MABON

MABON, was the bardic name of William Abraham (1842-1922). Born in Cwmafan, he worked in collieries from the age of ten, but gained a reputation as a skilled negotiator with the mine owners. He became agent for the Cambrian Miners Association, and later treasurer for the Miners Federation of Great Britain, the most influential miner’s leader of his time.
From 1885 to 1910 he was MP for the Rhondda, first for the Liberals, then for Labour.
He had a holiday home in Llantwit Major at Bryn Illtyd, later the house where Glyn Daniel was brought up.

HOPKIN

Daniel Hopkin came from a humble family in Llantwit Major where his father had been a farm labourer but died in 1893 when Daniel was seven. Daniel was encouraged in the elementary school and later went to Carmarthen College, then to Cambridge to read law. He became a Labour MP for Carmarthen, then in 1941 he became a Metropolitan Magistrate, eventually presiding at Marlborough Street Court. He died in 1951.[See Vol.1]

DEERE

This is one of the oldest surnames associated with Llantwit Major, first appearing, with the Nicholls’, in an Inquisition Post Mortem for 1492, detailing the state of the Manor of Boverton and Llantwit Major. It seems that Robert Deere had benefitted from the decline of the manorial system to acquire his own plot of land. The Deeres were linked with Six Wells Farm acquired in 1505 when John Deere of the Court House married the daughter of David ap Howell of Llandow. They were sufficiently wealthy enough to build a sizable farmhouse which existed until the farm disappeared under the runways of RAF Llandow. The family were considered to be minor gentry and acceptable marriage partners for the likes of the Nicholls’ and the Seys’.The association with Six Wells ended in 1757. According to the Hearth tax Assessment of 1670, seven people with the surname Deere had property in the village, including Iltyd who ran two mills. (Iltyd Deere became a common name throughout the subsequent centuries.) During the eighteenth century the name crops up as lawyers, as Freemen of Cardiff and from the nineteenth century on in almost every aspect of life in Llantwit Major and it continues until this day.

DAVIES

Professor William H. Davies was Professor of Classics at Aberystwyth U. C. W. from 1947-1974. He was educated at Llantwit Major elementary school, Barry Boys Grammar School and University College Cardiff. He furthered his studies at Rome and Harvard and was very interested in the local archaeological sites at Caer Mead and the Monastery Field. Unfortunately ill health prevented him developing these interests on his retirement.[See Vol. 4]

DANIEL

Professor Glyn E. Daniel of Cambridge University was also a TV personality in the 1950s as chairman of the quiz show ‘Animal,Vegetable or Mineral.’ He was educated at Llantwit Major where his father was the headmaster of the elementary school. For his secondary education Glyn went to Barry County School for Boys and onto Cambridge in 1923 where he read Archaeology and Anthropology. He became a Fellow of St. John’s College and Disney Professor of Archaeology.[See Vol 3]

Read about ‘Animal, Vegetable, Mineral’ here at the BBC : BBC TV ‘Animal, Vegetable, Mineral’

 

CRAWSHAY

This branch of the ironmaster’s family were tenants at Dimlands , a large house on the St. Donats Road. Tudor Crawshay and his wife, Mary, from Kew, were there from 1900 to 1921. He became deputy Lieutenant of Glamorgan, J.P. and was vicar’s warden of St. Illtud’s Church. Their son Mervyn was killed in WW1 but their other son, Owen, married and lived in Tresillian House. He had one daughter Sylvia. [See Vol.5]

BASSETT.

The family descended from the Bassetts of Beaupre. One Llantwit branch descended from Christopher, who lived at Great House, Siggingstone. He married Mary Hooper who inherited Boverton House from her uncle in 1815. This became the family home for their six children. The house was sold after 1892. Until then, the spinster sisters, Mary and Joan, called “The Miss Bassetts”, lived there and were later joined by their widowed sister Mrs. Pemberton. The solicitor, Elias Bassett, was their father’s brother. He lived at Ivy or Court House, High St. He gave the land in Methodist Lane to build Tabernacle Chapel.

ANDREWS

The Andrews family kept the Post Office in Wesley Street, Llantwit Major from around 1870. The first Post Master was William Andrews. His son, Hughie Andrews, took over from him and remained as Post Master until 1941.Hughie Andrews was a sportsman, historian and photographer who recorded life in Llantwit Major in his diaries and by his photography. He has therefore provided a valuable archive of the town from the 1920s to the 1950s. [See Vols 1-7]