The Storytelling Roundhouse at Cae Mabon in Wales


If you happened to be taking a walk around a little place in Wales called Fachwen, you may come across a sign pointing to a place called Cae Mabon that nestles in an oak forest clearing by a little river that cascades down to the nearby lake. If your curiosity is strong enough to take you there, then half a mile down a woodland track you will discover a magical place with storytelling rooms, tree spirits and Celtic traditions woven into the hills.


Cae Mabon takes its name from the Welsh word ‘Cae’, which literally means ‘field’. Mabon, is an ancient character from one of the Mabinogion stories meaning ‘the Great Son of the Great Mother’ which can be translated as ‘the Divine Youth’. So ‘Cae Mabon’ can mean the ‘Field of Divine Youth’.

This beautiful stone walled thatched roundhouse is the storytelling room and centrepiece at Cae Mabon which was created over the last twenty or so years by storyteller, songwriter and author of children’s picture books, Eric Madern. Here is one of his books.



With the help of countless volunteers and natural builders from around the world, Eric has created a rare collection of beautiful natural homes. Among the natural builders who helped create Cae Mabon were Tony Wrench and Ianto Evans.

In keeping with Celtic style the roundhouse is decorated at its entrance by Celtic knotwork. If you would like to try your hand at designing knotwork this video, on the maths of knots, will give you hours of doodling fun.

  Drawing Celtic Knots by Vi Hart  

The maths of celtic knots



Circling the roundhouse is a family of elegant natural homes, among them a straw bale hogan, an oak and slate longhouse, two cedar cabins, a redwood chalet and looking down over them all a cob cottage.

It's the three arched windows of the cob cottage you can see reflecting light from the morning sun on to the snow covered slope of the thatched roof (left).

Eric tells you more about Cae Mabon in a short documentary by film makers Living in the Future.


Cae Mabon
by Living in the Future