Gardd Fotaneg Genedlaethol CymruNational Botanic Garden of WalesNational Botanic Garden of Wales

The Pre-Middleton era

There is, as yet, no clear historical evidence for what existed on the Middleton estate prior to c.1600. It is likely that there was a change of name when the Middleton family acquired the land, but what its name had been we do not know. What we do know, from the traces of ancient field boundaries recently found to survive within the Park, is the land had previously been farmed, probably for at least two thousand years.

In the seventh century this place was part of the kingdom of Seisyllwg, successor to the area controlled by the Romans from Moridunum (now Carmarthen), possibly based on the pre-Roman tribal territory of the Demetae. Following the Norman invasion the kingdom was reduced to a rump centered on the Tywi Valley. The rulers were then the Princes of Deheubarth, until in the 12th century it ended up in the hands of the English King. It was then absorbed into a single marcher lordship finally being incorporated into the Shire of Carmarthen under the Act of Union in 1536.

The area was surveyed in 1609 by the Duchy of Lancaster and it records one Christopher Middleton as being in possession of a substantial, probably newly acquired freeholding.