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St Mary's Church, Old Church Street, Newtown, Montgomeryshire

St Mary's Church, Newtown

Denomination: Anglican

Dedication: St Mary

Built: 13th century
Abandoned: 1856
Partial restoration: 1939

Photography: John Ball
Date: 18 June 2009
Camera: Nikon D50 digital SLR

Note 1: The ruins of the medieval double-naved parish church abandoned in favour of St David's in 1856 and allowed to decay. The tower was restored and the walls consolidated in 1939.
[Source: Coflein database (NPRN 303372)]

Note 2: St Mary's was the parish church until it was abandoned due to flooding in the 1840s and replaced by St David's. The low western tower is possibly 13th century although with later windows. There is a timber bell-stage. The ruinous nave originally had a south aisle. There are two doors through the south wall and a piscina.
[Source: Town Trails – Places of Worship on the Official Newtown Website]

St Mary's Church, Newtown
St Mary's Church, Newtown
St Mary's Church, Newtown

Note 3: Outside the nave is the grave of Robert Owen (1771-1858) the social reformer who was born in Newtown and died at the Bear Hotel. The monument (shown above) is of 1902 by Alfred Toft, with a portrait of Owen and labourers. It has railings in the fine Art Nouveau ironwork.
[Source: Town Trails – Places of Worship on the Official Newtown Website]

Note 4: Robert Owen's grave is surrounded by magnificent Art Nouveau railings made in 1902. On it stand Robert Owen's final message to posterity: 'It is the one great and universal interest of the human race to be cordially united and to aid each other to the full extent of their capacities.
[Source: Wales, by Peter Sager (translated from German by David Henry Wilson), Pallas Athene, London, 2002; ISBN 1-873429-68-1]

Right: The end panel of Robert Owen's tomb records the death of his father, also named Robert Owen, on 14th March 1804. Robert senior, originally from Welshpool, was a saddler, iron-monger and postmaster. [Source: Robert Owen; a biography, by Frank Podmore, A. M. Kelley, New York, 1907, accessible on-line on the Archive.org website]

See here for further details of Robert Owen the social reformer.

St Mary's Church, Newtown

Right: Memorial plaque to Chartist leader
Thomas Powell (1802-1862).


St Mary's Church, Newtown
St Mary's Church, Newtown

Note 5: Inside the ruinous nave is a mausoleum for the Pryce family of Newtown Hall. [Source: Town Trails – Places of Worship on the Official Newtown Website]

St Mary's Church, Newtown
St Mary's Church, Newtown

Note 6: Against the interior of the east wall of the nave is a memorial stone to three young daughters of Edmund and Jane Symonds of Newtown. The stone is topped by what appear to be two wagon wheels. The inscription, most of which is just about legible on the original stone, reads:

This Stone is Erected / to the Memory of / MARTHA, Daughter of EDMUND / and JANE SYMONDS of this Town / who died June 8th 1800 Aged 15 Years. / Also of MARY the Daughter of the / above Named, who died May 7th 1802 / Aged 1 Year / Also of ELIZABETH the Daughter of the above Named, who died - - - mber 6th 1807 - - - - / Also of - - - -
[remainder illegible]

Edmund himself died in 1821. His will, accessible on the website of the National Library of Wales, describes him as a yeoman.



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