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Our History

Llanerch has a rich and captivating story to tell. 

  • 1800-1970


Llanerch, derived from the Welsh language, carries the meaning of "clearing or clear area." This name reflects the origins of the property, which has a rich history dating back to its establishment in the 1800s. Initially, Llanerch encompassed a 22-acre expanse and featured a charming three-bedroom farmhouse as its centerpiece. Functioning as a working farm, it engaged in diverse agricultural practices until the year 1970. The land witnessed generations of farming activities, nurturing a connection to the local landscape and contributing to the region's agricultural heritage.

  • 1970 - 1985

1970 - 1985

In the 1970s, Peter and Diane made the decision to purchase Llanerch farm, recognizing it as an ideal setting to raise their family. At the time, they owned five pharmacies in the local area, and with their daughters' shared love for horses, the vast expanse of 22 acres offered abundant space for the horses to graze and roam freely. The farm provided a picturesque and nurturing environment for their family.

In the picture attached, Peter and Diane can be seen alongside Gwyn Davies during the opening of the hotel in 2019. Their proud presence showcases their dedication and commitment to the development and success of Llanerch over the years. It serves as a testament to their journey from farm owners to visionary entrepreneurs, creating a remarkable destination that combines hospitality, vineyards, and memorable experiences for their guests.

  • 1986-1988


In the 1980s, after selling their pharmacies and with their daughters grown up and moved out, Peter and Diane found themselves with empty bedrooms and a vast expanse of 22 acres of land. It was during this period that Diane came across an article in The Guardian newspaper discussing British vineyards, which sparked an intriguing idea for her retirement project. Inspired by the article, Diane decided to delve into the world of winemaking.

Between 1980 and 1986, Diane embarked on a transformative journey, venturing to various wine-producing regions in France to gain the necessary knowledge and expertise to establish their own vineyard at Llanerch. In 1986, the first vines were planted, starting with the "Kernling" grape variety. While Peter initially suggested covering a small 2-acre plot with vines, Diane's determination and enthusiasm led her to personally plant over 2000 vines, predominantly comprising French and German varieties such as Triomphe, Bachus, Richenstiner, and Huxelrebe.

Diane's hands-on approach and dedication to creating a thriving vineyard set the stage for Llanerch's wine production journey. Her tireless efforts during those early years laid the foundation for the subsequent success and growth of Llanerch as a renowned destination for wine enthusiasts and hospitality seekers.

  • 1989-2005


In 1989, as Peter and Diane prepared to produce their first bottle of wine for their eldest daughter's wedding, they chose to name the wine "Cariad," which means "love/to be loved" in Welsh. The intention was to commemorate the joyous occasion and the name Cariad Wines became synonymous with their product. Peter and Diane dedicated themselves to promoting and selling the wine.

In 1999, Three Choirs vineyard in Gloucestershire approached Peter and Diane with an enticing proposition. After conducting blind tastings and trials, Peter and Diane made the decision to move the wine production off-site to the Three Choirs winery. This collaboration allowed them to expand their distribution and establish their wines in reputable stores like Howells in Cardiff during the 2000s.

Peter and Diane successfully operated Llanerch Vineyard until 2005, when they made the decision to sell the property. Listed for £2.1 million, the sale included a six-bedroom farmhouse, a renowned 6.5-acre vineyard producing between 12,000 and 35,000 bottles of wine annually, converted farm buildings dating back to the 19th century that provided self-catering accommodations, a visitor center with a tasting room and coffee shop, as well as various amenities like landscaped gardens, picnic areas, woodland walks, carp lakes, and an indoor heated swimming pool. The property encompassed a total of 20 acres, offering diverse opportunities for leisure and agricultural activities.

  • 2005-2009


Between 2005 and 2008, Peter and Diane made the decision to sell Llanerch, marking its first change in ownership. It was acquired by an interim owner during that period. However, the unfortunate timing coincided with the economic crash, which had severe consequences. The owner eventually filed for bankruptcy, leading to Llanerch falling into the hands of receivers.

Tragically, during this tumultuous period, the vineyard suffered neglect and was left in a state of disrepair. Despite generating significant interest, no firm investors emerged, exacerbating the challenges faced. Regrettably, a number of the vines deteriorated beyond the point of repair, compounding the difficulties faced by Llanerch during that time.

  • 2010-2011


In 2010, while searching for land near Cardiff with good road access to establish an extreme sports park in Wales, Ryan and his family came across Llanerch by chance. After viewing the property, they went for lunch, where Ryan's father, Gwyn, discussed the potential of hosting weddings and events on the site. Ryan shared his experiences working on vineyards in Australia and New Zealand, which were renowned tourist attractions featuring restaurants, hotels, and tours.

Over a few bottles of wine, they recognized the immense business potential this presented. In October 2010, Llanerch was acquired, and an extensive refurbishment took place before its grand reopening to the public on June 13th, 2011. This marked the beginning of a new chapter in Llanerch's history, where it evolved from a search for an extreme sports park into a thriving destination blending vineyards, hospitality, and remarkable experiences.


Despite facing initial challenges in marketing Llanerch as a public destination, the efforts eventually paid off as it gained recognition as a remarkable restaurant and wedding venue. However, with only 11 bedrooms available, Llanerch encountered difficulties in expanding its operations. Consequently, a decision was made to construct a hotel extension comprising 26 additional bedrooms. After careful planning and execution, this much-awaited expansion became accessible to the public in July 2019, marking a significant milestone in Llanerch's growth and ability to accommodate more guests.

  • 2020-2021


Shortly after the inauguration of the new hotel, the world was engulfed in the COVID-19 pandemic, which led to the temporary closure of Llanerch along with many other businesses. However, the resourceful Llanerch team swiftly adapted to the challenging circumstances. Recognising the overwhelming demand and strain on supermarkets, they leveraged their wholesale suppliers to establish the "Llanerch Farm Shop." By procuring products in bulk, the team divided them and arranged direct shipments to customers' doorsteps. In addition to essential items, they also offered a selection of wine, restaurant-quality meals, and luxury goods, catering to the evolving needs of the community.

When restrictions were partially lifted during the summer of 2020, Llanerch utilised its wedding marquee to transform it into an open-sided restaurant, allowing ample space for social distancing measures. With the main hotel restaurant closed and the anticipation of a second lockdown, Ryan seized the opportunity to undertake a restaurant extension. The construction of the extension was promptly completed, preparing Llanerch to welcome guests back to a larger and improved dining space when normalcy returned in May 2021.


Llanerch proudly holds the esteemed distinction of being recognised as the AA Best Hotel in Wales, a testament to its commitment to excellence. Its restaurant has been awarded two AA Rosettes, highlighting the exceptional quality and service provided to guests. This accolade acknowledges Llanerch's dedication to delivering a remarkable experience, ensuring that visitors are met with outstanding hospitality and a superior level of service throughout their stay.

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