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All Saints' Church, Ammanford

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Map ReferenceSN61SW
Grid ReferenceSN6293612683
Unitary (Local) AuthorityCarmarthenshire
Old CountyCarmarthenshire
Type Of SiteCHURCH
PeriodPost Medieval
All Saints Church is an imposing building, situated within a rectilinear churchyard, on hillside to the east of College Street. Its clock tower is visible for miles around. It was built in 1911 in order to accommodate the growing nineteenth century town's increasing number of worshippers. The first church in Ammanford was St Michael's Church (NPRN 12745) in Wind Street, built and dedicated in 1885. St Michael's soon became too small to accommodate all of the town's parishioners, and in 1900 a church hall was built across the road from St Michael's Church, to be used both as a Sunday school and an overspill for church services. However, there was still not enough room to take all would-be worshipers. I n November 1903 it was decided to build a new, larger parish church. The church, funded by voluntary donations and public subscription, was built in two stages. The foundation stone was laid by Lady Dynevor in 1911 and the main section was completed in 1915. The tower, by Charles Mercer, Swansea, was completed in 1924-6 as war memorial.

The church is a Grade II listed building, considered a powerfully designed example of a full-scale late Gothic Revival church. It is constructed of rock-raced coursed squared Forest of Dean stone with Bath stone dressings and some purple stone. The roofs consist of Westmorland slate. The building is Free Perpendicular Gothic in style, and is nearly identical to Gorseinon Church, which was built by the same architect, W D Jenkins, Llandeilo. The tower was completed as a War Memorial in 1924-6 by Charles Mercer, Swansea. The building consists of north-west tower, nave and aisles, chancel and chancel transepts. The windows have generally segmental-pointed heads, hoodmoulds and purple stone relieving arches. The gables are coped and shouldered with some cross finials. The west window has six lights and is positioned over the three-sided baptistery with parapet. The nave consists of five bays with paired two-light clerestorey windows in sunk panels, lean-to aisles with buttresses and three-light windows. The south aisle has a door in its left bay. The north aisle abuts the tower. The south door has a hoodmould with its finial extended upwards into a curved stepped parapet. The tower is of four stages, and has big clasping buttresses, stepped once, with the vertical faces battered. Its west door is deeply recessed with a heavily moulded head and hoodmould with finial. The second stage has plain two-light windows. Above are ornate paired Perpendicular style two-light bell-lights. The next stage consists of the big circular clock faces, with the fourth stage consisting of ornate panelled battlements.

The interior fittings were designed by Jenkins and made by Haughton, Worcester. They include a Perpendicular style timber pulpit on stone base, chancel desks and stalls, an octagonal stone font. Gothic reredos in timber (1936), and an eagle lectern (1914). There is a total immersion font under the nave floor.

Sources include:
Cadw, Listed Buildings Database

N Vousden, RCAHMW, 20 August 2012