds by mature beech and oak trees.
Nearby there is a dovecote serving as a bridge over the Camlais stream which flows into the river Usk. At the other side of the main river there is an 18th Century walled garden and there are walks through woodlands and along the river banks. Thomas Williams, Vicar of Llanspyddid, inherited the house in 1570 and his descendants (ten of whom were in Holy Orders) have lived here ever since.
An unbroken line in the Upper Usk Valley
‘The ancient and influential family of Abercamlais, of which that of Williams of Penpont…is a branch, is able to trace its pedigree without interruption to the eleventh century. William Rufus, when by sanction of that king, the Norman knight, Bernard de Neuf Marche, or Newmarch, made the conquest of the country now called Breconshire, but at that time Brycheiniog.’
Annals and Antiquities of the Counties and County Families of Wales, Thomas Nicholas, 1872.
There are two very old vines of dessert grapes (one white and one red) in the vinehouse. In days gone by dinner guests were invited to pick their own grapes to enjoy after their meal.read more
On Sunday 16th July Abercamlais joined forces with neighbours Penpont to open their gardens for the first ever River Walkread more
Work has begun on the Walled Garden at Abercamlais. The area has not been used as a vegetable or flower garden for some time.read more
'Splendid Grade I mansion dating from 16th Century, altered extensively in early 18th Century with 19th Century additions, in extensive grounds beside the river Usk. Beautiful octagonal pigeon house, formerly a privy.' (2017)
Hudson's Historic Houses & Gardens is the most comprehensive guide to heritage properties in Great Britain and Ireland.
The Historic Houses Association (HHA) represents over 1,640 of the UK's privately and charitably owned historic houses, castles and gardens.