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Castelldwyran Church, Castelldwyran

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Map ReferenceSN11NW
Grid ReferenceSN1442018220
Unitary (Local) AuthorityPembrokeshire
Old CountyCarmarthenshire
Type Of SiteCHURCH
PeriodPost Medieval

Castell Dwyran Church is situated at Castell Dwyran Farm, down a farm track some 350m south of the adjacent B road. Castell Dwyran is located some 280m from a spring which is the source of the Afon Daulan. The original church is thought to date to the thirteenth century, and is thought not to have existed independently until after the reformation. In 1844 Lewis' Topographical Dictionary stated that the church was a chapel of ease to St Philip and St James's Church, Cilymaenllwyd (NPRN 309885). According to local tradition, the church took its name from a castle that stood near the site known as Castell Dwy Ran. The castle was supposedly held in equal portions by two sisters. Castell Dwyran chuch is located some 800m west of an exposed section of Roman road (NPRN 276061) at Bryn Farm.

The original church building consisted of a single chamber, with a west doorway whose measurements are given as 5ft 9in to the crown of the arch. The plain font is square in shape, and was whitewashed in 1912. It is reported to measure 22in externally, and is thought to be thirteenth century. A stoup in the chancel is said to have been found in the wall of the chancel arch, and is also thought to be thirteenth century in date.

The majority of the current building dates from 1856. It was built on the same footprint as it predecessor.

Sources include:

N Vousden, RCAHMW, 4 October 2012



Three building phases:

1)    The original one-cell church, which, due to its thick walls and uncut coins on its outer corners, (heights from 2’ to 6’) looks pre C19.

2)    The south wall either collapsed or fell into poor structural condition and is likely to have been rebuilt in the Victorian era because it is thinner. There is a 7” difference in thickness between N and S walls, rendering the entrance door (original) off-centre and creating an awkward pew detail at the rear of the nave.

3)    The addition of all the butted extensions to create a cruciform plan and probable raising of the bellcote.  The porch, with its chiselled coins looks late.

The original east wall is considerably tapered on plan with a 6” difference in thickness from N to S.  This puts the chancel at an angle on plan, with the interesting result that the stained glass window was put in off -centre on the new E gable to ensure that it was seen from the rear of the nave by those entering. The stoup is simply a flat stone dished in the middle.

Information from Martin Davies, 2022.


application/pdfMDCP - Martin Davies Church Plans CollectionExisting plan and elevations for Castell Dwyran church.
application/pdfMDCP - Martin Davies Church Plans CollectionExisting sections for Castell Dwyran church.