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St Michael's Church, Penbryn

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Map ReferenceSN25SE
Grid ReferenceSN2936052110
Unitary (Local) AuthorityCeredigion
Old CountyCardiganshire
Type Of SiteCHURCH
PeriodPost Medieval
St Michael's Church is situated within a curvilinear churchyard, Aerial photography (during dry summers when grass has parched sufficiently to show buried structures) suggests a curving outer enclosure skirting the rounded hillslope below the church on the north-east side. Another circular enclosure (NPRN 405336) was identified during aerial reconnaissance in 2006, 140m south-west of the church. It parallels the church's circular churchyard, raising the likelihood that this was originally a pair of later prehistoric enclosures, with north-easterly one subsequently re-used for ecclessiastical purposes. During the medieval period the church was a parish church of the deanery of Sub-Aeron, at which time it was a possession of Talley Abbey (Premonstratensian).

The church, a Grade I Listed Building, is constructed of local rubble stone. It consists of two-bayed chancel, four-bayed nave, west porch and double bellcote. The nave is thirteenth-century in date. The chancel dates from the fourteenth century. The porch dates from the seventeenth century. The church was restored in 1887, to the designs of D. Davies, Penrhiwllan. The church was renovated in 1957, probably to the designs of A.D.R. Caroe. Exceptional roof to nave, with broad arch-braced collar-beam trusses with apex kingposts and trefoil-cusped open spandrels. The square font is medieval in date. Another medieval font is in the porch. The limestone square, scalloped font dates to the twelfth century, and was originally from St Llawddog's Church, Cenarth (NPRN 309895). It was removed to St Michael's from St John's Church, Sarnau (NPRN 400366). In 1903 it was noted that it was formerly the custom in this church for men to occupy the north benches and women the south.

Sources include:
Cambria Archaeology, 2000, Ceredigion Churches, gazetteer, 48

RCAHMW, 7 February 2013