Visiting the John Nash villa at Llanerchaeron
Set in the heart of the beautiful Aeron Valley, the John Nash villa makes the most of the views across the picturesque landscape. Step inside and you'll discover how its exterior simplicity hides a multitude of complex shapes and details as well as a rare example of a complete service courtyard hidden at the back of the house.
Things to see inside the villa at Llanerchaeron
The family mansion at Llanerchaeron was completed in 1795 to a design by John Nash, an ambitious but not yet fully established Architect. Llanerchaeron mansion is a Palladian style Georgian Villa - the style in which Nash was taught during seven years as a pupil with the Palladian specialist architect Robert Taylor who had designed the Carmarthen Guildhall in this style during this same period.
Making the most of the views
At first sight, the house is simplicity itself, a plain two-storey box of stucco and slate. However, John Nash placed it with great care to make the most of the views across the picturesque landscape. He arranged the principal rooms around a central, top lit staircase hall.
High quality interiors
The interiors show his mastery of complex shapes and subtle classical detail. Look out especially for the plasterwork friezes: no two are the same, and all are of the highest quality.
The servants’ area
The servants’ area to the rear of the house clearly shows the distinction between the everyday life of the family and their hard-working staff. The kitchen has an Edwardian range that is often lit for baking, so remember to look out for homemade welsh cakes.
The Pamela Ward collection
Two former bedrooms in the villa at Llanerchaeron house this unique assortment of antiques and curiosities, known as the Pamela Ward Collection. 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.
The latest exhibition Pwyth a Gweu // Stitch and Weave displays a mix of tapestries, woven textiles and embroidery which date from the 17th – 19th centuries.
Most of these items have not previously been on display to the public. Each item has been handpicked to reflect Pamela’s broad interests and include a variety of styles, historical periods and techniques.
One of the oldest pieces is an intriguing fragment of the tapestry 'Diogenes discarding his cup', which is from a series called 'The Life of Diogenes', will be on show. It is thought to have come from the Mortlake workshop in London in the late 17th century. Numerous sets and partial sets of the ‘Diogenes’ tapestries survive in National Trust collections, including at Chirk Castle and Dyrham Park.
The service courtyard at Llanerchaeron
This is one of the most fascinating and important areas of Llanerchaeron and it is almost unique having survived in its original form. Planned for maximum efficiency, it tells the unseen tale of the amount of work involved in running a country house.
In the service courtyard you'll find the dairy, dairy scullery, cheese press room and store, bakehouse, smoke-house, salting room, brew-house and the dry laundry room.
Keep an eye out for our resident cats who can often be spotted outside in the servants courtyard.
For over three centuries Llanerchaeron in Ceredigion was home to ten generations of the Lewis/Lewes family. Discover how each generation contributed to the estate as you see it today.
On your visit to Llanerchaeron why not treat yourself to one of Conti's Café’s famous ice creams, take home fresh produce grown in the garden and browse the second-hand bookshop.
The Walled Garden at Llanerchaeron in Ceredigion has been growing delicious food for over 200 years. When you visit you can buy fresh produce to take home with you.
You can enjoy a walk and see a variety of wildlife year-round at Llanerchaeron in the parkland, woods, meadows and of course the working farmyard.