blast from  the past gallery

June and Roger Lewis

Oakdale 1995

Fox Hunt Drovers Return Caerleon -from Roger Lewis


Roger's son jumps at

the Grand National

Alice Stevens -Doug's mother 1940 - from John Harper

In 2015 the Hamlet published   a book of Wartime Memories.  There were almost 50 contributors.  If you missed     out and  are interested in purchasing a copy please email me -Janet Myers.


Several residents have more stories to tell and some missed the last edition so a part two is a possibility.  If I receive enough contributions we will put another book together.


This is where I grew up, Hillside, Pencoed Lane Llanmartin. In the dip between just beyond the two fields in the large photo is where the M4 is now! You can just make out the telegraph poles between those two fields, that's the main road that goes from Langstone to Caldicot. We could see Twmbarlwm from the house in the distance, and used to love the sunsets.


 The view from there is still the same except that lovely old wood was desecrated, the then owner was fined and forced to replant. Trees have grown now but nothing could beat that ancient wood, that tall tree was my favourite to climb, a sycamore. The drive up to our house and past our gate just out of sight is a private one that leads to Pencoed Castle where I used to play and act out Enid Blyton adventures!


My parents had the house built and made that rockery by themselves, I was very young when we moved out here from Western Avenue. When the builders bulldozed into the hill to level the land for the foundations, they uncovered part of the original Pencoed Castle wall, so these stones were used to create that wonderful rockery that my Mum loved so much and worked so hard to achieve.


Yes it was lovely and is still there in the field on its own, but has been extended front and back and that lovely rockery is hidden under growth. I live in Devon, near Dartmoor but have been back to that field of my childhood memories quite often, the view is just the same apart from that monstrosity the Celtic Manor which can be seen in the distance. I last went in the house in 2007 when it was being modernised and the then owner kindly gave me my favourite tile from the old fireplace he was taking out. It's a painting of a Kingfisher and as a child I loved looking at it.


Elizabeth Weatherly

Pencoed Castle

Interesting reading.......comments over the years....


By Dennis Morgan: I am a direct descendant of Sir Thomas Morgan, Wondering if you can tell me what the current condition of the Castle is in ?

By morgan ferris: we live next to the castle in the old farm house, the castle is in a terrible state has metal screens over the doors and windows, and is home to thousands of birds and not much else, apparently there are plans to renovate and make apartments in the castle, and the old barns, but when this is likely to happen in the present climate is anybodies guess,


By Andrew Brown: Hey, I'm a descendant of Sir Thomas Morgan also, would like to come visit the castle someday soon, either this summer or next summer. Do you know who the current owners are? Morgan Ferris; please E mail me at andrewbrown1967@hotmail Thanks! Andrew


By Yvonne Powell: I used to play in the castle as a child in the 1960's. The castle was owned by the father of a school friend of mine called Sally Williams. The family lived in a bungalow to the side of the castle; Mr Williams farmed the land and the castle was used to house thousands of chickens. At the time, I believe one of the rooms above the keep was habitable and lived in by a farm hand. I clearly remember when going up to the top to look over the battlements, that this area always struck me as being very new and unused. Perhaps this was why I always believed the story that the castle had never been finished because it was built for the daughter of the Lord of the Manor, who, when she had married beneath her, was disowned by her family. The story was that this broke her father’s heart and he could never bring himself to complete the castle. Whether this was the case I don’t know, but to a twelve year old, this romantic story was very believable.


By Alison Driscoll: Hi Paul I live in one of the flats next to the castle and I am sure I have previously seen a black and white photo of the gatehouse in the winter. I thought it had some spooky trees, can you contact me to confirm what photos you have that I could buy? I am particaulrly interested in black and white. Thanks Alison Driscoll


By Michael Mason: My mother is Mrs.Gladys Morgan from Morgan in Clarendon, Jamaica. A decent from the slaves on Morgan's Sugar plantation Estate in Morgan, Clarendon in Jamaica. I will be coming to Wales to visit the Castle and Mr. Pennants Family's Castle near Bangor in Wales. A town is also named after him in Clarendon where my Dad purchase land in Calrendon. I will also be going back to the Morgans's estate in Jamaica to claim a piece of land which my family worked on. I know the owmers of the land. My Dad is Mr. Elijah Mason who married Mrs. Morgan Michael Mason


By pip van Renswoude-Davies: It has been a nice suprise to find so much about this wonderful bit of archetcture on the web. I first came accross the castle some twenty-five years ago while living and working in the area. I have since qualified as an Historian (admittedly in a different epoch to 1300 - 1700's) but would be very interested in looking around the castle if possible (hard hat included, of course!)and recording what is there before too much deteriorates.


By Jodi Christie: Hi I am a descendant Of Sir Thomas Morgan, and I have been doing a family history on my grandmothers side. After she died I took over. I was wondering is the castle still in the Morgan name, and if so do you have any other pictures that i can see that would help me with the ancestry. Thank you Jodi Christie


By Rae Nell Krusen: I hope to visit Pencoed castle someday. I was delighted when I discovered the pictures and it was what I had been looking for for years because of a recurring dream I've had. I was a young girl in a dark riding dress...walking up to the equestrian barns where I mounted a large black horse that I was riding side saddle. I remember going riding and jumping the hedges and riding the green fields behind the castle. When I rode back I turned and could see the house between the barns and the castle...but always woke up before I saw the castle. The only part of the castle I remember in one dream was standing on the battlement and looking out over the fields that I had ridden over. I am a descendant of the the Morgans of Wales...I am not sure if they are these Morgans or not. I would like it if you could contact me and give me more information about who I can contact so I can see this castle when I visit. I hope that will be in the next year. my email is


By peter waters: My late father, Richard Ponting Waters (cousin of Martin)used to play there and be dangled by his ankles from the battlements in the 1940s!

By Peter Morgan: We bought the property off Jim Williams in 2003. We are very keen to keep all the buildings within one ownership, rather than convert and sell off individual bits. There is no way we would consider spliting the castle into apartments it needs to be left as one. We are hoping to do a similar scheme to what we have done at Llancayo Court Usk, with the House being left as 3 rental units, the barns being converted to office's for rental and the Castle as one single holiday let, which would sleep 22, similar to what we have done with Llancayo Windmill. It is likely to be a few years before we start restoration, but in the meantime we do ensure that the roof and gutters are maintained. We need to keep the castle locked up for safty and security reasons as around 20 of the coping stones were stolen just before the purchase. We are quite happy to open up and shown people around if anyone wants a look, email and I'll arrange something in the Summer. To view our restoration of the Windmill type Llancayo & Windmill into Google.


By Rob Hardy: I used to go to the castle and collect the unwanted tiny chicken eggs from Mrs Handy



By bill page: My mother Gladys Pattie Williams lived in the farmhouse by it and Grandfather Williams farmed the land or was caretaker ofthe castle.If you know more detail please let me know

By bill page: e mail Grandfather Thomas Henry Williams was born c.1850 at Llanmartin and from Castle Farm moved to Eye Hereford then to Overton Shropshire

By bill page: eMail address correction to net and it was aunt Margaret Williams there as my mother was born later.Hoping to visit eventually.


By Patricia Morgan Bowles: I have loved looking at pictures of Pencoed for years and WILL touch its walls someday! Thank you to all who share their Castle stories.


By Sue Williams: No relation to any of the Williams' mentioned in the comments. We spent an interesting hour here this morning but after looking at your photos again realise we weren't brave enough to venture round the back or inside. Thank you for your website it's given us ideas for a few photographic trips.


By Miss Laura Gale: Hello Everyone I would love to take some pictures on Pencoed (inside and out) Does anyone know the current owner and how I can get in contact with them. I have tired knocking the door of the neighbouring house twice and no one answers. I would love to get permission to take the photos. Thank you


By Denise Llewellyn: My mother, Mary Poyner (nee Price) who is now 90 years old, was a nanny to Martin Hazel (Hazels Haulage) as a young woman. They lived near the sea wall at Goldcliff. Pencoed Castle was at that time owned by Mr. Hazel and they used to travel to the castle by Rolls Royce. My mother said that there were lots of chickens running around.


By derek edwards: Would love to photograph Pencoed castle as a project for my club. Gwent Digital Imaging society. Would like to know who to contact. Derek Edwards


By jason reynolds: hi i am conducting research and have been looking at your web site just would like to say how wonderful it is. if it would be possible to talk to you about the research i am doing and any advise you can give my no is 07816956980 many thank's jason....


By Ed Kaczmarczyk: Moved from Pencoed, Mid Glamorgan to my first teaching job in bristol in 1978. Worked for Stephen Weeks on Penhow as carpenter for little money but would have worked for nil just to be part of Penhow's beauty and heritage. Was highly amused to discover a Pencoed Castle so close to Penhow where I lived at first, commuting every day to teach in Bristol. Stephen did his best to get Pencoed castle but it was never to be. I honestly believe he could have made Pencoed great again.So the outpost Pencoed castle, is to become a glorified hostel. Oh how fate can twist the knife,--Ed Kaczmarczyk ----Ps, if you will allow nobodies like me to visit and photograph what exists prior to conversion, please contact me on on my Email. Yours respectfully, Ed K


By Kevin Symonds: Hi Peter Morgan first would like to say what a wonderful looking castle. Even now it still displays the richness of the architecture is stunning. I would like to ask you if I could contact you directly about a request if you would allow me. I look forward to hearing from you with kind respect Kevi


By Gray Noonr: I came across this wonderful building today while on a bike ride with my dog, I took a few photographs, but didnt want to get to close as I could see that the two buildings either side where inhabited so didnt want to disturb anyone my wife and I would love to have a look around if that would be at all possible

Roger aged two

David Price aged two.  The tractor ? still in use

This was taken in the church hall during the Christmas/ New Year some time in the late 40's. The only person I can identify in the photo is Don Hotchkis (chain saw doctor) he is up at the back lefthand side.  Tony Ford

Llangibby Foxhounds  1925  Chapel in background.  Arthur Michael only local.....

Tony says .....

This is a photo taken outside the gate of Oakdale cottage.  It was called Woodbine House but Don's family changed it to Oakdale cottage when they moved in as they thought people might think it was named after a cigarette.

Noticed the old church in the background it was knocked down to increase the width of the road. I found some of the gravestones from the churchyard had been used in the back garden of the cottage as a garden path including one with the name Henry Ball from Bishton dated. 1779.

Eggs on a shovel for breakfast. Fred Smith   2003

At the age of sixteen I started my second job as a steam engine driver shunting ammunition at Newport Docks.  Every day I would cycle four miles from Somerton to work and quite frequently I would walk.  On the morning shift we would cook our eggs and bacon on our shovel.  Then we would black the whole engine with grease and oil and a duster.  My driving partner Charles Weaver, lent me two shillings for my breakfast one morning and thats where I met Marion at the British Railway Canteen, Mill street.  She became my wife and we have been together ever since. 

The man on the bike is Don Hotchkiss, the newspaper photo is probably from the early 1950s and the group pic was taken outside the chapel celebrating 100 years since the chapel was opened.   Tony