Llanidloes is a town
A town is a human settlement larger than a village but smaller than a city. The size a settlement must be in order to be called a "town" varies considerably in different parts of the world, so that, for example, many American "small towns" seem to British people to be no more than villages, while...

 along the A470 road
A470 road
The A470 is a major long-distance connective spine road in Wales, running from Cardiff on the south coast to Llandudno on the north coast. It covers approximately 186 miles , over a zig-zagging route through the entirety of the country's mountainous central region, including the Brecon Beacons and...

 and B4518 road
B4518 road
The B4518 road is a road in Powys, central Wales, with a total length of . It begins at in Rhayader near the junction of the A470 road and the A44 road and leads eventually to the A470 again at Llanbrynmair at...

 in Powys
Powys is a local-government county and preserved county in Wales.-Geography:Powys covers the historic counties of Montgomeryshire and Radnorshire, most of Brecknockshire , and a small part of Denbighshire — an area of 5,179 km², making it the largest county in Wales by land area.It is...

, within the historic county boundaries of Montgomeryshire
Montgomeryshire, also known as Maldwyn is one of thirteen historic counties and a former administrative county of Wales. Montgomeryshire is still used as a vice-county for wildlife recording...

 , Mid Wales
Mid Wales
Mid Wales is the name given to the central region of Wales. The Mid Wales Regional Committee of the National Assembly for Wales covered the counties of Ceredigion and Powys and the area of Gwynedd that had previously been the district of Meirionydd. A similar definition is used by the BBC...


It is the first town on the River Severn
River Severn
The River Severn is the longest river in Great Britain, at about , but the second longest on the British Isles, behind the River Shannon. It rises at an altitude of on Plynlimon, Ceredigion near Llanidloes, Powys, in the Cambrian Mountains of mid Wales...

 . The town's Member of Parliament since 2010 has been the Conservative Party
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

's, Glyn Davies
Glyn Davies (Welsh politician)
Glyn Davies is a Welsh Conservative Party politician. He has been the Member of Parliament for Montgomeryshire since May 2010, and is a former member of the National Assembly for Wales in the Mid and West Wales region .-Background:Educated at Castle Caereinion...

, for the constituency of Montgomeryshire
Montgomeryshire (UK Parliament constituency)
Montgomeryshire is a constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Created in 1542, it elects one Member of Parliament , traditionally known as the knight of the shire, by the first-past-the-post system of election.The Montgomeryshire Welsh Assembly...



The town is close to the large dam
A dam is a barrier that impounds water or underground streams. Dams generally serve the primary purpose of retaining water, while other structures such as floodgates or levees are used to manage or prevent water flow into specific land regions. Hydropower and pumped-storage hydroelectricity are...

 and reservoir Llyn Clywedog. There is a scenic mountain road connecting Machynlleth
Machynlleth is a market town in Powys, Wales. It is in the Dyfi Valley at the intersection of the A487 and the A489 roads.Machynlleth was the seat of Owain Glyndŵr's Welsh Parliament in 1404, and as such claims to be the "ancient capital of Wales". However, it has never held any official...

 and Llanidloes.

Llanidloes is popular with hikers who walk on the scenic footpaths surrounding the town, including Glyndwr's Way
Glyndwr's Way
Glyndŵr's Way is a long distance footpath in mid Wales. It runs for in an extended loop through Powys between Knighton and Welshpool.- History :...

, which in conjunction with the Offa's Dyke
Offa's Dyke
Offa's Dyke is a massive linear earthwork, roughly followed by some of the current border between England and Wales. In places, it is up to wide and high. In the 8th century it formed some kind of delineation between the Anglian kingdom of Mercia and the Welsh kingdom of Powys...

 path forms a 160-mile circuit around Mid Wales
Mid Wales
Mid Wales is the name given to the central region of Wales. The Mid Wales Regional Committee of the National Assembly for Wales covered the counties of Ceredigion and Powys and the area of Gwynedd that had previously been the district of Meirionydd. A similar definition is used by the BBC...

 and local passage over the spine of the Cambrian Mountains
Cambrian Mountains
The Cambrian Mountains are a series of mountain ranges in Wales, reaching from, and including, the South Wales mountains of the Brecon Beacons, north Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion, the Black Mountains of eastern Wales, to Snowdonia in North Wales...


The Sarn Sabrina Walk - a 25-mile circular walk from Llanidloes to the source of the Severn and back - has been held yearly on the Saturday preceding the Late Spring Bank Holiday since 2006. In 2007 the Semi Sabrina, a 12-mile circular walk, was added. Information on the route can be found on the Llanidloes website.
The Hafren Forest
Hafren Forest
The Hafren Forest lies North-West of Llanidloes, an ancient market town situated in Mid-Wales.Covering around 40 square kilometres, and consisting of mainly Pine and Spruce trees, the Forest takes its name from the Afon Hafren which rises in a deep peat bog approximately 800m outside its western...

 is also used for car rallies such as Rally GB
Rally GB
Wales Rally GB is the largest and most high profile motor rally in the United Kingdom. It is a round of the FIA World Rally Championship and was formerly a round of the MSA British Rally Championship and is based in and around the city of Cardiff in Wales...

 and motorcycle Enduro events throughout the year.

As of February 2007 there were 17 licensed drinking establishments in the town.


Llanidloes takes its name from the early seventh century Celtic Saint
A saint is a holy person. In various religions, saints are people who are believed to have exceptional holiness.In Christian usage, "saint" refers to any believer who is "in Christ", and in whom Christ dwells, whether in heaven or in earth...

 Idloes (Llan-Idloes = the Church of St Idloes), after whom its parish church
Parish church
A parish church , in Christianity, is the church which acts as the religious centre of a parish, the basic administrative unit of episcopal churches....

 is named. The town was given a charter to hold a market in 1289 but existed at least 400 years before that, during which time it was part of the cantref of Arwystli
Arwystli was a cantref in medieval Wales, located in the headland of the River Severn in what is now the county of Powys. It was chiefly associated with the Kingdom of Powys, but was heavily disputed between Powys, Gwynedd, and the Norman Marcher Lords for hundreds of years, and was the scene of...


The area around Llanidloes was once important for the mining of lead and silver, and the town had a thriving flannel industry. It was also notorious as a focus of industrial unrest during the 19th century Chartist
Chartism was a movement for political and social reform in the United Kingdom during the mid-19th century, between 1838 and 1859. It takes its name from the People's Charter of 1838. Chartism was possibly the first mass working class labour movement in the world...

 revolt in 1839, a campaign for democratic rights prompted by the collapse of the local textile industry. During the unrest, three local people were arrested and held in a local hotel until the protesters forced their release. The town was controlled by the protesters until a detachment of Shropshire Yeomanry
Shropshire Yeomanry
The Shropshire Yeomanry was a yeomanry regiment of the British Army, first raised in 1795, which served as a cavalry and dismounted infantry regiment in the First World War and as a cavalry and an artillery regiment in the Second World War, before being amalgamated with the Shropshire Royal Horse...

 arrived and restored Government authority. Ringleaders were arrested, tried and sentenced to imprisonment or transportation
Penal transportation
Transportation or penal transportation is the deporting of convicted criminals to a penal colony. Examples include transportation by France to Devil's Island and by the UK to its colonies in the Americas, from the 1610s through the American Revolution in the 1770s, and then to Australia between...


Llanidloes formerly had a railway station, opened in 1864 by the Llanidloes and Newtown Railway
Llanidloes and Newtown Railway
The Llanidloes and Newtown Railway was an early Welsh railway. It was absorbed by the Cambrian Railway. A section of the line - from Newtown to where the later Cambrian Line diverges to Machynlleth, at the former Moat Lane Junction, remains in use...

. The station building contained the railway company offices. The building is in the Georgian
Georgian architecture
Georgian architecture is the name given in most English-speaking countries to the set of architectural styles current between 1720 and 1840. It is eponymous for the first four British monarchs of the House of Hanover—George I of Great Britain, George II of Great Britain, George III of the United...

 style and resembles an early 19th century Gentleman's country residence. Closer inspection reveals that the scale has been changed - imagine the Georgian gentleman to be 10 feet tall, and the building is then in perfect Georgian proportion. The Llanidloes and Newtown railway eventually formed part of the Mid Wales line of the Cambrian Railway, linking it with Cardiff, but most of this was closed on 31 December 1962. The Llanidloes by-pass road runs along a section of the former railway, and the station still stands beside this road. It is now restored and occupied by small businesses.
The half-timbered Old Market Hall stands at the crossroads of the four streets of the original medieval town. Built around 1600, it is the only surviving building of this type in Wales. Assize courts were held in the hall around 1605, and John Wesley
John Wesley
John Wesley was a Church of England cleric and Christian theologian. Wesley is largely credited, along with his brother Charles Wesley, as founding the Methodist movement which began when he took to open-air preaching in a similar manner to George Whitefield...

 preached from a pulpit
Pulpit is a speakers' stand in a church. In many Christian churches, there are two speakers' stands at the front of the church. Typically, the one on the left is called the pulpit...

 stone on the open ground floor in 1748.

There are many notable timber framed buildings in the town and St Idloes Church has a 15th century hammerbeam roof
Hammerbeam roof
Hammerbeam roof, in architecture, is the name given to an open timber roof, typical of English Gothic architecture, using short beams projecting from the wall.- Design :...

 with striking carved angels. When Cwmhir Abbey
Cwmhir Abbey
Cwmhir Abbey , near Llandrindod Wells in Powys, is a Welsh Cistercian monastery founded in 1176 by Cadwallon ap Madog. A spurious tale was later recorded that the abbey was founded in 1143 by Meredudd ap Maelgwn at Ty-faenor, and then refounded at the present location near the village of...

 was dissolved by Henry VIII in 1536, some of its 13th century arches were dismantled and reassembled in St Idloes Church, where they can still be seen. Other local attractions include a museum containing a famous two-headed sheep, and the nearby Hafren Forest
Hafren Forest
The Hafren Forest lies North-West of Llanidloes, an ancient market town situated in Mid-Wales.Covering around 40 square kilometres, and consisting of mainly Pine and Spruce trees, the Forest takes its name from the Afon Hafren which rises in a deep peat bog approximately 800m outside its western...

, known for its red kite
Red Kite
The Red Kite is a medium-large bird of prey in the family Accipitridae, which also includes many other diurnal raptors such as eagles, buzzards, and harriers. The species is currently endemic to the Western Palearctic region in Europe and northwest Africa, though formerly also occurred just...

s. Two masonry arch bridge
Arch bridge
An arch bridge is a bridge with abutments at each end shaped as a curved arch. Arch bridges work by transferring the weight of the bridge and its loads partially into a horizontal thrust restrained by the abutments at either side...

s, the Long Bridge and the Short Bridge, were designed by Thomas Penson
Thomas Penson
Thomas Penson was the County Surveyor of Montgomeryshire from 1817, and designer of a number of masonry arch bridges over the River Severn and elsewhere....


The town formerly had a significant industrial component. Apart from textiles, the railway provided an outlet for the nearby Van
Van, Llanidloes
Van is the Anglicised placename for a small hamlet to the north west of Llanidloes in Powys, Mid Wales.It is also often spelt "Fan", with the full, correct Welsh language name being "Y Fan"...

 lead mines and there was an iron-working company (finally closed in the early 1980s) that produced components for mining, railway and other machinery.

Results from a statistical analysis (2003) of the Y chromosome (genetic genealogy) of locals whose paternal grandfather was born within a thirty kilometre radius of the town suggests that there was a significant and unique German/Danish (Anglo-Saxons) presence in the area over 1500 years ago but this is not borne out in any documents.

The headquarters of the Quilt
A quilt is a type of bed cover, traditionally composed of three layers of fiber: a woven cloth top, a layer of batting or wadding and a woven back, combined using the technique of quilting. “Quilting” refers to the technique of joining at least two fabric layers by stitches or ties...

 Association is at the Minerva Arts Centre; here they hold workshops and an annual exhibition of quilts.

Powys Local Health Board (LHB) announced that it wanted to make cuts at Llanidloes which would result in the downgrading and even closure of Llanidloes War Memorial Hospital. The Save Llanidloes Hospital Action Group was formed in response.

Culture and Environmentalism

Llanidloes has a reputation as a very "quirky" town, known for its liberal, counterculture
Counterculture is a sociological term used to describe the values and norms of behavior of a cultural group, or subculture, that run counter to those of the social mainstream of the day, the cultural equivalent of political opposition. Counterculture can also be described as a group whose behavior...

 atmosphere (even the police stationed in nearby Newtown call it "Planet Idloes"). Llanidloes is known as a popular home for ageing hippies.
The alternative atmosphere is immediately apparent upon visiting, thanks to the presence of a wholefood shop, a volunteer-run organic shop and a vegetarian wholefood café.

In April 2006, Llanidloes was awarded Fairtrade Town status by the Fairtrade Foundation
The Fairtrade Foundation
The Fairtrade Foundation is a charity based in the United Kingdom that works to empower disadvantaged producers in developing countries by tackling injustice in conventional trade, in particular by promoting and licensing the Fairtrade Mark, a guarantee that products retailed in the UK have been...

. Since October 2007 the annual Green Fair has attracted visitors to the town to listen to speakers on many 'green' issues and browse the stalls offering alternatives to energy expensive ways of life.

Each year the town hosts the Llanidloes Fancy Dress
Llanidloes Fancy Dress
Llanidloes Fancy Dress or Llani Fancy Dress is an annual street party in the town of Llanidloes and is one of the largest street parties in Wales. The event started in 1969 and takes place on the first Friday of July. "Revellers" dress up in costumes, including famous characters, the pubs stay...

 street party, described by local press as Wales' answer to the Notting Hill Carnival
Notting Hill Carnival
The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual event which since 1964 has taken place on the streets of Notting Hill, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea , London, UK each August, over two days...



Llanidloes Town Football Club
Llanidloes Town F.C.
Llanidloes Town Football Club are an association football club based in the Town of Llanidloes, Powys, Wales. The club currently plays in the Mid Wales League division 1 . Llanidloes Town Football Club dates back to 1875 and was once a major force not only in mid-Wales, but also throughout Non...

, established in 1875, play in the Mid Wales League Division 1.

Llanidloes rugby union
Rugby union
Rugby union, often simply referred to as rugby, is a full contact team sport which originated in England in the early 19th century. One of the two codes of rugby football, it is based on running with the ball in hand...

 team, Llanidloes RFC
Llanidloes RFC
Llanidloes Rugby Football Club is a rugby union team from the town of Llanidloes, Mid Wales. Llanidloes RFC is a member of the welsh Rugby Union and is a feeder club for the Scarlets....

, play in the Welsh Rugby Union
Welsh Rugby Union
The Welsh Rugby Union is the governing body of rugby union in Wales, recognised by the International Rugby Board.The union's patron is Queen Elizabeth II, and her grandson Prince William of Wales became the Vice Royal Patron of the Welsh Rugby Union as of February 2007.-History:The roots of the...


Llanidloes Ladies F.C.
Llanidloes Ladies F.C.
Llanidloes Ladies F.C. are an association football club based in the Town of Llanidloes, Powys, Wales. The team currently plays in the Welsh Premier League which is the top tier of Women's Football in Wales...

 play in both the Welsh National League and North Powys League


Llanidloes High School
Llanidloes High School
Llanidloes High School, is an 11-18 yr comprehensive school with 860 pupils on roll in Llanidloes, Powys, Mid Wales...

 is a prolific bilingual secondary school; in 2009, 7% of its A-Level pupils were successfully accepted into Oxbridge colleges.

Llanidloes Primary school is a bilingual primary school.

Notable people

See :Category:People from Llanidloes

  • Elinor Bennett
    Elinor Bennett
    Elinor Bennett is a Welsh harpist.Bennett was born in Llanidloes, Wales. As a harpist, she is one of the foremost performers in the world. She has recorded twelve solo albums, and is one of the organisers of the Wales International Harp Festival. She also runs an annual 'Harp College'...

     (b. 1943), harpist
  • Mickey Evans
    Mickey Evans (Welsh footballer)
    Michael Graham "Mickey" Evans is a Welsh former footballer who had a long playing career in the Football League with Wrexham.-Career:...

     (b. 1947), footballer
  • John Ceiriog Hughes
    John Ceiriog Hughes
    John Ceiriog Hughes , was a Welsh poet and well-known collector of Welsh folk tunes. Sometimes referred to as the "Robert Burns of Wales"...

    (b. 1832), romantic poet and stationmaster

External links

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