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Church of St Donat

A Grade I Listed Building in Welsh St. Donats (Llanddunwyd), Vale of Glamorgan

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Latitude: 51.477 / 51°28'37"N

Longitude: -3.4011 / 3°24'4"W

OS Eastings: 302790

OS Northings: 176266

OS Grid: ST027762

Mapcode National: GBR HM.L57M

Mapcode Global: VH6F9.049L

Plus Code: 9C3RFHGX+QG

Entry Name: Church of St Donat

Listing Date: 28 January 1963

Last Amended: 21 December 2004

Grade: I

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 13641

Building Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Location: In the centre of Welsh St Donats village.

County: Vale of Glamorgan

Town: Cowbridge

Community: Welsh St. Donats (Llanddunwyd)

Community: Welsh St. Donats

Locality: Welsh St Donats

Traditional County: Glamorgan

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The church was first mentioned in 1173 but it is not possible to point to anything in the present structure that could date from then, the earliest survival being the font which might date from the early C13. The windows are mostly Perpendicular in type but all have been restored and, in some cases, the apparently disturbed stonework shows that the walling may be earlier. This suggests a maybe C14 building reworked in the C15 and the fine roofs date certainly from around 1500. The tower is also undatable but it appears to have had the upper part heightened or rebuilt and the castellated parapets are an addition or restoration. The main Victorian restoration was in 1891 and undertaken by Kempson and Fowler. They put in the south east nave window, unblocked the priest's door and the west door and did a general repair and refitting. There was a minor restoration in 1907 by G E Halliday. Since that date there has been little change apart from the recent removal of the pews.


The church is built mostly of local lias limestone in very roughly coursed rubble, with the quoins and dressings of Sutton stone, sandstone and, with the Victorian restorations, Bath stone; Welsh slate roofs. Nave, chancel, south porch, west tower.
The porch is set centrally in the nave south wall and has a coped gable with apex cross. Rough pointed arch entrance which has been partly rebuilt. Blind return walls. To the left is a restored flush set 2-light window with cusped trefoil head, to the right a 3-light introduced one with the central light taller. Coped gables to nave, east apex cross. The chancel has a priest's door with hollow chamfered pointed head and a 2-light window with cusped heads and dripmould over. Coped east gable with cross. East window is a similar 2-light one, but very small. Blind north wall with projection for rood stair, partly hidden by recent boarded fence. North wall of nave has two 2-light windows as the one on the south wall.
Unbutressed west tower with strongly battered base. Two stages divided by a dripband. Probably early C16 west door with only very slightly pointed head with double wave mould, late C20 plank double door. Small trefoil headed light on south wall, this was added in 1891, blind north wall. Second stage has 2-light bell openings on the north and south walls, these have pierced stone grilles, and single light ones on the east and west walls. Embattled parapet on corbels, this, and the wall immediately below it, is in crisper stonework.


Plastered and painted throughout except for a few revealed stone features. Fine medieval roofs to nave and chancel. The nave has a 5-bay arch braced collar beam roof with two tiers of curved windbraces and brattished wallplates, central collar-purlin. The chancel has a 3-bay one, also with brattished wallplates but without windbraces, central collar-purlin. The chancel arch has been reconstructed and the roodloft stair altered. Good Transitional style font which is, partly at least, C13. Benefactions board of 1774. Several good memorial inscriptions of the C18 and C19. The fittings are otherwise Victorian and later, the pews have been replaced by chairs. Pulpit 1907 by G E Halliday.

Reasons for Listing

Included and highly graded as a fine medieval church with very high quality timber roofs and other features.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Churchyard Wall of Church of St Donat
    Surrounding the Church of St Donat in the centre of the village of Welsh St Donats.
  • II Great House
    In the centre of the village of Welsh St Donats about 50m south of the Church of St Donat.
  • II Pigsty at Ty-draw
    In the south-east corner of the Community in the yard at Ty-draw Farm.
  • II Llwyn Rhyddid
    Substantial detached farmhouse set within landscaped parkland with serpentine driveway, now sub-divided into two dwellings. Mid C19 farmyard ranges to east.

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