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The 1841 census for Colwyn Bay

in the old counties of Denbigh and Caernarvon

which covers the old townships of:

Llysfaen, Penmaen, Eirias, Colwyn and Rhiw, Llwydcoed, Cilgwyn, Dinerth, and Mochdre.

and also new:



The 1841 Census for Wales was taken on the night of 6 June 1841. The following information was requested:

Name of street, place, road, etc.

House number or name

Name of each person that had spent the night in that household
Sex (indicated by which column the age is recorded in)
Profession or occupation
Where born**

*The ages of people over 15 years old were usually rounded down to the nearest 5 years. Therefore, someone who was actually 24 years would have their age listed as 20, and someone who was actually 27 years old would have their age listed as 25.

**The "Where Born" column only asked two questions - 1) whether born in same county, and 2) whether born in Scotland, Ireland, or Foreign Parts. Possible answers and abbreviations to question #1 include: Yes (Y), No, (N), or Not Known (NK). For question #2, the following abbreviations were used: Scotland (S), Ireland (I), and Foreign Parts (F).

Enumeration forms were distributed to all households a couple of days before census night and the complete forms were collected the next day. All responses were to reflect the individual's status as of 6 June 1841 for all individuals who had spent the night in the house. People who were traveling or living abroad were enumerated at the location where they spent the night on census night. All of the details from the individual forms were later sorted and copied into enumerators' books, which are the records we can view images of today. The original householder's schedules from 1841 to 1901 were destroyed.

The clerks who compiled and reviewed the census data made a variety of marks on the returns. Unfortunately, many of these tally marks were written over personal information and some fields, such as ages, can be difficult to read as a result. More useful marks include a single slash between households within a building and a double slash separating households in separate buildings.

Before going to the search please read the following:

When carrying out a search of the 1841 census it will be evident that there are many errors in the spelling of peoples Christian names. I have not changed any of these as they are `as written` by the census enumerator at the time. Be aware also that some surname spellings may be unusual. As the census forms were written in pencil there has been some degree of fading and it sometimes becomes difficult to decipher some names, although having said that, the Llandrillo yn Rhos census is excellent compared to many many other districts.

Some properties, mainly farms have outbuildings which are occupied by people and these are generally described as `in yard` or `do yard.

The enumerators routes will be as mystifying to you as they are to me. The reason for this is that in any particular township/hamlet/village, three or four or more people would call to carry out the collection of the sheets and as most people were illiterate in those days those collectors would complete the forms in most cases and then these would be passed on to the enumerators for processing and probably in no particular order. A good example of this is that in the township of Eirias on page 1 we see the Glyn Farm which is situated on the left side of the Nant y Glyn Valley and on the next page we see Rhos Fynach which is situated on the sea front at Rhos Point, Rhos on Sea, a good mile apart!!

Bear in mind when searching that the parish of Llandrillo yn Rhos in 1841 was made up mainly of Farms, Churches, Inns, solitary dwellings, and only a few small street developements within the heart of a township and little else other than agricultural land.

Abbreviations commonly used by the census enumerators are as follows:

ag lab = agricultural labourer, f s = female servant, m s = male servant, Ind = of independent means, app = apprentice, do = ditto or `the same as`, 1u = one building unoccupied.

The township of `Colwyn` is actually the present day Old Colwyn and the townships of `Rhiw` and `Eirias` are the modern day Colwyn Bay.

When one considers that Colwyn didn`t really take off as a major inhabited area until mid to late Victorian times it`s small wonder that the great majority of the dwellings listed in this census are farms and most of the inhabitants are involved in farming. Some of the farm names are instantly recognisable as being areas of the present day Colwyn Bay and area. Tan Llan, Parkia (as it was then spelt) Minydon, Glanydon, Lletyr Dryw, Penmaen, Maescadwgan, and so many others.

Search the Llandrillo yn Rhos 1841 census

Eirias Penmaen Llysfaen Colwyn Rhiw

Llwydcoed Cilgwyn Mochdre Dinerth


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