Gwernesney – St Michael and All Angels Church

History

   The first church in Gwernesney was built in the first half of the 13th century, as it was first recorded in written sources in 1254. At the beginning of the 14th century, it was thoroughly rebuilt, or actually built from scratch. Minor changes were made to the late Gothic style in the 15th century. In the years 1853–1854 the church was renovated.

Architecture

   The building consists of a wide, rectangular nave, a much narrower and shorter rectangular chancel and a porch attached to the southern wall of the nave. The original windows were pointed openings, some filled with trefoils. At the end of the 15th century, some of them were transformed into two-light ones in rectangular frames, crowned with ogee arches. The west façade was decorated with a single narrow window and a simple pointed portal. The second entrance led from the south through the aforementioned porch in which two stone benches were placed. Inside the presbytery, a late-medieval rood screen separated from the nave, which was covered with a wooden barrel vault.

Current state

   Despite the Victorian renovation, the church has retained several original window openings (eastern window of the chancel, western and northern in the nave) and several late Gothic windows (southern windows in the nave and chancel). Inside the nave, a late-medieval roof truss and a 15th-century rood screen separating the presbytery from the nave have been preserved. The bellcote over the nave was built in the early modern period, although two bells from the 13th century have survived.

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bibliography:
Salter M., The old parish churches of Gwent, Glamorgan & Gower, Wolverhampton 2002.

Website britishlistedbuildings.co.uk, Church of St Michael and All Angels A Grade I Listed Building in Llantrisant Fawr, Monmouthshire.
Website coflein.gov.uk, St Michael, Gwernesney.