Lodge Park, just on the outskirts of Tre'r Ddôl, was once a medieval deer park, originally called Bod Frigau, and apparently part of the northern boundary ditch and bank can still be seen, but I've not had a chance to explore yet. At some stage the land came into the ownership of the Pryse family of Gogerddan, who owned vast tracts thereabouts. Richard Pryse was created 1st Baronet of Gogerddan in 1641, and Lodge Park was built during the time of one of his sons, Carbery - later Sir Carbery - Pryse. A Mrs Powell of Nanteos wrote in "A Hunting Diary" in 1926: "Lodge Park is modern by the side of Gogerddan and Nanteos, built as it was in the 17th century by Lady Pryse during the prolonged absences of Sir Carbery Pryse in London, whither he was called by parliamentary business. It is a curiosity among houses, the walls being of earth six feet thick. Sir Carbery Pryse, as already said, hunted the family pack for some years about the end of the seventeenth century; the keenest of the keen, he once, in 1693, rode from London to Lodge Park, over 200 miles in forty-eight hours, bent on a day of sport". Elsewhere this ride is said to have been in delight at his winning a 10 year dispute with the Crown over the ownership of a mine on his estate. Sir Carbery died 1694, but his descendants maintained a presence at Lodge Park for many generations. In "A Hunting Diary" it is stated that in 1869 Col Pryse of Lodge Park was Master of Foxhounds, and that a Mr. and Mrs. Fryer were "of Lodge Park". An entry for 1872 mentioned that Pryse Pryse Pryse lived there, keeping up with the tradition of maintaining a pack of hounds. Kelly's 1895 Directory of South Wales mentions that "Lodge Park is the seat of Pryse Pryse Pryse Esq.; the mansion is a stone edifice, in a park of 100 acres, and commands fine views of the surrounding country; Sir Pryse Pryse Bart. and the Bishop of St. David's are the chief landowners". PPP died in 1900 from blood poisoning from a fox bite, and the 1910 and 1914 editions of Kelly's Directory reported it to be the home John James Esq, JP. It was put up for sale along with other parts of the Gogerddan estate in 1930. A Mr. Musty apparently lived there in the 1960s, and the house is currently occupied by a commercial firm, The Hayes McKenzie Partnership, which reportedly provides consultancy services on all aspects of acoustics, noise and vibration. Coniferous forest that had been planted on the estate is now being harvested, and deciduous trees planted in their place.The Hatters of Tre'r Ddôl
A book I've just discovered recounts how Tre'r Ddôl was once the centre of a thriving little hat-making industry. There had been a fulling mill in the village from at least the 17th Century, and felt hat making grew to become quite a local occupation. Families in the farms above Tre'r Ddôl - Llety'r Fran, Llwyn Wallter, Ynys Tudor, for example - busied themselves making hats and selling them at the markets. However, fashions eventually changed, silk hats came in and hard felt hats went out, and by the 1870s the cottage industry died, having existed in the area for about 100 years.
Reference: "Ottakar's Local History Series - Aberystwyth", ©
Ottakar's 2001. Published by Tempus Publishing Ltd.
ISBN 0 7524 2298 7