Bryn Zion Chapel, Gwenddwr, Breconshire
Name: Bryn Zion Chapel
Denomination: Congregational / United Reformed Church
Photography: Robert Eckley
Date: 2 Oct 2014
Camera: Panasonic DMC-TZ20 digital compact
Note 1: [...] in 1808, the congregation at Beiliheulog took over the old Baptist chapel in the village of Gwenddwr, a couple of miles down the valley, one of the main population centres of the parish. This building was used as the location of a Sunday School and for midweek meetings. It was also occasionally used for Sunday services as well. From that time onwards, the minister of Beiliheulog was also the minister at Gwenddwr, which gradually became the more important of the two chapels. The former Baptist chapel in Gwenddwr was rebuilt in 1862 in honour of those ministers who had been ejected from the church two hundred years earlier, in 1662. In the Congregational Yearbook for that time, the following reference to the new building is found, in which the reference to Welsh still being used in the area is interesting:
Gwenddwr: The new Congregational Chapel was opened, when two sermons were preached by the Revs T Evans and W Wilks. On the following day sermons were preached by the Revs DP Davies D Llewelyn and J Stephens, in English and Welsh. This cause originated in Gwenddwr soon after the passing of the Act of Uniformity. Two thirds of the expenses have been raised for the new building.
[Source: Welldigger blog (accessed 5 May 2017)]
Above: Bryn Zion Chapel.
Note 2: Bryn Zion, Gwenddwr: It was probably from that time that Gwenddwr became the more important meeting place of the Independents of the parish. Long before the early twentieth century, it would have superceded Beiliheulog almost entirely, with meetings only being held in the older of the two chapels once a month in the summer – a practice which continues to this day. The chapel at Gwenddwr was rebuilt yet again in 1888 at a cost of £400, the new chapel being called Bryn Zion. It continues in use to this day. [Source: Welldigger blog (accessed 5 May 2017)]