Our Objectives

The Tywi Centre objectives are to ensure everyone who is responsible for looking after, or working on an old building has the right information, skills and materials for carrying out sensitive and appropriate repairs.  This will ensure that the old buildings of West Wales, both listed and non- listed, are around for a further 100 years and more. 

The site

The Tywi Centre is based at Dinefwr Farm, Llandeilo.  It is a Grade II listed group of barns, originally the Home Farm of the Newton House Estate, which is now run by the National Trust.  We have classroom facilities and can accommodate up to 20 people on a course or at a meeting, and an area for displays about old buildings.  We also have a series of specialist skills training facilities: a Plastering workshop where students can learn about plastering onto laths and creating running moulds; an outdoor shelter to practice external rendering techniques; a Carpentry workshop, large enough to accommodate both sash window work and timber frame repairs; and space to deliver stonemasonry training.

The services

We work with owners of old listed and non-listed buildings, with heritage and non-heritage contractors, with colleges and local charities – in fact anyone who wants to look after old buildings in Wales.  We can deliver one-to-one ‘surgeries’; training in maintenance and repair; specific craft skills training; guidance leaflets; and endless encouragement and support.


The Team

Nell Hellier

I am the Senior Built Heritage Officer at Carmarthenshire County Council and have been working in traditional building conservation at the Tywi Centre since 2008.  I live in an old building and so am familiar with all the challenges that come with it!  I am responsible for managing the Built Heritage Services of the county and delivering all the Tywi Centre projects, so if you need any training or general information about old buildings please contact me.  If I can’t help you I will always be happy to point you towards someone who can.  I am also involved in working across Wales to promote the heritage building agenda with the Welsh Traditional Buildings Forum and Cadw, amongst others.

Helena Burke

I am the Heritage Skills and Project Officer for Carmarthenshire and am based at the Tywi Centre in Llandeilo.  I have run the HLF funded Bursary Training Programme which has seen over 100 people become qualified in traditional building skills, and my mission is to stay in touch with them all, keeping them up to date with opportunities for training or advances in the industry, mainly via social media.  Project Delivery is my forte so working with the Tywi Centre team to inspire and engage people about Wales’s amazing heritage is where I come into my own.

Sharon Phillips

We are delighted to welcome Sharon Phillips as our newest recruit at the Tywi Centre. Sharon will be working as a Schools Heritage Project Officer with rural schools in Carmarthenshire over the next 12 months. Whilst working with schools, Sharon will develop a teaching resource which will also be available on line. This exciting project looks at two aspects of Carmarthenshire’s rich heritage, firstly the cultural heritage and the key characters that shaped not only our county, but Wales and the Welsh language in addition. Secondly the resource will assist Key Stage 2 teachers to deliver lessons on Carmarthenshire’s Built Heritage with its rich tapestry of fascinating buildings ranging from cottages to castles. For more details of this exciting project please contact us at the Tywi Centre.