Original features

April 23, 2009

Ty Crawshay, or the House of Crawshay, was built in the early 19th century for one of Wales' leading industrial families. Today it stands at the heart of the University of Glamorgan's Treforest campus.

After the Crawshays, the house was owned by a prominent local solicitor, before being bought by the South Wales and Monmouthshire School of Mines in 1913. There is still a large well under the floor in one of the rooms, where students once learnt how to pump water from the ground.

The school went on to become a polytechnic, and then the University of Glamorgan in 1992.

Although a hall of residence and a number of other buildings have sprouted up around it, Ty Crawshay is a listed late-Georgian house, so its exterior remains largely unchanged.

When it was recently transformed into a postgraduate centre incorporating a mock courtroom for law students, extensive research ensured that the restoration respected the original design.

Internal walls were replastered using traditional lime putty and lime mortar with horse hair, cast-iron radiators were installed to match the surviving ones, and the box-frame sash windows were also retained or repaired, albeit with weatherproof seals to prevent draughts.

Send suggestions for this architectural series to: matthew.reisz@tsleducation.com.

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