Church Street Llanrwst Conwy_County Wales
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The Llanrwst Almshouses have for four centuries provided free housing for 'twelve poor men' over the age of sixty-five, living in Llanrwst or the outlying parishes. The Almsmen would be assured of a warm room and a small purse for the rest of their natural lives. Sir John Wynn also provided funds for a large blue cloak with a silver eagle emblazoned on its left arm, a reminder to Almsmen and the community whose generosity had established the Charity. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries Llanrwst was nationally renowned for the talent of its harpmakers and players. Two Llanrwst harpists, Rowland Griffith and Dafydd Roberts lived their last years at the Almshouses. Rowland Griffith (fl.18thC) continued to make harps whilst at the Bowls, and it was said that before he added strings to his instruments he would leave. Welsh superstition dictated that when a harp was strung it would absorb any noise that it was exposed to. Griffith complained bitterly that the Almshouses were full of gossiping old women, polluting the purity of his harps! Dafydd Roberts (1780 - 1820) was known locally for his astounding strength and endurance. Once he pushed a wheelbarrow to Chester to collect materials. Dafydd, his brother Thomas and relative David Roberts.
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