Conservation areas are distinct parts of the historic environment of Wrexham County Borough. We (the local planning authority) designate these areas for their special architectural or historic interest.

The special interest of a conservation area is expressed through a combination of characteristics. Examples of these characteristics include the:

  • pattern of settlement
  • organisation of space and buildings plots
  • network of routes
  • style and type of buildings, including their materials/detailing

Green infrastructure is also important and parks, gardens, hedges, trees and water features can all contribute to the character of a conservation area.

Designated conservation areas in Wrexham County Borough

There are currently 23 designated conservation areas within the County Borough. A map of each area is available, along with Character Assessment and Management Plans.

Bangor on Dee

Bangor on Dee is located approximately 5.5 miles south east of Wrexham and is set adjacent to the A525 Wrexham to Whitchurch Road.

The conservation area encompasses the heart of the village which sits within a natural hollow alongside the River Dee. The village has uninterrupted long distance views west to the Berwyn Mountains and to the east, the Bickerton Hills.

The Bangor on Dee Conservation Area was first designated in March 1971 and its boundary amended and reduced in November 1999. The Bangor on Dee Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in July 2010. The Bangor on Dee Conservation Area article 4(2) direction came into effect on September 3, 2010.

Bersham

Bersham Conservation Area is situated approximately 2.5 miles to the south west of Wrexham Town Centre and due north of the industrial settlement of Rhostyllen.

The conservation area is located within the wooded part of the upper reaches of the Clywedog Valley which runs from Minera to Wrexham. The influences of both the iron-works and the nearby Plas Power Estate are evident in the development of the village, the architectural styles and features which afford Bersham its unique character.

The Bersham Conservation Area was first designated in August 1975 and its boundary amended and extended in 2003. The Bersham Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in December 2009.

Cefn Mawr

Cefn Mawr, meaning great ridge in English, is situated near the south west boundary of Wrexham and Denbighshire. Cefn Mawr is situated between Ruabon and Llangollen, approximately 7 miles from Wrexham. The village is located on a steep- sided, sandstone outcrop almost 100 metres above the Dee Valley floor and marks the eastern gateway to the Vale of Llangollen.

The conservation area encompasses the historic core which has been formed on several tiers within the hillside, wrapped around a central quarry creating a unique and distinctive townscape. Its elevated position affords Cefn Mawr with magnificent views along the Vale of Llangollen towards the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, which was inscribed a UNESCO World Heritage Site in June 2009.

The Cefn Mawr conservation area was designated in November 2004. The Cefn Mawr Conservation article 4(2) direction came into effect in January 2006. The Cefn Mawr Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in September 2012.

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Chirk

Chirk is situated on the border between Wales and England approximately 9 miles south west of Wrexham town centre and 5 miles north of Oswestry. The village sits within a shallow valley sandwiched between the historic estates of Chirk Castle, which overlooks the village to the west, and Brynkinallt hidden to the east by a sloping ridge and dissected from the village by the modern A483 bypass.

The conservation area focuses on the historic core of the village which is set on a small outcrop above the Ceiriog River and overlooking the picturesque Ceiriog Valley. The conservation area boundary encompasses the original medieval settlement around the Church of St Mary and Church Street and extends westwards along Station Avenue and Castle Road to include the Chirk Aqueduct and Viaduct, now part of the inscribed Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal World Heritage Site.

The boundary of the conservation area also extends northwards to take in part of Holyhead Road which was altered as part of Thomas Telford’s historic A5 London to Holyhead trunk road.

Chirk Conservation Area was first designated in August 1975 and its boundary reviewed and extended in October 1997 and 2013/2014. The Chirk Conservation Area article 4(2) direction came into effect in July 2002. The Chirk Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in 2013/2014.

Erbistock

Erbistock is one of the many hamlets and villages which exist along the banks of the River Dee. At Erbistock the river flows through the last sections of dramatic steep sided valley before it meanders north across its low lying and gently undulating floodplain towards Chester. Erbistock is 2km to the west of the village of Overton and is reached down a network of narrow winding country lanes off the Overton to Wrexham Road.

The conservation area is centred on the area around St Hilary's Church which sits on the bank of the River Dee at the foot of a 45 metre high sandstone escarpment, set against a background of mature trees. The surrounding area is rural in character, dominated by pasture fields.

Erbistock Conservation Area was first designated in August 1975 and its boundary amended in April 2000. The Erbistock Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in May 2010.

Fairy Road (Wrexham)

The Fairy Road Conservation Area is situated approximately one mile to the south of Wrexham Town Centre and almost adjoins the Salisbury Park Conservation Area situated to the north. The Fairy Road area was laid out in the mid-19th Century as a distinctive and spacious residential suburb of the town. The special character of the area derives from the distinct Arts and Craft detailing present on many of the properties as well the overall high quality of buildings, their layout and positioning.

The Fairy Road Conservation Area was designated in August 1975 and its boundary amended in December 1997. The Fairy Road article 4(2) direction came into effect in May 1998. The Fairy Road Conservation Area Assessment was adopted in February 1999.

The Character Assessment and Management Plan document for this conservation area will be added once it has been updated in line with Welsh Language Standards and accessibility standards.

Gresford

Gresford Conservation Area encompasses the heart of the historic village which is approximately 4 miles north east of Wrexham of the B5445 old Wrexham to Chester road. The village has developed on a flat-lying headland area above a steep sided section of the River Alyn valley as it flows in a north easterly direction to join the River Dee.

The conservation area centres on the magnificent grade I listed Parish Church of All Saints which provides the village with its strong sense of place and identity. The village has grown around the church which the settlement pattern within the area remaining largely unchanged to present day.

The Gresford Conservation Area was first designated in August 1975 and its boundary amended in November 1999. The Gresford Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in September 2009.

Grosvenor Road (Wrexham)

Grosvenor Road Conservation Area is situated to the north west of the commercial town centre and incorporates Grosvenor Road, Grove Road and parts of Gerald Street, Regent Street, King Street, Grove Park Road, Rhosddu Road and part of the Yale College Campus.

The Grosvenor Road Conservation Area was first designated in September 1990 and its boundary amended in July 2007. The Grosvenor Road Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in April 2009. The Gerald Street article 4(2) direction came into effect July 2007.

Hanmer

Hanmer is located approximately 9 miles south-east of Wrexham, close to the English border, with main access to the village from the A539 Whitchurch to Overton Road. The village is located within the area known as Maelor Saesneg where the landscape is characterised by undulating mainly pastoral lowland farmland with well managed hedgerow trees and small woodlands interrupting the field pattern. The area has also been influenced by historic designed estates of which the Hanmer estate is perhaps the most prominent.

The conservation area encompasses the majority of the village, with St Chad’s Church located at the heart, elevated above the surrounding domestic properties and facing onto the tranquil and picturesque Hanmer Mere. The surrounding open landscape provides fine views out of the conservation area complementing its mere-side position and contributing to the strong sense of place.

The Hanmer Conservation Area was first designated in 1971 and its boundary amended in April 2000. The Hanmer Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in December 2011.

Hightown Barracks

Hightown Barracks Conservation Area focuses on the historic barracks site which dates back to the late 19th Century. The barracks is located to the west of Kingsmill Road on the southern outskirts of Wrexham Town Centre. The barracks was historically home to the Royal Welsh Fusiliers and parts of the site remain in active Ministry of Defence occupation housing the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers and the Territorial Army. The historic buildings are a distinct feature in this part of Wrexham and the site has strong communal value for many in the Wrexham area.

The Hightown Barracks Conservation Area was designated in February 2000.

Holt

Holt is located approximately five miles to the north east of Wrexham and is situated on the border between Wales and England. It lies on a flat plateau above the south western banks of the River Dee and faces the Cheshire village of Farndon directly across the River to the north. The distinctive red sandstone bridge that spans the River between the two villages represents an ancient link between the two countries.

The conservation area covers most of the settlement taking in the medieval core of the village as well as extending outwards along the main routes into the village centre.

The Holt Conservation Area was designated in August 1975 and its boundary amended and enlarged in March 1999. The Holt Conservation Area Assessment was adopted in November 1990. The Holt article 4(2) direction came into effect in October 2000.

The Character Assessment and Management Plan document for this conservation area will be added once it has been updated in line with Welsh Language Standards and accessibility standards.

Llanarmon Dyffryn Ceiriog

Llanarmon Dyffryn Ceiriog is approximately 15km (9 miles) south west of Chirk on the B4500 road. It is 11km (7 miles) south west of Llangollen and 14km (9 miles) to the west of Oswestry. The village lies almost at the head of the Ceiriog valley, approximately 870 feet above sea level in the folds of the Berwyn Mountains. 

The conservation area encompasses the historic village centre.

The Llanarmon Dyffryn Ceiriog Conservation Area was first designated in August 1975 and its boundary amended in February 2000. The Llanarmon Dyffryn Ceiriog Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in March 2010.

Marchwiel

Marchwiel is a small village located 2 miles east of Wrexham. The settlement has developed in a linear pattern along the A525 Wrexham to Whitchurch Road. The village is situated on a small hillock and offers extensive views to the north over the flood plains of the River Dee and into Cheshire beyond.

The conservation area is centred on the area around the Church of St Deiniol & St Marcella and the historic, early 18th Century turnpike road from Chester to Shrewsbury. To the south of the conservation area, the surrounding area is rural in character, dominated by pasture fields and gently undulating hills. To the north, the character is distinctly urban comprising mainly 20th Century residential estates.

The Marchwiel Conservation Area was designated in 1975 and its boundary amended and reduced in April 2000. The Marchwiel Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in February 2011.

Marford

Marford is situated approximately 4 miles to the north east of Wrexham on the former main Wrexham to Chester Road. The village developed around Marford Hill which rises upwards marking the junction between the low-lying Cheshire Plain and the Welsh hills. The Cheshire Plain provides an important backdrop to the village extending for many miles to the east and providing views of distant landmarks including Eaton Hall and the River Dee. On the far horizon, interrupting the skyline are the Bickerton Hills.

The conservation area centres on the unique historic core of the village which clings to the lower woodland slopes of Marford Hill. The attractive picturesque cottage orné design of many of the buildings gives the village a distinct identity and creates a strong sense of place within the conservation area.

The Marford Conservation Area was first designated in 1971 and its boundary reviewed and amended in 1999 and again in 2012.

The Marford Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in March 2012.

Minera

Minera sits some 7km to the west of Wrexham occupying an elevated upland position at the head of the Clywedog Valley, overlooked to the south by the prominent north-facing limestone scarp of Esclusham Mountain. The upland topography, open and exposed ground and lack of tree cover create distinctive scenery and provide Minera with far-reaching views down the Clywedog Valley and towards Wrexham Town Centre.

The conservation area focuses upon the historic settlement which is dispersed and scattered on both sides of the Clywedog Valley. Development of the area has been greatly influenced by the historic exploitation of minerals and stones during the Industrial Revolution of the late 18th and 19th Centuries, the remnants of which remain hidden within the surrounding landscape.

The recent extension to the Clwydian Range Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) has included the eastern slope of the Esclusham Mountain with part of the western section of the conservation area also included within the AONB boundary. This designation reinforces the significance of the landscape to the character of Minera Conservation Area.

The Minera Conservation Area was first designated in July 1975 and its boundary amended and enlarged in May 1981 and July 2002 to take in more of the areas historic buildings and remnants of former industrial activity and the sections of the surrounding landscape which strengthen the character of the area. The Minera Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in December 2012.

Overton

Overton is located approximately 7 miles south east of Wrexham and sits on top of a steep wooded bank high above the River Dee. There are many private residences to the western side with views across the wooded and agricultural landscapes of the Dee Valley and the Berwyn Mountains.

The conservation area is at the heart of the village which has developed alongside the key routes of the A539 Wrexham to Whitchurch road and the A528 Marchwiel to Ellesmere which converge at its centre.

The Overton Conservation Area was first designated in 1971 and its boundary amended in February 1999. The Overton Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in December 2010. The Overton article 4(2) direction came into effect in January 2011.

Pen-y-Cae

Pen-y-Cae is a small village located 7 miles south west of Wrexham. The settlement lies on the slopes of the Ruabon Mountain where the varying topography creates a picturesque setting for many properties and forms a dramatic rural backdrop to the conservation area.

The Pen-y-Cae Conservation Area is centred on the historic core of Pentre Cristionydd which as its name suggests has strong historic religious connotations to Valle Crucis near Llangollen. Here the Trefechan and Nant-y-Crogfryn brooks flow into the conservation area, converging at its centre below a series of historic stone bridges. The conservation area has a strong rural character reinforced by the scattered layout of the buildings, the narrow footpaths, abundance of trees and views of the surrounding landscape. This rural character is in direct contrast to the more densely settled and barren streets to the south.

The Pen-y-Cae Conservation Area was first designated in 1976 and its boundary amended and reduced in January 2003 and June 2011. The Pen-y-Cae Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in June 2011.

Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Conservation Area covers part of the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal World Heritage Site extending from the Llangollen canal Trevor Basin terminus in the settlement of Pontcysyllte, southwards as far as the settlement of Froncysyllte. It is located to the south west of Trevor, 6 miles south of Wrexham and 3 miles east of Llangollen. The historic A5 route from London to Holyhead, constructed by Thomas Telford, runs to the south, through the village of Froncysyllte. To the north is the A539 road to Ruabon, and the settlement of Trevor. The most prominent structure is the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct.

The conservation area is linear in form with its axis aligned approximately North - South. It incorporates key structures important in the canal development of the basin and is clearly different from the areas of 20th Century housing adjacent to the north and south ends. It includes the essential setting of the Aqueduct, the approach embankment and buildings associated with them.

The Trevor Basin Conservation Area was designated on the 6th July 1998 and extended and renamed the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Conservation Area on 14th July 2009. The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in July 2009. The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct article 4(2) direction came into effect in August 2009.

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Rossett

Rossett is a large village located approximately 6.5 miles to the north of Wrexham and close to the Cheshire and English border. The village is bounded to the west by the A483 dual carriageway and the Wrexham to Chester railway line. To the south flows the River Alyn which loops round to the north east where it joins the River Dee, its meandering course demarcating the English and Welsh border. The surrounding countryside is typically flat and intensively farmed with an abundance of hedges and hedge row trees. Long views across the flat open farmland are achievable to the north and east where gaps in development and lower hedge rows permit. To the south and west the landscape is more dramatic against the backdrop of the Welsh Hills.

The Rossett Conservation Area was designated in October 2011. The Rossett Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was also adopted in October 2011. The Rossett article 4(2) direction came into effect in January 2012.

Ruabon

Ruabon conservation area encompasses the heart of the village, which is located approximately 6 miles south of Wrexham. Ruabon Mountain rises up to the west and the Afon Eitha runs directly through the village.

The conservation area centres on the Grade I listed Church of St Mary’s. The influences of the prominent Wynnstay Estate as well as local industries are displayed in the various architectural styles evident in the villages’ development.

The Ruabon Conservation Area was first designated in August 1975 and its boundary amended in February 1998 and December 2010. The Ruabon Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in December 2010. The Ruabon Conservation Area article 4(2) direction came into effect in September 2010 and the Grenville Terrace article 4(2) direction came into effect in December 2010.

Salisbury Park (Wrexham)

Salisbury Park Conservation Area is located to the south of the historic core of Wrexham Town Centre, elevated above the River Gwenfro and St Giles Way. The area overlooks the town centre and has excellent views of St Giles Church tower, one of the seven Wonders of Wales.

The conservation area has a strong linear form connecting Kingsmills Road in the east and Pen y Bryn in the North West. Salisbury Road, Poplar Road and Chapel Street form the spine of the conservation area with minor roads and streets offering linkages to the later and humbler terraced streets of Talbot Road, Fairfield Road and Bryn Draw Terrace.

The Salisbury Park Conservation Area was first designated in November 1996 and its boundary amended and extended to include part of Earle Street in 2013. The Salisbury Park Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in April 2013. The Salisbury Park article 4(2) direction came into effect in February 1997.

Worthenbury

Although Worthenbury lies within the boundary of Wrexham County Borough it is situated geographically on the Cheshire Plain. The village is approximately 8 miles to the south east of Wrexham between Bangor Is y Coed and Malpas on the B5069.  The Emral and Wych Brooks converge at Worthenbury to become Worthenbury Brook, a tributary of the River Dee, which lies 1 mile to the north-west.

The Worthenbury Conservation Area was first designated in March 1971 and its boundary amended and extended in April 2000 and again in November 2009. The Worthenbury Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in November 2009.

Wrexham Town Centre

Wrexham is in the centre of the densely populated industrial North-east Wales, close to the Cheshire border, approximately 8 miles south of Chester. The town is the largest in North Wales and is home to approximately 40% of the total population of the county borough. Often described as the capital of North Wales, Wrexham is an area of commercial and industrial growth.

The Wrexham Town Centre Conservation Area includes the main historic and commercial streets of the town centre where the Parish Church of St Giles is the main focal point.

The Wrexham Town Centre Conservation Area was designated in March 1974 and its boundary extended in August 1975, June 1985 and April 2007.  The Wrexham Town Centre Conservation Area Character Assessment and Management Plan was adopted in January 2009.

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