Interior Designer and television personality Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen has joined forces with Connect to Purpose, a charity providing retreats for disadvantaged families, to restore one of Wales’ oldest homes near Cowbridge in the Vale of Glamorgan.
One of the finest and most complete early gentry houses in the Vale of Glamorgan, Plas Llanmihangel is currently on the market for £1.3 million. Rather than see it go into private occupancy, Connect to Purpose aims to purchase and restore the Grade 1 listed fortified manor house, and turn it into a safe and tranquil retreat for disadvantaged young people and their families from across South Wales.
Help and support offered to families will include personal development coaching, health and wellbeing therapies, education and creative arts (including film-making, art, music and photography), as well as opportunities to commune with nature in the surrounding countryside and play their part in the conservation of the manor.
The charity also intends to share the unique historic home with the wider community, by offering bed and breakfast, and holiday rental accommodation for public use; delivering wellbeing retreats and open days, and holding an annual medieval festival of arts.
Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, said: “I was lucky enough to fall in love with Plas Llanmihangel over a decade ago, filming its fairytale gothic glory for the BBC series ‘Hidden Houses of Wales’. What struck me then, and gives me so much pleasure now, is the fact that this building is such a powerful time capsule, with the ability to take visitors back to so many different, extremely important, moments that defined the history of Wales and indeed the history of the UK. With this in mind I am compelled to support this extraordinarily exciting initiative to revivify one of my favourite Welsh buildings and use it to help young people learn the skills they need to create the kind of life for themselves that they desire.”
Trustee of Connect to Purpose, Georgina Saralis, said: “Our aim is to save and sympathetically restore this spectacular property and create a comfortable family home to be shared with the local community and visitors alike. Through a programme of education, therapy, creative arts and coaching, we will offer disadvantaged young people and their families the support, time and space needed to find a way through their difficulties.”
You can help…
To help purchase Plas Llanmihangel, the charity has launched a crowdfunding page.
Find out more…
Read more in the summer issue of Vale Life. There’ll be an interview with Laurence and Jennifer will update readers about the project.