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St Cynon's Church, Tregynon, Montgomeryshire

Denomination: Anglican

Dedication: St Cynon

Built: 15th century
Restored: 1893
Photography: Dai Bevan
Date: 2007
Camera: Kodak Z7590 Zoom digital

St Cynon's Church, Tregynon

Note 1: St Cynon's church, nearly ten miles south-west of Welshpool, is a single-chambered structure which was largely rebuilt at the end of the 18thC, though there is a completely renewed 14thC south doorway and the roof retains its C15th style as well as some of its timberwork. A timber bell turret at the western end contains original timbers that may be C17th. Internally, little of pre-19thC date, other than a couple of memorials, survived the rebuilding and the subsequent restoration in 1893. The church occupies a raised curvilinear churchyard and this together with the dedication indicates an early medieval foundation. The present building is believed to date from 1787 with additions from 1893. It has been suggested that the simple plan is basically of the C13th. There is no structural detail which can definitely be attributed to this date, though the completely renewed south doorway is thought to have originated in the C14th. And if there is any surviving masonry of the period it is not recognisable. The fabric, however, is not straightforward and might be complicated by re-use in the C18th. The bell turret was perhaps added in the C17th. [Source: CPAT website of the Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust (accessed 16 December 2015)]

Note 2: C15th church, extensively restored in 1893. Wallpaintings: documentary evidence refers to an inscription obliterated during 1893 restoration, further paintings on the east and west walls noted in 1972. [Source: Coflein database of the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales (accessed 16 December 2015)]

Note 3: The present church may be the eighth building of its kind on the site, according to the present priest-in-charge, Rev Terence Bryan. Is it by Poundley and Walker, the architects of St Maryís, Abbey Cwmhir in Radnsorshire? It certainly occupies a wonderful hillside site, looking south and east towards the Severn Valley, and down towards its charming timber-framed lich-gate, which was dedicated in the 1930ís. Like all the parishes in the united benefice, the church has a celtic patron saint. St. Cynonís stands in a raised churchyard, commanding views across the village and towards the hills encircling the Severn Valley. It has some interesting C19th & early C20th stained glass windows, and a striking white and pink alabaster reredos – it is particularly so under artificial light. [Source: Church in Wales website (accessed 16 December 2015)]

Note 4: The arch-braced roof is partly 15th century and the belfry supports may be 17th century. There is a wooden tablet of c1700 to the Blayney family at Gregynog. Otherwise the fabric and furnishings are mostly of rebuildings of 1787 and 1892. [Source: The Old Parish Churches of Mid Wales, by Mike Salter, Folly Publications, Malvern, 2003, ISBN 1-871731-62-3]

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