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Home | Dolwyddelan Church, Saint Gwyddelans Church, Dolwyddelan North Wales. Pictures and information on St Gwyddelan's Church
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St Gwyddelan's Church

St. Gwyddelan's Church is not the original Church in Dolwyddelan. The original Church was nearer to Dolwyddelan Castle at Bryn y Bedd. But Meredydd ab Ieuan (Maredudd ab Ieuan) ap Robert, the ancestor of the Wynn family of Gwydir and Llanrwst came to live in Dolwyddelan in the late fifteenth century. At the time the area was over run with bandits, a gang of outlaws based at the Knights of St. John hospice in Ysbyty Ifan (nothing changes !).
St Gwyddelan's Church DolwyddelanMeredydd had a household in Cwm Penamnen, the valley to the South of the village, which was vulnerable to the outlaws especially when he would leave with his entourage to worship in the old church. His solution was quite drastic and involved demolishing the old church and rebuilding it nearer to Penamnen. This church, the present Church of St Gwyddelan's, was built within site of the rocky outcrop known as Carreg Alltrem at the entrance to the Valley, and thus enabled Meredydd to post lookouts  with views of both the church and his household in Penamnen. It is said that Meredydd was able to see the lookouts from his pew in the church and was thus able to react swiftly to any threat from the outlaws.

There are many points of interest in the Church including a very old bell, traditionally called Cloch Wyddelan, or St Gwyddelan’s Bell. The bell was dug up on the site of the old church in the 19th Century and is thought to have been brought by St. Gwyddelan from Ireland in the 7th Century. In the East window there are fragments of glass from 1512; on one front pew is carved, in Welsh, "A bench for the hard of hearing". Look for the "Dolwyddelan Dragon", carved on a beam in the North side.

Location :

The Church is located midway between the Railway Station and the Pub, in the centre of the village, in Church Street, Dolwyddelan, North Wales, Opening is restricted.


Please click on the pictures below for enlarged pictures of St Gwyddelan's Church Dolwyddelan. © All pictures and text copyright Bernard Wellings

Gravestones in St gwyddelans Churchyard St Gwyddelan's Church Porch and more gravestones
Gravestones in St Gwyddelan's Churchyard
St Gwyddelan's Church Porch and more gravestones
Demolished lychgate in Dolwyddelan    

Whoops ! I warned you about the local council. In 2006 the local council dustbin lorry reversed into the lychgate


You may think it odd for me to take so many pictures of old grave stones but I like them! And I think it best to record them before the local council knock them all down in the name of  "elf and safety". (Health and Safety to any non Brits reading the page)
In Britain the local councils have a policy to go round "testing" gravestones for stability and if they are deemed unstable then they are pushed over.

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