We use cookies on this website. You can read about, and manage them, here. To use all the functionality of Stay in Wales, please accept cookies.

Plas Newydd

Museum and Gardens

The town of Llangollen has been famous since 1947 as the home of the International Eisteddfod. In the early part of the 19th century it was well known for another reason, as being the home of the Ladies of Llangollen, Lady Eleanor Butler and Miss Sarah Ponsonby. The romantic story of their elopement from their families in Ireland, their journey to Wales, and their setting-up home at Plas Newydd, a cottage above the town where they lived together for almost 50 years, captured the imagination of Regency England.

The house where the Ladies made their home was originally an unpretentious small cottage when they moved there in 1780. Between 1798 and 1814 they embarked on the elaborate 'gothicisation' of their home. The result is the projecting stained glass windows and the elaborately carved oak panels, many of which were donated by visiting friends. The process was continued by General Yorke, a subsequent owner.

The formal gardens in front of the house were created after the Ladies time, but they reflect the peace and tranquility that the runaways were seeking. The terraced gardens that replace the original grounds make a pleasant place to walk and bear traces of the features that were put there by the Ladies. For example, the font from the nearby Valle Crucis Abbey is still in place.