1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Llantrisant

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LLANTRISANT, a small town and a contributory parliamentary borough of Glamorganshire, Wales, picturesquely situated with a southern aspect, commanding a fine view of the vale of Glamorgan, in a pass on the mountain range which separates that vale from the valley of the Taff. The population of the parish in 1901 was 10,091 and of the contributory borough 2057. A branch of the Taff Vale railway running from Pontypridd to Cowbridge and Aberthaw has a station, Cross Inn, 1/2 m. below the town, while nearly 2 m. farther south it passes (near the village of Pontyclun) through Llantrisant station on the Great Western railway main line, which is 1561/4 m. by rail from London and 11 m. N.W. from Cardiff. The castle, which according to G. T. Clark was “second only to Cardiff in military importance,” dates from the reign of Henry III. or Edward I. Of the original building nothing remains, and of a later building only a tall and slender fragment. It was the head of the lordship of Miskin, a great part of which was in the hands of native owners, until the last of them, Howel ap Meredith, was expelled by Richard de Clare (1229–1262). Since then it has always been in the hands of the lord of Glamorgan. It was in the near neighbourhood of the town that Edward II. was captured in 1327. In 1426 the then lord of Glamorgan, Richard, 5th earl of Warwick, granted to the residents a charter confirming grants made by his predecessors in 1346, 1397 and 1424. The corporation was abolished in 1883, and its property (including 284 acres of common land) is administered by a town trust under a scheme of the charity commissioners. The “freemen” of the borough, however, still hold a court leet in the town-hall. The market formerly held here has been discontinued, but there are four annual fairs. The church was dedicated to three saints (Illtyd, Gwyno and Tyfodwg), whence the name Llantrisant. Originally a Norman building, most of the present fabric belongs to the 15th century. There are numerous chapels. Welsh is still the predominant language. Oliver Cromwell’s forbears were natives of this parish, as also was Sir Leoline Jenkins, secretary of state under Charles II. There are tinplate works at Pontyclun and numerous collieries in the district.