Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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BARHAM (formerly NOEL , née MIDDLETON ), DIANA ( 1763 - 1823 ), peeress [in her own right, 1813], benefactress of the evangelical movement .

The only daughter of Charles Middleton , lord Barham , and Margaret his wife, of Barham Court , Kent . She m. Sir Gerard Noel in 1780 .

In 1813 she settled in Gower , and, being of an evangelical disposition, began with the help of the Methodists to establish religious congregations and to build chapels for them in the English -speaking parts of the peninsula. Her association with the Methodists was not always happy, but she was also able to enlist the support of the Independents .

She d. 12 April 1823 at Fairy Hill , Gower . Some years after her death her son Charles , lord Barham — afterwards lord Gainsborough — made over the chapels to trustees. Of the six chapels built by her, two still belong to the Calvinistic Methodists and four to the Independents .


  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (under ‘Middleton’);
  • Burke's … Peerage, Baronetage, and Knightage , 1949 , 803;
  • The Cambrian , 19 April 1823 ;
  • W. Williams , A memoir of the life and labours of the Rev. William Griffiths, Burry Green, Gower (1863) ;
  • Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru , ii, 435-9.
  • Alicia Gower-Jones, ed., Gower memories of William Griffiths (Llandysul, 1957), (autobiography of William Griffiths , 1788 - 1861 ).


Reverend Gomer Morgan Roberts, M.A., (1904-93), Pont-rhyd-y-fen / St Dogmael's / Llandybïe

Published date: 1959