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The Owain Glyndwr rebellion, the Tudurs of Anglesey and the daring capture of Conwy Castle

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The Glyndwr rebellion and Conwy Castle

The Anglo Norman barons were not the only ones capable of trickery and betrayal. The Welsh were not averse to a bit of trickery and I am afraid to say ....a bit of betrayal.

In 1401 Good Friday fell on April 1st and the Tudur brothers of Anglesey, cousins and supporters of Conwy CastleOwain Glyndwr, had hatched a plot to take advantage of this holy day.

Rhys and Gwilym ap Tudur ap Goronwy and a company of just 40 men tricked their way into the walled town of Conwy. (Conwy and its castle were part of the iron ring of fortresses built by King Edward I in the 13th century in an effort to subdue the Welsh). Some say they were disguised as work men or simply mingled with the country folk who would enter the town to trade at market. Being such an important religious day they knew the garrison would be at prayer in the parish church of St Mary's. They quickly overcame the remaining guards and captured the castle. Once in control they demonstrated that with just a few dozen men the magnificent castle, the pinnacle of medieval military architecture, the "stealth bomber" of its day, could be easily defended against massive forces.

Henry Percy (Henry Hotspur) the Justice of Chester and north Wales and a powerful Lord in the service of the English King Henry IV was helpless and recognised that he would have to agree terms with the rebels.

But they held out for three long months before finally surrendering Conwy castle on terms favourable to the Tudurs. Unfortunately the terms, which included full pardons to the Tudurs, were not favourable to all the company of Glyndwrs' rebels, and eight of the rebel soldiers were executed by the English as part of the deal.

Betrayal.....it seems it was a Rich v Poor thing, not an English v Welsh thing.... nothing changes!

 

Go to Page 4
Summary of the Glyndwr Rebellion >

 

Caernarfon Castle and walled town
Conwy Castle and walled town
Ruthin Old Court House
Criccieth Castle
Dolwyddelan Castle
Harlech Castle
Cardiff Castle Keep

Heritage map showing Owain Glyndwr trail .
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For a holiday in Wales on the Owain Glyndwr trail choose from this list of accommodation providers in Llangollen, Ruthin and North East Wales. Please note the properties listed are not specifically offering Heritage holidays.
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