Welcome to the home of 19th century astrophotography — a tribute to Swansea’s pioneering past at new housing development

Local housebuilder, Barratt Developments South Wales, has today (21st February) announced the name of its new Penllergaer development in Swansea — Pentref Llewelyn.

The site, coming in Spring 2023, has been named after pioneering Welsh photographer, John Dillwyn Llewelyn and his daughter, Thereza Dillwyn Llewelyn — an astronomer and scientific photographer, best known for taking one of the world’s first photographs of the moon in 1857.

The ground-breaking photograph was taken from an observatory which John gifted Thereza on her sixteenth birthday — a building located just a stone’s throw from Pentref Llewelyn, which will bring [166] 2-, 3- and 4-bedroom properties to the local area.

It’s hoped that the housing development’s name will help to commemorate the impact of the Dillwyn Llewelyns — reminding residents and visitors alike of the region’s connection to pioneering astrophotography.

The father and daughter duo were early adopters of photography and made significant contributions to the field. In 1856, John invented the Oxymel process — meaning negatives could be prepared in advance for the very first time and exposed in the camera at a later stage.

This allowed photography to become a portable and more accessible activity, with photographers able to quickly take pictures that would have previously required longer amounts of time and a darkroom tent.

John Dillwyn Llywelyn was also a gifted amateur scientist and member of the Royal Institution of South Wales — formed to expand the scientific community in Swansea and credited with opening the first-ever museum in Wales.

Richard Lawson, Sales Director for Barratt Developments South Wales, said: “Naming the development after the Llewelyn family felt like a fitting tribute to honour their scientific achievements — reminding residents of the area’s innovative past.

“Having successfully built our Chapel Fields development in nearby Loughor, we’re looking forward to providing even more forever homes slightly further west in Penllergaer. And who knows? The development’s green open spaces may even inspire a new generation of budding astronomers or photographers — just like Thereza and John Dillwyn Llewelyn.

“Just a short drive from the Gower peninsula, Pentref Llewelyn is in close proximity to a selection of scenic walks and beautiful coastal views — all whilst maintaining excellent links via the M4 to Swansea and Cardiff.”

The development has also been designed with energy efficiency and sustainability at its core — with homes designed to be up to 58% more energy-efficient than a Victorian property with modern day improvements, potentially saving new residents up to £2,600 per year on bills.

To find out more about Pentref Llewelyn, please visit: https://www.barratthomes.co.uk/new-homes/dev001007-pentref-llewelyn,-penllergaer/