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Parish Church of St Peter

A Grade II* Listed Building in Llanfoist Fawr (Llan-ffwyst Fawr), Monmouthshire

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Latitude: 51.8272 / 51°49'37"N

Longitude: -3.0525 / 3°3'8"W

OS Eastings: 327565

OS Northings: 214812

OS Grid: SO275148

Mapcode National: GBR F4.W1GN

Mapcode Global: VH796.1BNL

Plus Code: 9C3RRWGX+V2

Entry Name: Parish Church of St Peter

Listing Date: 9 January 1956

Last Amended: 15 March 1996

Grade: II*

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 1980

Building Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Location: Situated in the flood plain of the River Usk and reached from the by-road south of the A40. Churchyard retains some good monuments.

County: Monmouthshire

Community: Llanfoist Fawr (Llan-ffwyst Fawr)

Community: Llanfoist Fawr

Locality: Llanwenarth

Traditional County: Monmouthshire

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History: Although the church is said to have C6/C7 origins the present fabric dates from the early C14. The tower has been dated to 1631 although the detail suggests that it is earlier and possibly partly medieval. The whole church was remodelled in 1877 (see date in porch). This work followed the division of the parish in 1860 into Llanwenarth Citra and Llanwenarth Ultra.

Exterior: Decorated chancel and taller C19 aisless nave and south porch with west tower. Local sandstone rubble and stone slate roof with gable parapets and crucifix finials. The chancel has good 3-light ogee-reticulated east window with similar 2-light window to south side together with an ogee-headed priests' doorway and an ogee-headed lancet; the doorway retains its iron hinges. N side has 2-light window in a plain surround. Nave has cusped 2-light windows with carved headstops to south and simpler 2-light windows to north, one of Y-tracery type. Gabled porch has C14 2-order arch of dressed sandstone with C19 iron gates; tiny splayed window opening to east side. Bench seating within and wagon roof, panelled with roll moulded timber ribs. Cusped lancet to west of porch where nave overlaps the square west tower which appears to have been partly built up from a medieval west gable end. It is of 3-stages with crenellated parapet, gargoyles and weathervane. 2-light belfry openings, triangular headed to south and north, square-headed to west. Below the bell-stage is a sundial to south and an offset lancet to west face; no west door.

Interior: Simple interior largely dating from the 1877 remodelling although retaining a C16/C17 wagon roof to the nave (similar to that of the porch) with moulded ribs and rosette bosses. C19 Decorated 2-order chancel arch with semi-octagonal jambs and good carved headstops. The chancel retains early C14 ogee-headed single-drain piscina now at low level following raising of the sanctuary floor in the 1877 restoration; at the same time the chancel was given a boarded roof, raised and cusped over altar. Romanesque font bowl retained on later square base. The Victorian furnishings include a panelled oak reredos with central mandorla and an open-traceried, timber pulpit. The nave has one late C18 monument by Walker of Bristol and there are two dated (1867 and 1911) stained glass windows in the chancel. The west tower is entered through a low, acutely pointed arch (similar to belfry openings), with split-stone voussoirs; on the inner side is a heavily moulded beam in C16 manner and possibly contemporary with the nave ceiling. Both this arch into the tower and the south door into the tower stairs have broach stops which would be an archaic detail for 1631 and more likely to be C16. The wall of which the stairs door is part is not bonded into the west end wall which may suggest that the tower was built up from an earlier medieval gable end. The tower stairs starts with a straight lower flight and above, it is narrow and winding.

Graded II* for its surviving medieval fabric and good sub-medieval work.
Reference: H R Sproule-Jones, Some Notes on the Parish of Llanwenarth Citra, Parish of St Peter's. (1971).

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