The Rectory of Llangattock is mentioned in Pope Nicholas’ Taxation compiled in 1288 with a living at that time valued at £16. There is evidence that the Village Farm may have been the original Rectory house. The Old Rectory became the new Rectory at the end of the 16th Century and served as the parsonage until 1950.
Before the disestablishment of the Church of Wales in 1920, Llangattock was a wealthy living with the Rector employing 10 servants. The Rectory was enlarged in 1852 when the imposing porch was added by Rev George Howell, and again in 1884-5, when the sum of £806 12s 5d was expended for ‘alterations, repairs and enlargements’ by the Rev T J Bowen. At this time the north wing was added. In 1947 the Rector Canon R. M. Cole-Hamilton was appointed Archdeacon of Brecon. He resigned the living of Llangattock, which he had held since 1913. Incumbents appointed to their livings before disestablishment were allowed to keep their stipends but the new Rector Rev Clifford Bowen received a reduced income from the living and it was decided to sell the Rectory and build a new one commensurate with this income. The Rectory was sold to Major Steven Taylor for the sum of £3,800. The new Rectory was formerly opened on 29th April 1950 by Lady Parker.
The Old Rectory became a hotel in 1963, owned by the partners Mr and Mrs A Newman and Mr and Mrs A Groves. At that time the hotel had only five bedrooms.
There was also a ‘pink lounge’ containing a magnificent carved-wood bar. This bar was originally a bookcase belonging to the well-known Herbert family. It has now been moved to our entrance lounge where it serves as a very grand reception desk.
It stands over 9 feet high and twelve feet wide, a solid hunk of ornate, all-over carving of lions heads, bunches of grapes and leaves. An old Welsh proverb, surmounting this truly magnificent piece, has been transcribed by the Aberystwyth Reference Library to read:
‘A clean conscience keeps the owner secure.’
Thought to be of foreign origin, the wood is probably mahogany and walnut but has no clue as to its date. Mr Newman found a label attached to it which indicated that it came to this country by ship. It was addressed to John Arthur Herbert, Llanarth Court.