Paxton's Tower Lodge

Llanarthney, Carmarthenshire


This is an early 19th-century Welsh cottage, not far from the Gower peninsula, built for the caretaker of Paxton's Tower, which stands on the hill behind. 

  • Dogs AllowedDogs Allowed
  • CotCot
  • Mobile signalMobile signal
  • Fire or StoveFire or Stove
  • Open SpaceOpen Space
  • Parking AvailableParking Available
  • BathBath
  • DishwasherDishwasher
  • MicrowaveMicrowave

Beds 1 Double, 1 Triple room

4 nights
£740 equivalent to £37.00 per person, per night

Surveying an immense expanse of country

We acquired this building as part of a joint scheme with the National Trust to preserve Paxton’s Tower and its surroundings. It is an early 19th-century cottage of well above average quality, built for the Tower’s caretaker, looking over an immense expanse of country. It is difficult to imagine a finer view than from its south-facing slope. If, however, you walk a hundred yards or so up the small green hill behind, to the foot of the Tower, there, in the opposite direction, is the finer view. Surely one of the best in Britain, a prospect extensive and rich, it embraces the whole vale of the Tywi, whose green windings your eye can follow for 30 miles or more.

Paxton’s Tower, which attracts its share of summertime visitors, was built in about 1811, as a memorial to Nelson but also as an eye-catcher for Middleton Hall. The hall is long since demolished, but its footprint is now preserved at the heart of the National Botanic Gardens of Wales. Our cottage has an interesting arrangement inside, partly due to remodelling by us, and a handsome, very low-beamed attic.

An ideal base to explore South Wales

There is much to do within a day trip from the cottage. Walking in the Black Mountains or on the Gower, surfing at Rhossili, the Gothic fantasy of Burges’s Castell Coch – all are within easy reach. But you may find it just as pleasant to stay put, and reacquaint yourselves with the pleasure of reading, jigsaws and conversation beside an open fire within solid old walls, whatever the weather outside.


Floor Plans


5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

Independent feedback based on 36 verified reviews.

Filter reviews
Map & local info

Paxton's Tower Lodge stands in a picturesque location close to Paxton’s Tower on the hill behind. Climb to the top of the hill to look out over the stunning views of the Vale of Tywi. Aberglasney Garden in the Tywi valley is claimed to be one of the finest in Wales.

The National Botanic Garden of Wales, which covers a large expanse of the Carmarthenshire countryside, is within easy reach of the cottage by car for a visit. 

Hawk Adventures, also close to Llanarthney, is the place to visit for those seeking a richly varied choice of outdoor challenges and activities. Llanarthney is near to the Brecon Beacons National Park, which is dominated by the Black Mountains, a great place to explore.

Visit the home of the great Welsh poet, the Dylan Thomas Boathouse at Laugharne on the estuary of the River Taf, just over half an hour from Llanarthney. Follow in the steps of the poet on the Dylan Thomas Walk around this charming town with its ancient castle ruins. 

For more information on things to do during your stay at Paxton's Tower Lodge, please see our Pinterest page. Discover local walks for dogs with our friends at, the dog walks community.

Please Note: The Landmark Trust does not take any responsibility and makes no warranties, representations or undertakings about the content of any website accessed by hypertext link. Links should not be taken as an endorsement of any kind. The Landmark Trust has no control over the availability of the linked pages.

Clear directions
Essential info
What you need to know about this building
  • Yes. You are welcome to bring up to two dogs. A charge of £20 per stay is made for each dog.

    Please contact booking enquiries if you have an assistance dog, for which there is no charge.
  • From the main road.
  • Ffairfach – 6 miles.
  • There is one parking space beside the property. 
  • There is oil fired central heating and an open fire.
  • Logs may be purchased and delivered under a private arrangement. Further details will be provided with your booking confirmation.
  • To check up-to-date mobile network coverage in the area, visit Due to the location and structure of many of our buildings, signal strength may differ to those indicated.
  • The kitchen is fully equipped with all plates, cutlery, fridge etc. There is an electric cooker, microwave and a dishwasher.
  • There is one bathroom with a bath.
  • The stairs are not particularly steep.
  • Yes, there are low beams in the triple bedded room.
  • There is an enclosed garden. There is a public footpath which runs up to Paxton’s Tower – this passes to one side of the lodge.
Booking and Payment
  • If the weather is bad, please contact our booking office who will be able to tell you whether the Landmark is accessible. If the housekeeper can safely get to the building to prepare it then we consider that it is open and available for guests. However if we cannot undertake a changeover then we will do our utmost to transfer your stay to another Landmark, depending on what we have available. It may not be of a similar size or in the same part of the country as your original booking. If the building is accessible but the customer cannot travel due to poor weather in his/her local area then please be aware that Landmark will not provide a refund. However the customer may be able to claim on his/her own travel insurance. We recommend that all guests take out travel insurance when they first secure a booking.
  • We accept Maestro (if issued in the UK), Visa, MasterCard, direct transfer and sterling cheques drawn on a UK bank. Cheques should be made payable to the Landmark Trust except for Lundy stays and boat/helicopter tickets which should be payable to The Lundy Company Ltd. All payments must be in sterling.
  • The key arrangements will be included in the Further Infomation document which will be sent to you prior to your stay.
  • If your stay starts more than two months from the date you make the booking, you are required to pay a deposit of one third of the cost of your stay (or £100 per booking, if greater) at the time of booking. Camping on Lundy and The Bunk House at Llwyn Celyn must be paid for in full at the time of booking.
  • If you wish to cancel or change your booking, please contact our Booking Office on 01628 825925
  • At the moment we only accept payment in sterling.
  • Our housekeeper will leave the key in a suitable place, the details of which will be sent to you prior to your stay.
  • It depends. Some of our most popular Landmarks are booked up a long time in advance, but many can be booked at short notice. We will always have Landmarks free for the coming weekend so it’s always worth checking our availability list.
  • No, Landmarks are available to be booked for anyone.
  • No, all the information you need can be found on our website, although we’d like you to buy one anyway as it will be a pleasure to own!
Staying at a Landmark
  • Some of our Landmarks are suitable for people with disabilities or limited mobility. However, many Landmarks have steep or narrow staircases, uneven floors and thresholds, changes of level, low ceilings or beams, as well as indistinct colours on steps and in corridors. We recommend that you call Booking Enquiries on 01628 825925 if you would like to find out the suitability of a particular Landmark for anyone with a specific disability.  Further information on access when visiting Lundy can also be found here.
  • Yes, Landmarks are only available as self-catering accommodation. We do not offer bed and breakfast.
  • Landmark does not provide catering, but we can recommend Greycoat Lumleys who can arrange for expert and well-trained staff to cater for one evening or for your entire holiday. Their cooks and chefs are able to work with you to meet your specific requirements
  • You may bring up to two dogs to properties where dogs are allowed (please see specific property details for exemptions however dogs are not permitted on Lundy except assistance dogs). They must be kept off the furniture and under proper control. A charge of £20 per stay is made for each dog. Please contact booking enquiries if a registered assistance dog is supporting one of the guests, for which there is no charge.
  • Apart from two dogs (see above) no other pets are permitted.
  • Arrival is from 4pm and departure is by 10am.
  • We do not carry insurance for breakages. However we appreciate that accidents do sometimes happen. If you have a breakage during your stay, please let the housekeeper know and if appropriate we reserve the right to invoice you accordingly.
  • Yes, most of our Landmarks are perfect for children, with gardens to play in and secret places to discover. Our furniture is surprisingly robust and we positively encourage families to stay. However, some of our buildings may not be suitable for small children; for example, some of them have steep or uneven spiral staircases. We recommend that you call the Booking Enquiries team if you would like to find out the suitability of any of our Landmarks for young children.
  • Unfortunately, most of our Landmarks are not licensed for weddings. However, you may get married on Lundy.
  • All our larger Landmarks are perfect for gatherings of family or friends. You may invite an additional two guests to visit you during your stay, however they must not stay overnight. This is very important because our fire regulations specifically note the maximum number of people in any one building. In addition our properties are prepared, furnished and equipped for the number of people specified and greater numbers cause damage and excessive wear and tear to vulnerable buildings. Should this condition be ignored we shall make a retrospective charge per person per day (whether or not they stay overnight) for each guest over the permitted limit, the charge being pro-rated on the total cost of your booking.
  • We deliberately do not provide televisions and find that most people appreciate this.
  • One of the challenges of restoring unloved buildings is gaining access to them. We frequently have to negotiate rights with our neighbours and share tracks with them. In many cases tracks do not belong to us and we have no right to maintain them. Wherever possible we work with our neighbours to provide you with a good quality surface, but where this is a problem then you will be warned at the time of booking.
  • Yes, we have standard electricity sockets for UK appliances. If you are coming from outside the UK, you will need to bring your own adaptor plug(s). If you are visiting one of our European properties we have standard European electricity sockets. If you are visiting from the UK, you will need to bring your own adapter plug (s).
  • Landmark’s electrical systems have not been designed to provide continuous power from one socket over several hours.  If an ordinary socket is used to charge an electric vehicle, there is significant risk of an electrical fire and consequent danger to life.  Therefore, we are unable to allow electric vehicle charging from most of our Landmarks at present.

    We are working to provide Type 2 Electric Vehicle charge points at our properties where there is private parking.  Where this is available, please request this facility when booking the property to ensure the outlet is enabled on your arrival.  There is a small charge to cover the cost of electricity provided.  Please book this facility in advance.
  • No, we do not allow smoking in any Landmark.
  • Sometimes our kitchens and bathrooms have to be imaginatively fitted into the available space in buildings where before there were none, but they are all planned and equipped to a high and modern standard.
  • Yes, Landmarks are fully equipped with sheets and towels. All the beds are fully made up for your arrival. Except for the Llwyn Celyn Bunkhouse.
  • Yes, our kitchens are well equipped with cookers and fridges. There are freezers and dishwashers (in larger buildings) and, where space allows, microwaves as well as a wide and standard range of utensils. A full equipment list is available at time of booking.
  • Logs are provided at many of our Landmarks for an additional cost.
  • Mobile coverage varies. Some Landmarks have an excellent signal, but others have none at all. If you are concerned, you can check with the housekeeper before your arrival.
  • No. At the moment, we have decided not to implement Wi-Fi in our buildings following a consultation with our customers. Many said that they would find it useful, but many also felt that it would somehow damage the experience of staying in a Landmark. As the responses were so split, and as we have so many other initiatives requiring funding, we have decided to put this on hold for the time being.
    Except at Llwyn Celyn Bunk House where a password is available in the property when you arrive.
  • A welcome tray with tea and sugar awaits your arrival and you will find a pint of milk in the fridge. We also provide toilet rolls and a bar of soap per basin, but no other toiletries. Hairdryers are provided.

A good example of the type of cottages being built in West Wales

In the middle of the 18th century the rural population began to increase quite rapidly. At the same time a new approach to the housing of this population began to take tangible shape. The result was the kind of cottage of which Paxton's Tower Lodge is a very good example, whose brothers and sisters were built in great numbers in the later 18th century, and throughout the 19th century, in the counties of West Wales.

The change was not absolute, of course, and in the poorer and more remote areas of Carmarthenshire, for example, the older vernacular tradition continued well into the 19th century. Smallholders building a house and byre for themselves would still use the thatch, wattle chimneys and rounded quoins which had been characteristic of the area for centuries. But closer to the industrial centres and on the estates of improving landlords, especially those who had undergone an education in Classical architecture, a more progressive attitude towards cottage building prevailed.

In this change we can see the result of two rather different forces. The first of these was the natural and eventual effect of improvements in the planning of houses for the gentry two centuries earlier, when symmetrical designs with end chimneys and central doorways, and evenly-spaced windows, became popular, and these had gradually worked their way down through society. The second force was that of the Industrial Revolution, seen in new materials such as finely-worked slates, and the use of iron bolts rather than oak pegs in the construction of roofs. Sawn slates and iron bolts are both found at Tower Hill Lodge, which was built in the first half of the 19th century, and is not unlike the lower half of an urban house, transported and given some saving rural touches.

The comparative modernity and generous proportions of these buildings also reflects a conscious desire for more permanent structures, for greater security and comfort. This is born out by the fact that there survive almost none of the traditional peasant dwellings, whereas the countryside is heavily populated with the square, solid, stuccoed farmhouses and cottages of the 19th century, still agreeable to live in a century or more later. The continued use of stucco, with the glazing bars found in the windows of Tower Hill Lodge, is particularly characteristic of West Wales where late 18th-century fashions lasted well into the following century, until they almost constituted a revival.

It seems reasonably certain that the main purpose for building the Lodge was to house a caretaker for Paxton's Tower. This could have been done by Sir William Paxton who built the tower; or by his successor at Middleton Hall, Edwin Adams, whom we know to have employed 70 to 80 carpenters in 1841, and to have built a large number of new houses on the estate. It probably went with a small tenant farm or smallholding, but continued to house the custodian as well, as is shown by the following letter from Dorothy Stroud to Country Life attention to Paxton's Tower in 1954 on the bicentenary of the birth of its architect, S. P. Cockerell. She describes the approach to it thus:

'After climbing a steep lane the visitor stops just short of a farmhouse by a notice which reads "To Trespass 3d". Having settled this little matter at the farm, or by perching coins on the gate-post, a further climb of a hundred yards or so brings him to the tower and the magnificent views by which it truly earns its original title (The Prospect House).'

A short history of Paxton's Tower Lodge

Read the full history album for Paxton's Tower Lodge

Download the children's Explorer pack for Paxton's Tower Lodge


Helping to preserve Paxton's Tower and its surroundings

The Landmark Trust bought Paxton's Tower Lodge in 1966 as part of a scheme with the National Trust to preserve Paxton's Tower and its surroundings. It was then in a very dilapidated state, with a corrugated-iron lean-to against one end and a tatty porch. These were taken down, so that only the original structure was left.

This was probably much as it had always been, at least in the 20th century, with two rooms on the ground floor (kitchen/living room and parlour, but in reverse order to the present arrangement), divided by a central passage with board partitions. Above was the single loft bedroom, reached by a ladder-like stair and lit by one small window which, as can be seen on the plan, we enlarged. The wing running out behind was added by Landmark to increase accommodation and fit in the necessary services.

The walls of the cottage are built of rubble masonry with a lot of clay, which is easily washed away in bad weather. To prevent this happening, and in accordance with local tradition, the exterior has to be lime-washed. In spite of this the west gable still let in the wet, and a solution was only found in another local practice, that of slate-hanging which, although it had not actually been done on the Lodge before, we felt to be in sympathy with it.

The fireplace also presented problems. This originally had a wide opening under an oak lintel with an oven tucked in one side, as one would expect to find in an old cottage or farmhouse. Later a range had been inserted, and the intention was to remove this and have once again a large open fire. Unfortunately this turned out to smoke so badly that it could not be left; instead the small fireplace there now was fitted, and this has proved more successful. The slate flagstones making up the hearth are also new, but like much else in the house, are similar to what might originally have been there.

The new floorboards in the sitting room are of Cilgerran oak, replacing the tiles that were there before.

The most endearing characteristic of Paxton's Tower Lodge is its straightforwardness, its Industrial Revolution lack of fuss; and it is this quality that we have tried to honour in the methods and materials used for its repair.

Availability & booking

Select a changeover day to start your booking...

What's a changeover day? and Why can't I select other dates?Explain MoreQuestion

A changeover day is a particular day of the week when holidays start and end at our properties. These tend to be on a Friday or a Monday but can sometimes vary. All stays run from one changeover day until another changeover day.