Caerwys is a small town with a lively and vibrant community in Flintshire, North Wales. Although being just under two miles from the A55 Expressway the town is often passed-by unnoticed by travellers, yet it is surrounded by areas of outstanding natural beauty with stunning views across mountains and valleys. Its proximity to the Expressway makes it an ideal location for touring North Wales including the beautiful Conwy Valley, Conwy Castle and to the east the English Borderlands including the ancient walled town of Chester.
Despite having a small population Caerwys has three public houses, two with restaurants, a general store, delicatessen, two butchers, a baker, (no candle stick makers), a pharmacy and newsagent, hairdresser and garage. It also benefits from a Golf course, tennis court, children's playground and a bowling green.
Walks, Cycle Trails and Other Activities
Caerwys sits to the north of Moel y Parc, a hill in the Clwydian Range and part of the Clwyd Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. There are many walks criss-crossing the landscape in this beautiful area of Flintshire and both the Clwydian Way and the Offa's Dyke Path pass within 2 miles of Caerwys.
Should you prefer cycling there many trails on the country lanes throughout the Clwyd Hills, and the Clwyd Hills offer some of the best designated Mountain Bike Trails in the United Kingdom.
Having been granted a Royal Charter in 1290 it is one of the smallest "towns" in Great Britain, and Caerwys can be said to have a disproportionate amount of history for a town of its size. As the name suggests, Caerwys was once a Roman outpost, but it is most famous for the eisteddfodau or poetry festivals which have been held in the town for almost a thousand years.
According to tradition, the first was summoned in about 1100 by Gruffydd ap Cynan, the liberator of Gwynedd from the rule of the Norman overlord Hugh Lupus. Another was held in 1523, and in 1567 Queen Elizabeth I gave permission for a competitive bardic assembly in the town.
The town's later history is dominated by its connection with the United States of America and Pennsylvania in particular.
The English King Charles ll gave William Penn land in America which to-day is known as Pennsylvania. William Penn was a Quaker and he was a friend of Thomas Wynne, who carried on his trade as a Barber - Surgeon in the town of Caerwys. In 1682 both William Penn and Thomas Wynne sailed on The Welcome to America with the blessing of Charles ll. Thomas Wynne became the first speaker of the Provincial Government, a Provincial Judge and was instrumental in agreeing treaties with the local Indian tribe the Lenni Lenape.
The original streets of Philadelphia were designed on the street grid pattern of Caerwys, and many properties were built in the region which reflected designs of properties in the Caerwys area. In 2006 members of the Wynne Genealogy Club, made up of descendants of Thomas Wynne, visited North Wales to follow in their ancestor's footsteps. They stayed some time in local houses in Caerwys and visited some of the many historical sites and tourist attractions of North Wales. More about Caerwys and the Thomas Wynne connection >> http://www.caerwys-town.com/thomaswynne.html
St Michael's Church: The Roman connection continues with the ancient Church of St Michael's in the town. It is said that the foundations of the church tower were originally part of a Roman observation tower. Whether true or not the Church can be traced back many hundreds of years. It has a late 13th century tower and nave to which a chancel and a north aisle were later added. The building contains a 13th century effigy , broken sepulchral slabs of 14th century, and a range of wooden furnishings of
the 17th century. The church has two lychgates, one originally dating to 15th century.
The earliest reference to St Michaels is 1244 when it was nominated as a meeting place between Prince David and King Henry III and was referred to again in 1284, when compensation was paid to the rector for damage done to the church during Edward I's incursion into Wales. It is evident that there was an existing settlement and church prior to the laying out of the planned town from 1290. Whether the church, however, can be taken back into early medieval times remains to be satisfactorily established.
Explore the towns and villages of the old county of Flintshire. Winding country lanes lead to historic villages, with ancient churches and Red Telephone Boxes. Yes little has changed in some of the rural areas of Flintshire. Cross the rolling hills of the Clwyd Range and you are in the Vale of Clwyd with town after town and village after village offering old churches, ancient castles, prehistoric burial chambers and simply mile after mile of rolling hills and beautiful country lanes.
A few miles further to the Vale of Conwy and the Conwy Valley Railway at 27 miles long offers one of the most beautiful rail experiences in Britain. A breathtaking range of scenery unfolds before your eyes, from majestic crags and pastoral delights of the upper valleys to the historic castles of Dolwyddelan and Conwy, through an estuary rich in wildlife, You glimpse fairytale landscapes, ancient quarries and tracks, forests and the high peaks of Snowdonia.
Just 25 minutes to the East by car and you will find one of the United Kingdom's most popular visitor attractions. The ancient walled town of Chester with the renowned black and white timbered shopping streets known as "The Rows", the traditional Town Crier, Roman amphitheatre, Chester Zoo and pleasure boat trips on the beautiful River Dee.
Slightly further afield but easily reachable on a day trip from Caerwys and we come to the popular city of Liverpool. With its many attractions including the Mersey Ferry Boat trips, the Beatles Tours, visits to the world famous football clubs of Liverpool FC and Everton FC.
If Golf is your game then there are an abundance of Golf Courses in this region of Flintshire and North Wales.