Porth Swtan ... A family connection.
by Peter Richards
Aerial view of Porth Swtan and Richards farms.
My Great Grandfather, Robert Richards, (1849-1928), lived at Clegir Mawr near Porth Swtan, raising a family of 10 children. (He was one of 14 children).
The aerial view of Porth Swtan shows the position of Clegir Mawr and other nearby farms that were, later, occupied by some of his children. My Grandfather, Thomas, (1875-1934), lived at Penllain farm.
Visits to the numerous relatives in the area always ended with a rush for the bus to Holyhead, loaded down with butter and ham and fresh eggs. Following a long tradition of large families, (I was one of 14), those war years and after were devoid of anything that was, "off-ration". Early photos show me as a well-fed and robust child and I believe that our visits to the Richards families of Llanrhyddlad were responsible for that.
Another connection to Llanrhyddlad is more tortuous, involving Sir William Thomas, (1836-1915) the famous local lad that took himself off to Liverpool and became one of the richest ship-owners in Britain.
The Grandfather of Robert Richards, (mentioned above), had a son, Robert, (1811-1887. His grand-daughter, Anita Elizabeth married George Henry Thomas, ship-owner,the son of Sir William Thomas. They were married in 1907 at Llangefni.
Ten minutes north of Bonw Farm is the monument erected to Sir William. He was responsible for the building of Bethel Hen Chapel in Llanrhyddlad.
Happy days .... a long, long time ago.