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Haroldston Mansion

Also known as, or recorded in historical documents as;
The Stewards Tower

In the community of Merlin's Bridge.
In the historic county of Pembrokeshire.
Modern authority of Pembrokeshire.
Preserved county of Dyfed.

OS Map Grid Reference: SM95771452
Latitude 51.79191° Longitude -4.96314°

Haroldston Mansion has been described as a probable Fortified Manor House.

There are masonry ruins/remnants remains.

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law.


Situated one mile south of the town centre of Haverfordwest, Haroldstone House was once one of the grandest houses in the county of Pembrokeshire. The earliest part of the house is a first floor medieval hall with vaulted undercroft, c.15m by 7m, built by the Harold family of Haverfordwest around the late thirteenth century. Between the mid-fifteenth century until the later seventeenth century, Haroldston became the home of one of the most powerful and influential families in Pembrokeshire, the Perrots. During this period, the house was modernised and enlarged to the plan we see today. Two new halls were constructed to the west of the original hall and a service/kitchen range built to the north-east, together with a walled courtyard containing a well to the north. To the east of the original hall a second larger walled courtyard separated the main quarters from the original gatehouse situated adjacent to the south-east corner of the courtyard. This is the best preserved building on site and is a c 5m square three storey structure with a semi detached spiral staircase which also housed a garderobe. During the seventeenth century the ground floor entrance was filled in to form a vault and the function changed to that of a self contained tower house, later known as the Stewards Tower. Following this conversion a range of buildings were also added directly to the east, over the original gatehouse approach. A rectangular structure in the south east corner of the site, adjacent to Clay Lane, is likely to be the remains of the new gatehouse. From the eighteenth century, under the ownership of the Pakington family, the house was leased out and fell into neglect; it was largely ruinous by the nineteenth century although the Stewards Tower continued to be occupied until the later part of that century. (Coflein)

The ruins of the 13th Century mansion of Haroldston, said to be the birthplace of Sir John Perrot (of Carew castle), illegitimate son of Henry VIII. The site is a complex of ruined late medieval and Tudor buildings and formal garden areas. The dominant building element is an L-shaped ruinous tower. The site has,in recent years, been overgrown and root disturbance has contributed to the continuing decay of the buildings and disturbance of the formal gardens. (Dyfed Archaeological Trust Historic Environment Record)

The monument consists of the remains of a house. Haroldston consists of a ruinous complex of late medieval and Tudor buildings, some with stone vaulted undercrofts. Most prominent is the "Steward’s Tower", a small tower house either of medieval date or a Tudor banqueting house. Surrounding the buildings are the remains of walled gardens, terraces and earthworks, and water features belonging to a very extensive and well preserved series of formal gardens, unaltered since the 17th century. (Scheduling Report)

Described by Hull as 'fortified residence with Tower House'. No other authority describes this house as fortified but, as a high status house, may have had some symbolic martial features.
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Sources of information, references and further reading
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This record last updated 14/10/2016 23:58:23