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Tabernacle Chapel

A Grade II Listed Building in Whitchurch, Cardiff

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Latitude: 51.5114 / 51°30'41"N

Longitude: -3.2168 / 3°13'0"W

OS Eastings: 315655

OS Northings: 179864

OS Grid: ST156798

Mapcode National: GBR K78.P5

Mapcode Global: VH6F6.688Q

Entry Name: Tabernacle Chapel

Listing Date: 31 March 1999

Last Amended: 31 May 2002

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 21572

Building Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Location: Immediately opposite to Bridge House and about 300m south-east of the Church of St. Mary.

County: Cardiff

Town: Cardiff

Community: Whitchurch (Yr Eglwys Newydd)

Community: Whitchurch

Built-Up Area: Cardiff

Traditional County: Glamorgan

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Presbyterian Church, originally Calvinistic Methodist chapel, built in 1866. This is an old fashioned classical design for 1866 but the plaque is unequivocal.


Chapel of painted stucco with Welsh slate roof. Bargeboards to pedimental gable and two storey, three window facade. Keyed roundel to gable bearing inscription: 'TABERNACLE erected by the Calvinistic Methodists 1866'. Raised stucco band below. Windows are arched with small-paned glazing and marginal glazing bars, those on upper floor original, those below imitations in C20 plastic. Much C20 bubble glass. Added porch of c1900, with slated, gabled roof, Tudor-arched opening with moulded caps to piers, moulding continued around side eaves. Original arched entrance within has pair of 3-panel doors, with fanlight over. Sides of two storeys, three bays, with exposed rubble and brick dressings on south side, flat-headed windows to ground floor, arched above. All timber sashes with small panes and marginal glazing bars. Much C20 bubble glass.
Later vestry to rear, and later chapel house to right. The house has been altered with a modern porch and windows.


Interior not seen at resurvey (November 2001), description taken from listing inspection (March 1999). Galleried interior, the galleries possibly of 1866, but later C19 pews, pulpit and organ-recess. Heavy painted timber gallery on 3 sides, with curved angles and long, horizontal panels, separated by small square panels, all heavily framed. Coved cornice beneath and five plain cast iron columns, with neck rings. Pitch-pine pews, a double centre block and single side blocks, with slatted backs and shaped bench-ends. Pews to outer bays angled towards pulpit, and two additional pews at right-angles, to left of pulpit. Gallery pews are raked, with long panels to backs and simple shaped bench ends. Ceiling has painted stucco cornice but is otherwise plain, centre rose removed. Pulpit end divided off by free-standing cast-iron railing to trilobe plan. Timber coping and rail, scrolled floral pattern to iron uprights and florid iron newels. Pitch-pine pulpit platform is large with plain steps up each side, projecting canted pulpit between open 3-bay sides, all with traceried Gothic detail. Pulpit has blank panels, and angle-shafts, under moulded top rail. Sides are curved in outer bay, with similar rail, and the whole is raised on a panelled base. Short pew behind pulpit. Behind is big opening for organ-recess, elliptical arched with Gothic traceried wooden rail across front, to match pulpit detail. Large pipe organ, the pipework in simple Gothic timber frame with machicolated upper rails and 4 uprights with finials. At rear, modern doors into narrow lobby with central, rectangular window, with marginal glazing bars. Two flights of stairs lead to original 4-panel doors to gallery. Blocked window to gallery right side, due to addition of chapel house. All arched windows are in square-headed openings internally.

Reasons for Listing

Included as a rare regional survival of a classical chapel with later C19 galleried chapel interior and for its group value with Bridge House opposite.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

  • II Front Wall, Gatepiers and Gate of No 88 (Bridge House)
    Immediately outside the front of Bridge House.
  • II Bridge House
    Immediately opposite to Tabernacle Chapel and about 300m south-east of the Church of St. Mary.
  • II Church of St. Mary
    In the centre of the Community at the junction of Church Road, Merthyr Road and Penlline Road.
  • II Six Gables
    No 27A: extends south from south return of No 27. On the main road about 100m north of the Church of St. Mary.
  • II The Laurels
    On the main road about 100m north of the Church of St. Mary.
  • II The Pines
    Immediately north of the site of the old parish church and 300m north-east of the present parish church.
  • II Whitchurch War Memorial
    In the garden outside Whitchurch Library.
  • II Whitchurch Free Library
    On the north side of the roundabout at the junction of Penlline Road, Park Road and Velindre Road.

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