Conwy, formerly known in
English as Conway, is a
town and community in Conwy County Borough on the north coast
of Wales; it faces
Deganwy across the River Conwy. The town formerly lay in Gwynedd and prior to
that in Caernarfonshire.
is a market town; one of the most popular tourist destinations on
the north Wales coast; and has a population of 14,208.
Conwy Castle and the town walls were built on the instructions
of Edward I between 1283 and
1289, as part of his conquest of the principality of Wales.
the original site of Aberconwy Abbey, founded by Llywelyn
Edward and his troops took over the abbey
site and moved the monks down the Conwy valley to a new site at
Maenan. The parish church
retains some parts of the original abbey church in the east and
west walls. English settlers were given incentives to move to the
walled garrison town, which for decades the Welsh were forbidden
Plas Mawr is a historic house which has been extensively
refurbished to its original 16th century appearance and is now in
the care of Cadw.
estuary is Bodysgallen
Hall, which incorporates a medieval watchtower that was
later used as a signal place for Conwy Castle.
Conwy has other tourist attractions that help draw visitors to the
town. Thomas Telford
built the Conwy
Suspension Bridge, which spans the River Conwy next to the castle.
It was completed in 1826
and replaced the ferry at the same point. Telford matched the
bridge's supporting towers with the castle's turrets. The bridge,
which is now open to pedestrians only, together with the
toll-keeper's house, is in the care of the
Robert Stephenson built the Conwy Railway
Bridge, a tubular bridge for
the Chester and Holyhead Railway in 1849. This is still in
main-line use with a station on the North
Wales Coast Line within the town walls.
The crossing of
the River Conwy has always been a problem and today, in addition to
a modern bridge serving the town, the A55
goes under the river by tunnel, built between 1986 and
old mountain road to Penmaenmawr runs through the Sychnant Pass, at the foot of Conwy Mountain.
Conwy Town Walls
The National Trust owns Aberconwy House, which is Conwy's only
surviving 14th century merchant's house. Another fine house open to
the public is Plas Mawr (great mansion) built in 1576 by the Wynn
family and now in the care of Cadw
House in Great Britain can be found on the quay.
It is in the
Guinness Book of Records
with dimensions of 3.05 metres x 1.8 metres. It was lived in since
the 1500s (it was even inhabited by a family at one point) and
lived in until 1900 when the owner a (6ft fisherman – Robert Jones)
was forced to move out on the grounds of hygiene. The rooms were
too small for him to stand up in fully. The house is still owned by
his descendants today.
Conwy Morfa, a marshy spit of land on the west side of the
estuary, and was probably the location where golf was first played
on Welsh soil. It was also where Hugh Iorys Hughes developed and later
built the famous floating Mulberry Harbour, used in Operation
Overlord in World War II.
Britain's smallest house.
A map of Conwy from 1947
- Office for National Statistics : Census 2001 :
Parish Headcounts : Conwy
- Plas Mawr website