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Pen Y Llechwedd An Update

Pen Y Llechwedd An Update

A few weeks ago now, we were blessed with a visit from one of the original occupants of our home, Alan Johnson, along with his wife Barbra, and their nephew Ian and his wife Karen. Ian took the time to get in touch with me after recognising the house in the article was published in the Sunday Mail. We had been exchanging emails for some time, and Ian had given us a great deal of information about our home, including the plans I shared a few weeks ago, and the information the the house name was not actually Pen Y Llechwedd when the family owned the home.


Note the fence, we will be returning our fence to very similar.

What we were unprepared for, was how very much this visit would mean to us. Alan is a very sprightly 91 year old who enjoyed touring the house and giving his memories from the time he lived here, which was some 30 years of his life. He and his wife Barbra shared our bedroom when first married. The smiles on their faces as the entered the house, and had the opportunity to share their stories is something we were so blessed to experience and will not forget. Do you know, it has given us even more inspiration to fully restore our beauty to it’s original condition.

Ian had so thoughtfully prepared a copy of any of the family photos he could find, that showed the house as it was when the family lived here. But it didn’t stop at that, were we blessed to be given a copy of his father’s Mervyn’s story. Mervyn also shared some wonderfully memories of his time in the house, for example the following exert:

The drive into our yard at 8 Waghorn St was on the northern side of the property and the southern side Mum had a vegetable garden. We grew a large variety of fruit and vegetables: beetroot, lettuce, tomatoes, navel oranges, mandarins, watermelons, rockmelons, eshalottes, red cabbage, white grapes, cauliflower, strawberries and in the back yard mangoes, persimmons, custard apples, peaches, china flats, rosella plans and marmalade oranges for jam. Mother made a lot of jam as don Holt, the traveler, brought back Cape Gooseberries and rosellas from the country.


This a picture of Maud Johnson in the garden where our driveway now is.

We now know so much more of our home when it was first built and for its first 55 years. We had so much of the information we had gathered, confirmed and some of it was put right. It has inspired us to take make changes to our fence, which I had previously battled long and hard to keep, it has changed our plans (again) for the second extension, all because we feel a real longing to keep this families memories alive.


The lattice screens will not be making a come back, however they did really suit the home.

The Builder and I have always felt like we were simply custodians of our home, rather than home owners, now we feel this even more. In the coming weeks, I will share a tour around our home through Alan’s eyes.

What sort of stories could the walls in your home tell? Do you have a house that brings back wonderful memories?

Nicole xxx



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  1. Our flat is quite new but it’s funny while I was staying with friends in London, they were saying how one day they got a knock on the door from an elderly gentleman who used to live in their house. They invited him in and showed him around and he too told them stories of the house in the past. It so reminded me of your story and I was telling them about you and the newspaper etc! Who needs walls to speak, when you have the real life residents! What a treasure that house is, and how lucky that the house has you living in it to love it and preserve it so beautifully!

    1. Sammie, I love your comment and have shared my experience also on this subject. Hope you enjoy… Annette

    2. I so love that so many people are happy to share the memories they have of the time they lived in their homes. I can well imagine that the homes in London, would be so much older than our 100 year old youngin’. There is something very romantic about an elderly gentleman sharing his memories xx

  2. That’s just so beautiful. My dad visited his childhood home when he went back to England a couple of years ago. I would love to revisit my childhood homes, and also the home I had my babies in. I get very attached to our homes. This is really lovely post

    1. Thank you Mackenzie. We recently did a trip to my Dad’s home town and stopped to look at the house he was born in and then where he lived until we moved to Queensland. It brought back so many memories. xx

  3. How wonderful it is when humans connect over memories with their homes! Your stories nicole@thebuilderswife and sammie@theannoyedthyroid are lovely. Only a week ago when I was at our house in Brittany, an elderly frenchman with little English, pulled up at our house and proudly told me over the fence (which was getting a new coat of paint) his cousin was the artisan who had carved our elaborate antique front door. He was bursting with pride and delighted we seem to take great care in preserving it. Thank you both for sharing your stories.

    1. How wonderful, I can just imagine the pride in his voice. Such a sweet memory for him to share. Our homes have history, I love having the opportunity to connect with it. xx

  4. […] ornate ceilings and we first assumed this room to be a gentlemens room, although when the former original resident of the home came to visit we found this not to be so. Our thought when deciding how to decorate this space, was […]

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