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Church of St Mary

A Grade I Listed Building in Cilcain, Flintshire

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Latitude: 53.1772 / 53°10'37"N

Longitude: -3.2338 / 3°14'1"W

OS Eastings: 317637

OS Northings: 365161

OS Grid: SJ176651

Mapcode National: GBR 6W.3T49

Mapcode Global: WH774.9DCN

Plus Code: 9C5R5QG8+VF

Entry Name: Church of St Mary

Listing Date: 6 November 1962

Last Amended: 16 October 1995

Grade: I

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 295

Building Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Location: Situated in an oval churchyard close to the centre of the village.

County: Flintshire

Town: Cilcain

Community: Cilcain

Community: Cilcain

Traditional County: Flintshire

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Circular and oval churchyards are associated with the early Celtic Church, but the earliest reference to a church on the site is 1291; fragments of carved masonry of this date were found during renovations. Rebuilt at various times ultimately conforming to the Clwydian double nave form with Perpendicular detailing. The C15 hammerbeam roof to the S nave was brought from elsewhere (by tradition from Basingwerk Abbey) at an unknown date. N nave was partially rebuilt in 1746 after having stood derelict following a fire in 1532. The porch gates are of c1720 attributed to Davies and probably brought from Mold church when the Davies gates and screens were partially dismantled mid C19. The church was repaired by Ambrose Poynter 1845. Substantial restoration 1888-9 by John Douglas for W B Buddicom and carried out by his widow following his death. Works to the roof were carried out 1935-7 by F H Crossley.


Limestone rubble with roughly squared quoins, some work in red sandstone. Slate roof with red ridge tiles. Double nave with offset W tower with upper stage and stepped buttresses of late C19, S porch of same date which is fitted with a pair of very fine C18 gates. The naves are of different builds; the E end presents 2 gables, the N nave is lower and contains an offset 3-light Perpendicular window, the S nave has a taller 5-light Perpendicular window. S wall has square headed windows of the late C19 restoration, there is a blocked entrance with a cambered sandstone head, the masonry shows obvious signs of alteration and rebuilding. N side has chimney to vestry, 2 round headed windows with largely original glass of 1764 and a round headed door of the same date.


The central division is formed by an arcade apparently cut through an existing wall and now filled with screens dating from the Douglas refit. S nave without architectural chancel division has a C15 roof consisting of alternating arch bracing and hammerbeam trusses which bear static angels carrying shields with emblems of the passion, other carvings of figures, beasts and grotesques. The roof is of very high quality, boldly carved and well- finished. Its structure does not relate to the nave arcade and its scale suggests it should be at a greater height. Condition suggests it has not suffered exposure to the weather. At the E end there is a simple wagon roof. Furnishings are by Douglas though some C17 work is incorporated in the choir furnishings and a bench to the rear has reset brass plates from family pews. On the west wall are boards with the creed, Lords prayer and commandments in Welsh. One is signed `Robert Jones' and dated 1809. Organ at NE end of S nave by Rushworth & Dreaper. Stained glass in the E window is reset and restored C16 work with a central crucifixion with the Virgin and St John, SS George and Peter in the outer lights. Monuments include E wall S, Mostyn family by T Wynne 1731: broken pediment with winged putti and drapery above and urns on each side. E wall W Thomas Mostyn Edwards d 1832 by Reeves & Son of Bath: Neo-classical with Greek detailing; reset in reveal of window in S wall to Edward Eyton, d 1718 with putti, heraldic motifs etc.; on the S wall a plaque commemorating the restoration of the church in 1888 dedicated to William Baile Buddicum by his widow.

Reasons for Listing

Listed Grade I as an especially important medieval parish church of the Clwydian double nave type with an exceptionally fine C15 hammerbeam roof.

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