Dilwyn VillageHereford
Herefordshire HR4 8HL 
The word Dilwyn is thought to be Anglo Saxon for a hidden place. It still is a hidden gem of a village in Herefordshire, England located about 11 miles (18 km) north of the city of Hereford, and 6 miles (9 km) west of Leominster.
Mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086, present day Dilwyn is the result of more than 1,000 years of settlement. Dilwyn has a village green, numerous black and white half-timbered buildings and a convivial local pub. It is worth pausing here to stretch your legs and have a look round.
St Mary the Virgin Church
The oldest building still standing in the village, is St Mary’s Church. Built of local sandstone, it is well worth going inside. The interior has hardly changed since medieval times and there is some beautiful original stained glass. The church is a Grade I Listed building.
War Memorial
The War Memorial in the churchyard is a particularly moving tribute to all the young residents of Dilwyn Parish who made the supreme sacrifice. In the First World War 24 parishioners were killed or went missing, and in World War II 4 parishioners lost their lives. Unlike most memorials, this one actually lists the names of the fallen and is a good reminder of how war decimated these small communities.
Karen Court
Stretching down from the church is a row of 17th century black and white half-timbered cottages known as Karen Court. Although looking as if they were always cottages, these buildings were originally the farm structures belonging to The Great House.
They included a granary, barn and tallat (apple or grain store). Exactly in the centre of the row can be seen the location of the barn doors that led into the inner yard. The two right hand cottages were already in existence before the farm buildings were sympathetically converted into nineteen dwellings.
The Great House
One of the grandest houses in the village is The Great House, a timber-framed manor house built in the 16th century but greatly altered. It is recognisable from its imposing 18th century wrought-iron entrance gates. The owners provide luxury Bed and Breakfast, Fine Dining and access to the magnificent garden. For non-residents, the garden is sometimes open under the National Gardens Scheme.
The Crown Inn
Overlooking the Village Green is the centre of village life - the Crown Inn. Originally a 17th century coaching inn, the timber-framed building is hidden by changes made in the late 18th or early 19th century. Some of the original framework is still visible inside the public areas.
The pub is actually owned by the Parish Council and is run as a tenanted Free House serving Real Ale and good pub food in the bars and delightful garden (weather permitting). Old photographs of Dilwyn adorn the rooms.
Old Forge Tea Room
The Tea Room occupies the original 17th century forge next to the pub. From the 1650s until the mid1900s, horses were shoed and farm tools were made here.
The Tea Room is open from late spring until early autumn. In this quaint old building, tea, coffee and delicious homemade cakes can be enjoyed. During warmer weather, refreshment can be taken in the lovely old fashioned English garden.
Take a good look at the Forge’s two end gable walls. From the visible framing timbers it can be seen how the building was extended from its original single storey form.
- For more information on opening hours:
Tel:     +44 (0)1544 319306
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Old Forge Craft Centre
Next door to the Tea Room is the Old Forge Craft Centre. This eco-friendly building is a newly converted barn which has been turned into a warm, fully accessible craft space where classes are run throughout the year. Traditional wooden ceiling trusses are a particular feature in this building.
The Village Green
A Village Green is an essential part of any village but this one is quite a new addition. It was formerly fenced farmland and thankfully when the farm and land were sold, no re-development was allowed in the area of the green and the land was eventually donated to the village. It is now a protected open space.
We already know that Dilwyn is a very old village but it is hard to believe that it actually had its own castle as well. It was an early Norman motte-and-bailey type structure with a shell keep with 5 to 6 foot thick walls. Unfortunately, the remains are hidden away in private gardens and not open to the public.
One other historic feature near the village that you can identify is an important Roman road. Dilwyn’s eastern parish boundary is marked by the western route of Watling Street, the roman road that crossed the country from south-east England to Wales.
The modern A4110 follows this ancient road along the boundary to Stretford Bridge. Stretford, derived from street ford, indicates that there was a ford here for the roman road. Roman roads are notoriously identifiable by their straightness. It has been speculated that the lane running into Dilwyn from the A4110 is also a roman road.
Contact & Further Information
To discover more about Dilwyn visit their community website.
Getting There
- By Car
Leave Leominster on the A44, signed Rhayader, turning left about a mile(1.6 km) from the town centre, at Baron’s Cross. After about a mile you will reach Monkland. Continue through Monkland on the A44 for a further 3 miles (4.8 km) then turn left to Dilwyn.
Google Maps - Dilwyn