1891: Landlord Tyranny in Wales

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Sir Edward Watkin, M.P., remarks the London Daily News, as a Welsh landlord, is seeking to undo mischief which his predecessors wrought. Publicity was given a few years ago to a painful case near Beddgelert, where a small company of Welsh Methodists found that the lease on their little chapel and chapel house had expired, and that they could only retain the buildings by surrendering part of the site and paying the sum of £400 sterling. After leaving the chapel for awhile they paid the sum and regained possession. Sir Edward Watkin, who has a chalet near Beddgelert, has now become the landlord, and he has restored the portion of the site that was lost, and given substantial aid. Writing to the Rev. T. Gwynedd Roberts to acknowledge a resolution of thanks, Sir Edward expresses himself in the following emphatic terms:- “My little contributions to the Bethania Chapel, especially the land, were not merely the proper donations of a landlord to good religious work, but were to some extent influenced by my indignation at the harsh and excessive terms inflicted upon the congregation by my predecessor in the possesion of the land. If the Church of England in Wales is to be disestablished, such cases as that of Bethania may well be quoted as showing the tyranny of a dominant sect – landowners all the same.”

Published by Cardiff Times, 5 September 1891