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Llanerchaeron's collections

The corner of Llanerchaeron villa, a cream rendered building with a slate roof. In the foreground is a meadow of tall grass with mature trees behind the house and dark grey skies above.
View of South & West fronts of the villa at Llanerchaeron | © National Trust Images/Andrew Butler

At Llanerchaeron there are some fascinating collections, given by two determined collectors, for everyone to enjoy. Explore a variety of curious items from Pamela Ward’s antique shop in the villa, or Geler Jones’s once private collection of agricultural, industrial and domestic treasures from times gone by.

The Pamela Ward Collection at Llanerchaeron

Eclectic and diverse, it’s a vast miscellany of intriguing and often unusual items that were owned by a woman who was just as interesting as her collection. Two former bedrooms in the villa at Llanerchaeron house this unique assortment of antiques and curiosities, known as the Pamela Ward Collection.

Travels through Europe

Pamela Muriel Ward was born in 1908, the daughter of a concert violinist and a colonel in the army. Much of her young life was spent in India where her father was stationed. As a teenager she travelled extensively throughout Europe, often unchaperoned.

Independently wealthy, she never married and seemed to revel in being free to do whatever took her fancy.

Pamela’s antique shop

In the 1960s, Pamela decided to open an antiques shop in Knightsbridge which sold ‘little things she liked’. Her habit for collecting had begun from acquiring souvenirs on her early travels and she tended to treat the running of the shop as a hobby.

Pamela’s Legacy

In the 1990s, long after her shop had closed its doors but living in a house filled with treasures, Pamela decided she wanted to leave her collection to the National Trust, to be placed in a Georgian house.

A new roof for Llanerchaeron

After her death, her trustees chose Llanerchaeron as the right setting to receive her collection and with it came the money from the sale of her London house. This re-roofed Llanerchaeron at a time when funding for the restoration work was greatly needed.

With over 5,000 items in the collection, we regularly rotate what’s on display so there’ll be something new to see each time you visit.

A steamroller with the words 'Geler Jones, Saddler, Cardigan' painted along it in a barn.
Steam roller from the Geler Jones collection at Llanerchaeron | © National Trust Images / Michael Hall

The Geler Jones collection at Llanerchaeron

The Geler Jones collection is a treasure trove of early 20th-century agricultural and domestic machinery and implements as well as horse drawn carts and carriages, and a magnificent steam engine named ‘Glenys’.

Who was Geler Jones?

In the 1960s, Geler Jones, a local saddler purchased a large garden at the back of his house in Cardigan in which to keep a steam engine. This steam engine was the first piece in what would become a large and sprawling collection of agricultural, industrial and domestic objects which were once commonplace in rural mid Wales. His wife Mair was also a keen collector and responsible for collecting a large number of the domestic items you’ll see in the collection.

Sharing a private collection

In 1972, Geler decided to open his private collection to the public, which had by this time acquired a horse drawn carriage with delicate silk interiors, a huge threshing machine, early shearing machinery and a number of early 20th-century tractors.

A purpose-made home for a collection

Bought for the National Trust in 1993 by the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the collection, most of which was manufactured or used in the local Cardigan area, is now housed in a purpose-made building at the bottom end of the estate, just off the farmyard. It’s open to view on Wednesdays and Fridays.

A steamroller with the words 'Geler Jones, Saddler, Cardigan' painted along it in a barn.

Llanerchaeron's collections

Explore the objects and works of art we care for at Llanerchaeron on the National Trust Collections website.

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