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Saint Winefred’s Well: The Legend

Out & About

Category: Out & About

Sarah Twist

Written by: 7th March 2017

Estimated time to read: 2 minutes

Darwin Escapes talks Saint Winefred’s Well for Wales’ Year of Legends 2017!

2017 is the Year of Legends for Wales, with such a historic and rich culture there are countless legends to learn about. Darwin Escapes has four beautiful locations in North Wales, and Talacre Beach Holiday Home Park is just 15 minutes away from Holywell, the site of the famous St. Winefred’s Well.

So what’s the story behind the Well? We thought St. Winefred could tell you that… the following story is told from Winefred’s point of view (or at least what we would imagine she’d say…)


My legend says I’m beautiful, that was nice of them! I chose a religious path and vowed chastity, but a horrible man Caradog just would not leave me alone. No matter how much I said no to a date with him, he just would not stop asking, he was besotted with me – is that boastful to say?

Well one night I was walking to worship, as I always did, minding my own business and Caradog, who was very drunk (argh). He asked me on a date (again), I rejected him (again) and he lost his temper. Caradog drew his sword and lopped my head off! So there I was, head a few feet from my body thinking “well that was a bit of an over reaction wasn’t it?”

St Beuno, my guardian, saw what happened from the church, come running and cursed Caradog, who fell over and died immediately. So I’m left, in pieces, waiting for what happens now and then Beuno picks my head up and sticks it back on my body – just like that! I knew he was a good choice in a guardian, he said that a spring had emitted on the ground where my head was and it was because I was so pure of heart. I was glad he said that it was a spring because I was worried I had drooled, that would have been embarrassing!

I completely recovered from all this, with only a thin line circling my throat that indicated anything had happened. Beuno asked for Caradog’s family, who were full of sinners, to be cursed to bark like dogs, and could only be cured if they bathed in the new spring and sought penance from the church.

I went on to become a nun and made Abbess of Gwytherin in beautiful Llanrwst. My body, with my head full attached, rests in Shrewsbury Abbey if you wanted to come and say hello, I like getting visitors!


And there you go ladies and gents, the story of St Winefred’s Well from the lady herself (sort of). The Well is said to have magical healing properties and it once even powered a watermill, you can learn all sorts of facts at the Well and even swim in it yourself!

If you wanted to visit, and even swim in, St Winefred’s Well now is the perfect time, Talacre Beach Holiday Home Park has opened it’s doors for a new season of family fun! Book your holiday now and explore more about the legend of St. Winefred’s Well!

Happy Legend Hunting!

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