St Cynidr and St Mary's Church, Llangynidr, Breconshire
Dedication: St Cynidr and St Mary
Built: 13th century with later additions
Rebuilt: 19th century
Colour photography: John Ball
Dates: 3 July 2010 / 16 June 2000 (final shot)
Cameras: Nikon D50 digital SLR / Sigma SA-300 35 mm SLR (final shot)
Note 1. The original Llangynidr church was destroyed by fire on the night of 13 December 1928. Only the walls remained standing. A full report on the fire was published in the Brecon and Radnor Express weekly newspaper, dated 20 December 1928 – see full transcript.
Note 2. The church at Llangynidr is dedicated to St Mary and St Cynidr and lies about six kilometres to the west of Crickhowell, on the opposite side of the River Usk. The structure was completely rebuilt after a fire in 1928 and only a broken font and a few other fixtures survive from the earlier building. The old stone was re-used, but the upper wall faces of the nave (and possibly the chancel) have new masonry. The churchyard was probably once sub-circular.
[Source: Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust (CPAT) website, where further details are provided]
Right: The 19th century church, before the fire of 1928. [Source: The Churches of Brecknockshire, by Mrs Gerard Finch Dawson, A. R. Way, Swansea, 1909]
Below: The church ruins after the fire in December 1928. [Source: An Introduction to the History of Llangynidr, by Dorothea Watkins, for the Llangynidr Local History Society, 1986]
Note 3. The Church of this parish, situated about a mile south of the Usk, was in a very dilapidated condition in [Theophilus] Jones's time. Since then it has been rebuilt, and is now  in excellent condition. There is nothing striking about it to call for notice. There is a small tower at the west end with two bells. Monuments to Lewis, Jarvis, Griffiths, Nicholas.
John Bowen, who was Rector here 1678, married Margaret, daughter of Giles Nicholas. The families of Nicholas, Bowen, and Griffiths were here so long succeeding each other as parish priests that the old register calls them "hereditary rectors" of Llangynidr. The oldest register (marriages) dated 1754; an older one seems to have been lost. Communion plate, modern; 2 patens, with inscription, "an offering to God" Chalice and Flagon. The only interesting piece is a silver cup inscribed, "Edward Williams and Jenkin Lewis, church wardens, 1671."
[Source: The Churches of Brecknockshire, by Mrs Gerard Finch Dawson, A. R. Way, Swansea, 1909]
Above: St Cynidr & St Mary's Church - southeastern aspect.
Below: Western aspect.
Note 4. Restoration in 1873 and refurbishment after a fire in 1928 have left just a broken 13th century font, a stoup, and a square cross-base outside in the churchyard.
Above: Chancel, sanctuary and north window.
[Source: The Old Parish Churches of Mid Wales, by Mike Salter, published 2003, Folly Publications, Malvern. ISBN 1-871731-62-3]
Below: Southeast aspect of nave.
Above: East window (left) and font (right).
Above: 17th century memorial stone (detail right) in the nave of the church. The stone bears the inscription below:
|HERE LIETH THE BODY
OF RICHARD THE SON
OF GILES NICOLAS
RECTOR OF THIS PAR
ISH WHO DEPARTED
THIS LIFE THE 27 DAY
OF DECEMBER ANNO
DOMINI 1666 AGED
Below: Path leading from lychgate, through churchyard to church entrance.