Llangwm Uchaf – St Jerome’s Church


   The parish church in Llangwm was recorded for the first time in historical documents in 1128. In the thirteenth century, the church had to undergo a significant reconstruction, because the oldest fragments of the current building date back to this century. It was also enlarged in the fifteenth century, when the church tower was added. In the nineteenth century, the temple was in ruin, which is why in 1863 a thorough Victorian renovation combined with reconstruction was carried out.


   The church is a rather unusual building for rural areas of Wales, consisting of a longitudinal nave on a rectangular plan, a short rectangular chancel, and a fifteenth-century tower with a polygonal south-west turret that houses a staircase, attached to presbytery northern wall. The whole tower is topped with a prominent parapet with decorative crenelage. The interior of the nave and presbytery was originally lit by small windows closed at the top with trefoils. A distinctive feature was the west window in the nave façade, two-light, with a cylindrical opening over two trefoils. The late Gothic window openings in the tower were crowned with ogee arches and embedded in rectangular recesses. In the 15th century, a new, large, late-Gothic window was also embedded in the southern wall of the nave. It received a four-light form with ogee arches set in a four-sided jamb.

Current state

   The church is one of the most valuable medieval monuments in the Pembrokeshire region, boasting a lofty, atypically situated tower. The porch on the south side of the nave and most of the windows come from the 19th century, but they are distinguished by a very high quality of workmanship and do not differ significantly in form from the original openings. Inside, the most valuable element is the 15th-century oak rood screen separating the nave from the presbytery.

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Salter M., The old parish churches of Gwent, Glamorgan & Gower, Malvern 2002.

Wooding J., Yates N., A Guide to the churches and chapels of Wales, Cardiff 2011.
Website britishlistedbuildings.co.uk, Church of St Jerome A Grade I Listed Building in Llangwm, Monmouthshire.