Revealing an Unsung Treasure
16 July 2012
North Wales Archaeological Building Investigation and Recording Project
A new Cardiff University project aiming to discover more of the history of one of Gwynedd’s unsung treasures at Plas Brynkir is about to begin.
The Plas Brynkir, North Wales: Archaeological Building Investigation and Recording survey may put the houses and tower on the map locally and nationally, discovering if it is part of the ‘Unit System’ of the post medieval period and of more national significant interest.
This four-week project [19 July – 15 August] in Snowdonia National Park brings together a wealth of knowledge in a non-invasive survey of the upper and lower houses at Brynkir, Garndolbenmaen. It aims to record the ground plan, elevations and chronology of the lower house, contrasting and comparing it with that of the upper house and the tower. A limited geophysical survey of the immediate area around the upper and lower houses will establish whether any structures survive beneath current ground surface level.
Nine students from Cardiff University will help gather data, gaining valuable experience in the field, and advancing the special research topic of project director Mark Baker, a PhD research candidate within the University’s School of History, Archaeology and Religion.
Explaining the potential significance of the project, Mark Baker explains:
‘Brynkir has both local and national significance. From a local perspective it is a large, mansion set at the heart of one of North West Wales’s former great estates. Nationally, the buildings themselves, in terms of planning and family provision, are identifiably Welsh in character, and unique to the region, being an example of the Unit System.’
Members of the public are welcome to discover more at an Open day at Cwm Pennant Youth Hostel (Plas Brynkir’s former Stables) on 14 August [11am to 4pm] at Golan, Gardolbenmaen, LL51 9AQ. Visitors are encouraged to bring a picnic and join a tour of the site by Cardiff University students.
The project is supported by Gwynedd Council, the Llŷn Area of Outstanding National Beauty, the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Dating Old Welsh Houses scheme, Bangor University, the Council for British Archaeology, Gwynedd Archives, the National Museums and Galleries of Wales and the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales.