Wednesday 11 October 2023 at 7pm

Edward Parry is a retired history teacher who has researched and published widely in the field of art and architecture in Wales.

Exploring North Wales with the Rev. John Parker, 1798-1860

The Rev. John Parker (1798-1860), artist and antiquary, produced an astonishing body of work over several decades and a large collection of paintings, drawings and journals that are held at the National Library of Wales.  He was incumbent of two parishes either side of the Welsh border and made dramatic changes to both churches. He travelled widely in Great Britain but it was Snowdonia that he loved and he made a succession of visits to the area that are recorded in his journals and in hundreds of sketches and paintings.

This talk focuses on North Wales and examines his achievements as a landscape artist and also a recorder of the architecture and furnishings of many churches in the area, many of them subsequently drastically altered. His watercolours and pencil drawings are of immense cultural value and are also of great beauty.

Wednesday 8 November 2023 at 7 pm

Ross Cook is an archaeologist and experienced dendrochronologist who, working with the Oxford Dendrochronology Laboratory, has done a lot of sampling and analysis for Discovering Old Welsh Houses. He runs his own archaeology and heritage consultancy out of Lampeter and is archaeologist for St David’s Cathedral as well as to Christchurch Priory, Dorset and Canterbury Cathedral.  

Recording Ruthin - Investigating the historic buildings of a town and its countryside. 

Those of you who know Ruthin (or heard Gareth Evans talking to us about the development of the town in February) will appreciate the rich legacy of medieval buildings in the town. Recent recording and tree-ring dating in and around Ruthin, have revealed a large number of early buildings, many from the fifteenth century, that reflect its status, together with the wealth of the surrounding parishes. This talk will contain ‘hot off the press’ material!

Wednesday 6 December 2023 at 7 pm

Helen Williams-Ellis worked as a TV producer and director, overseeing programmes with a focus on Welsh subjects. She then did her doctorate on the life and image of the early modern gentlewoman Catrin of Berain.  She is on the Advisory Board of the Institute for the Study of Welsh Estates based at Bangor University.

Sex, Power, Marriage: Katheryn of Berain and her Four Husbands

Katheryn of Berain was married four times. Why did she marry – whom did she marry – and how did she become known as the ‘Mother of Wales’?

Wednesday 10 Januaryr 2024 at 7 pm

Danny McCaroll (FLSW) has formally retired from the Department of Geography, Swansea University, but remains a part of the research team. He was coordinator of the EU-funded 'Millennium Project', which reconstructed the climate of Europe over the last one thousand years. Welsh Houses and the climate of the past

The main interests of the Swansea tree-ring team are in using the chemistry of oak timbers to date old houses, and then using the results to reconstruct the climate of the past. In this lecture, Professor McCarroll will discuss how past changes in climate may have impacted on the population of Wales and how those impacts are reflected in some old Welsh houses. 

Wednesday 14 February  2024 7 pm

Scott Lloyd is Research Manager at the Royal Commission for the Ancient and Historic Monuments of Wales and one of the key players in the prize-winning Deep Mapping Estate Archives Project.

More than just a map: The Ordnance Survey County survey large-scale mapping

The Ordnance Survey County survey was an enormous undertaking and the maps it produced are a valuable record of the nineteenth century landscape. But how did they gather the information that is shown on the maps, especially for boundaries and antiquities?


Wednesday 13 March  2024  7 pm

Judith Alfrey is Head of Heritage Regeneration and Conservation at Cadw and a trustee of the Vernacular Architecture Group.

From listing to local heritage: finding value in historic buildings. Listing often seems a top-down process, and in many ways it is. But every listed building is someone’s local heritage. More and more, those responsible for designation are working with local communities to capture what local distinctiveness means to them

Wednesday 10 April 2024 at 7pm

 Martin Cherry DOWH trustee

After Glyndŵr: Building in an age of anarchy

Over the last decade or so, a substantial number of buildings in Wales have been securely tree-ring dated to the fifteenth century, several of them built during or within a few years of the Glyndŵr wars. Others – houses, courts, shops and churches – can be dated by analogy to around the same period. At a time of acute political uncertainty, who built them – and why? (The subject of the talk might be adapted if there are any exciting new research results to announce.)

Wednesday 1 May 2024 at 7 pm

Dr Jenny Day Research Fellow, University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies in Aberystwyth

“The fair court of St Bernard”: the poets’ view of the Cistercian abbeys of Wales.

The medieval poets can tell us a lot about buildings and the life that went on in them. Dr Jenny Day is an expert in this field and working on a book on poetry relating to Valle Crucis Abbey. Her talk will look at the architecture at Valle Crucis and other houses, and about the broader material culture relating to burials, worship and feasting. 

Wednesday 19 June  2024 at 7.15 pm

This lecture will follow Discovering Old Welsh Houses AGM scheduled for 6.15 pm.

Robin Grove-White is Professor Emeritus of Environment and Society at Lancaster University and Chair of the Advisory Board, Institute for the Study of Welsh Estates, Bangor University.

 My dad the Communist landowner and other Anglesey tales (provisional title)

All talks will be held on the second Wednesday in each month and will all start at 7 p.m. They will be given in English. Reminders and Zoom invites will be sent by email to all members nearer the time and fuller details of each presentation will be available on the website.  Fuller details about the 2023/24 programme will appear later in the Year.

Please note your microphone will be muted when you enter. Please leave it muted until the end of the talk, when there will be an opportunity for questions. It is also helpful if you would turn your video off as this helps the quality of the presentation.

Our  Zoom meetings programme  for 2023 -24

Unless otherwise stated, all start at 7 p.m.     All talks will be in English

Dates for Your Diary

DOWH Lecture Series 2023/24

List of recorded talks


03 November 2023

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Our Events

Owing to Covid we decided to deliver our talks via Zoom. This has proved popular and attendances have generally been far higher than for talks held in physical venues. We recognise that face-to-face contact is an important aspect of our activities and, as restrictions have eased, branch activities are gradually resuming with real meetings, workshops, talks and visits.

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