Welsh Icons - Towns & Villages





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Painscastle (Welsh: Castell Paun) is a castle in Powys in mid Wales and also a village which takes its name from the castle.

The first castle was built by Pain Fitz John, probably about 1130. Pain was killed by a Welsh raiding party in 1137 and the area was taken over by the native Welsh ruler of Elfael, Madog ab Idnerth. It remained in Welsh hands until about 1195 when the area was captured by William de Braose who refortified the castle. In 1196 Rhys ap Gruffydd of Deheubarth defeated the Marcher lords in a battle at Radnor and besieged Painscastle, but did not actually take it. In 1198 Gwenwynwyn ab Owain of Powys raised a large army to besiege the castle, but was heavily defeated by an army led by the Justiciar, Geoffrey Fitz Peter,

William de Braose fell out with king John of England in 1208 and was forced to flee the kingdom. Painscastle was apparently occupied by Iorwerth Clud. In 1231 the castle was rebuilt in stone by king Henry III and Hubert de Burgh as part of a campaign against Llywelyn the Great. In 1233 the castle was claimed by Ralph Tosny, whose family held it until the castle was taken by Llywelyn the Last in 1265. Ralph Tosny was able to recover it in 1276. Little now remains of the castle other than the massive earthworks.

 Pubs/Bars in Painscastle:
 The Roast Ox
       LD2 3JL
 07071 225852

Painscastle (Pain's-Castle) - From 'A Topographical Dictionary of Wales' (1849)
PAINSCASTLE (PAIN'S-CASTLE), a hamlet and small village, in the parish of LlanbedrPainscastle, union of Hay, hundred of Painscastle, county of Radnor, South Wales, 6 miles (N. W. by W.) from Hay: the population is included in the return for the parish. It is situated in a vale near the northern bank of the Bâchwy stream, which nearly encircles the village; and was at one time of much greater importance than it is at present, having had a castle and a market. The former no longer exists, and the latter has been discontinued; fairs, however, continue to be held on May 12th, September 22nd, and December 15th, for horned cattle, for sheep, and horses. Under the act of 1832, to "Amend the Representation," this is a polling-place for the election of the knight of the shire; and the petty-sessions for the hundred are sometimes held here. For an historical notice of the castle, which was once so considerable as to give name both to the village and hundred, but of which the only vestige is the moat that surrounds the site, near the north-western extremity of the village, see the article on Llanbedr-Painscastle.


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