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Holy Cross Church, Mwnt

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Map ReferenceSN15SE
Grid ReferenceSN1950652016
Unitary (Local) AuthorityCeredigion
Old CountyCardiganshire
CommunityY Ferwig
Type Of SiteCHURCH
PeriodPost Medieval

Eglwys y Grog (Holy Cross Church), Mwnt, is situated some 100m east of the foreshore, adjacent to the south-east foot of Foel y Mwnt (NPRN 403286), an Iron Age defended enclosure. It is thought that the south-west quarter of the church may be constructed over a bronze age round barrow. In the medieval period the church belonged to the Deanery of Sub-Aeron. In 1546 this church was a free chapel within Llangoedmor parish (whose parish church is NPRN 310132). In 1833 the church was a parish church, and a perpetual curacy in the patronage of the impropriator of the tithes. In 1913 a former portion of the rood loft was noted within a building adjacent to the churchyard.

The church, a Grade I listed building, is constructed of rubble stone and externally whitewashed. It consists of three-bayed nave and chancel. The square, scalloped font bowl with culindrical stem and squared base, dates to the twelfth century. The south door is thought to be thirteenth-fourteenth century in date. The stair to the former rood loft has square-headed upper and lower doors, possibly dating to the fourteenth century. The bellcote, with triangular-headed opening, is thought to be fourteenth century in date.The cusped, perpendicular two-light window dates to the sixteenth century. The internal north face of the chancel has a square socket which held the end of the medieval rood beam. The oak roof dates to the fifteenth-early sixteenth century, and has cusped, king-post trusses with arch-braces. The common rafters and matchboarding are not contemporary. The floor was lowered in 1853, when the softwood pews were added. The medieval south door was blocked in the 1860s, and has a window (one of two, similar to those in the north wall) inserted into it. The windows either side of the rood loft date from the eighteenth-early nineteenth century. Their mullioned timber frames were replaced in 1996. The rood stair was unblocked in 1996, when portions of the former rood loft were revealed. They carried fragments of painted decoration. The church exterior was re-limewashed in 1996, and the interior was replastered.

Sources include:
Cambria Archaeology, 2000, Ceredigion Churches, gazetteer, 48
Source: Richard Suggett, Painted Temples: Wallpaintings and Rood-screens in Welsh Churches, 1200–1800, (RCAHMW 2021)