Welsh St Donats – St Donat’s Church

History

   The chapel at Welsh St. Donats was first mentioned in the documents in 1173 (the date 1180 is also given), however the present church of St. Donat was probably built in the 13th century and rebuilt in the 14th and 15th centuries. Until 1563, it served as a parish church for the local community. At the end of the nineteenth century, it was in a very bad condition, so it had to be renovated in 1891. Subsequent, smaller repairs were made in 1907. At the end of the 20th century, modern plasters were removed from the building, leaving stone facades.

Architecture

   The church from the 13th century consisted of a rectangular, wide nave and a much smaller and narrower, rectangular chancel on the eastern side. Probably in the 15th century, a squat tower was added from the west side, the upper part of which, separated by a cornice, crowned with a parapet with a decorative battlement, was transformed at the beginning of the 16th century. The southern entrance to the nave was preceded by a porch at the end of the Middle Ages. The second entrance for the priest was placed in the southern wall of the chancel. The original window openings were probably quite narrow and not high, perhaps closed with trefoils.

Current state

   The church has retained the medieval perimeter walls of all building elements, but most of the window openings have been modernized in the early modern period (perhaps they repeat the original forms). Inside the nave and presbytery, a late-medieval wooden roof truss has been preserved.

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

Website britishlistedbuildings.co.uk, Church of St Donat A Grade I Listed Building in Welsh St. Donats (Llanddunwyd), Vale of Glamorgan.