Documents: Bryn Dyffryn Estate, Llanrwst

Scope and Content

A collection of documents relating to the Bryn Dyffryn Estate and Hendre House, Llanrwst, comprising Mortgages, Leases, Conveyances, Abstracts of Title and miscellaneous papers. Most of the documents are mid to late 19th Century, and relate to the Moulsdale and Blackwall families.

Robert Owen Moulsdale (d.1883) was the son of John Moulsdale (d.1844) of the Gwyndy Coaching House, Anglesy, and the brother of Catherine (married Rev John Roberts of Rhiwlas, Anglesey) and Martha (married Henry Pritchard of Tre-ysgawen Hall, Anglesey). He inherited the Bryn Dyffryn Estate, Llanrwst from his father. This estate included land which was purchased by the Conwy and Llanrwst Railway Company and the London and North Western Railway Company in 1863.

John Blackwall (1790-1881) lived at Hendre House, Llanrwst from 1833. He wrote 'A History of the Spiders of Great Britain and Ireland' (2 vols., 1861-1864) and corresponded with Charles Darwin on the subject. His son, John Blackwall (1837-1900) married Margaret Sarah Moulsdale (d.1894) in 1866, the daughter of Robert Owen Moulsdale.

Margaret and John Blackwall had 6 children; the eldest, John Blackwall (1866-1936) inherited Hendre House when his father died in 1900. Margaret Jane (b.1868), the only daughter, married Frederick Archdale Wilson Tayler, originally of Musselburgh. In 1902, their address was Closelet School, Lausanne, Switzerland. The 2nd eldest son, Robert Moulsdale Blackwall (1870-1951), changed his name by deedpoll in 1895 to Robert Blackwall Moulsdale, thereby inheriting Bryn Dyffryn, his maternal grandfather's estate - Robert Owen Moulsdale had stipulated in his will that when he reached the age of 25, Robert should change his name in order to inherit. Robert was specifically excluded from bequests in his father's will, though he was a trustee (cf CX619/6/7 et al.). The other sons, and their addresses as listed in 1902 (in CX619/7/5), were Thomas Wendesley Blackwall (b.1871) of York Terrace, Llanrwst, William Stuart Blackwall (b.1875) of Haileybury, Ontario, Canada and Hugh Eric Blackwall (b.1877) of Carneddau, Llanrwst. Robert Blackwall Moulsdale later also lived at Newlands, Woodland Road, Colwyn Bay.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research. Access to some documents may be restricted due to Data Protection legislation, Conwy Archives will advise where this is the case. For details and opening hours see

Custodial History

These documents were deposited with other material at the Cornwall Record Office as accession 5060 in June 1996. Acknowledgement and receipt were sent to Mr R P Jones, c/o Stephens and Scown Solicitors, 3 Cross Lane, St Austell, Cornwall PL25 4AX. Mr Jones' grandfather, Salisbury Jones, was a solicitor and town clerk of Llanrwst and Betws-y-Coed UDC in the early 20th Century. The documents were transferred to Gloucestershire Record Office 16th May 1997, and subsequently transferred to Conwy Archives in December 2015.