Aberffraw (Welsh: Aberffraw)[1][2] is a small village and community on the south west coast of the Isle of Anglesey (Welsh: Ynys Môn), in Wales, by the west bank of the Afon Ffraw (Ffraw River). Access by road is by way of the A4080 and the nearest rail station is Bodorgan. The community includes Soar and Dothan.

St. Beuno's Church, Aberffraw - geograph.org.uk - 156921.jpg
Saint Beuno's Church
Aberffraw is located in Anglesey
Location within Anglesey
Population620 (2011)
OS grid referenceSH3568
  • Aberffraw
Principal area
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townTŶ CROES
Postcode districtLL63
Dialling code01407
PoliceNorth Wales
FireNorth Wales
UK Parliament
Senedd Cymru – Welsh Parliament
List of places
53°11′17″N 4°27′47″W / 53.188°N 4.463°W / 53.188; -4.463Coordinates: 53°11′17″N 4°27′47″W / 53.188°N 4.463°W / 53.188; -4.463
Coast near Aberffraw


In the early Middle Ages Aberffraw was the capital of the Kingdom of Gwynedd from c.860 AD until c.1170. Under the House of Aberffraw it came to be the most important political centre in medieval Wales. The Llys (royal court) remained the symbolic throne of the Kings of Gwynedd from the 9th century to the 13th century. The Royal Annals of Edward I of England show the Llys was dismantled in 1315 to provide building materials for nearby Beaumaris Castle.

...appeared to demonstrate the presence of a two-phase, round-angled, rectangular enclosure, at least 70m NNE-SSW, thought to represent a Roman military work, refurnished in the early medieval period as a llys (Princely court) enclosure; although a radio-carbon date centring on the period 27-387AD, appears to support this thesis, the identification of a Roman work is currently out of favour: the site of the llys, whose (partial?) dismantling is recorded in 1317, is regarded as uncertain: two sculptured heads, of apparent C13 style, are known from the village (White 1978): the putative curving angle of the enclosure has been suggested to hint at the former presence of a motte: excavations at the traditional site of the llys, about 650m to the WSW, recorded only C18 remains. Excavation, 1973-4 (White 1979).[3]

Aberffraw villageEdit


At the 2011 census, Aberffraw had a population of 620,[4] of which 67.5% speak Welsh.[5] Attractions near Aberffraw village include Llyn Coron (a lake), Barclodiad y Gawres, a Neolithic burial chamber and the tidal island of Cribinau with church of Saint Cwyfan perched on top. The church still holds services in the summer and is sometimes used for weddings. The village has a sandy beach, which was awarded the Blue flag rural beach award in 2005, and is on the Anglesey Coastal Path. There is a post office in the village. St Beuno's Church, Aberffraw, dates from the 12th century and is a Grade II* listed building.[6] The village also has an association football team. The village school, Ysgol Aberffraw, closed in 2011.[7]


Until the 2012 Isle of Anglesey electoral boundary changes an electoral ward in the same name existed. This ward also included part of the community of Llanfaelog. The total population was 1,370.[8] Since the boundary changes Aberfrraw has been part of a larger Bro Aberffraw ward which elects two county councillors to the Isle of Anglesey County Council.[9]


Aberffraw's population was 620, according to the 2011 census;[10] a 1.97% increase since the 608 people noted in 2001.[11]

The 2011 census showed 67.5% of the population could speak Welsh, a fall from 80.8% in 2001.[5]

In mythologyEdit

In Welsh mythology, Aberffraw features as the site of Branwen and Matholwch's wedding festival, where Efnysien maimed Matholwch's horses.[12]


  1. ^ "Search: Aberffraw". Enwau Cymru. University of Wales. Retrieved 16 April 2013.
  2. ^ Spelled variously in period sources, including Aberfrau.
  3. ^ "Aberffraw, Anglesey". gatehouse-gazetteer.info.
  4. ^ "Parish Headcounts: Isle of Anglesey". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Archived from the original on 26 May 2013. Retrieved 16 April 2013.
  5. ^ a b "2011 Census results by Community". Welsh Language Commissioner. 26 October 2012. Archived from the original on 14 September 2017. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
  6. ^ Cadw. "Church of St. Beuno (5270)". National Historic Assets of Wales. Retrieved 11 April 2019.
  7. ^ Jones, Geraint (15 July 2011). "Final bell looming for Ysgol Aberffraw". North Wales Chronicle. NWN Media Ltd. Retrieved 25 June 2017.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ "Ward population 2011". Retrieved 18 May 2015.
  9. ^ "Isle of Anglesey (Electoral Arrangements) Order 2012" (PDF). legislation.gov.uk. The National Archives. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  10. ^ "Area: Aberffraw (Parish)". Office for National Statistics. 30 January 2013. Retrieved 12 August 2015.
  11. ^ "Area: Aberffraw (Parish)". Office for National Statistics. 18 November 2004. Retrieved 12 August 2015.
  12. ^ The Mabinogion: Branwen the Daughter of Llyr, translated by Lady Charlotte Guest. Online at www.sacred-texts.com.

Further readingEdit

  • Davies, John. A History of Wales.

External linksEdit