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Church of Saint John the Baptist

A Grade II Listed Building in Clydach, Swansea

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Latitude: 51.6956 / 51°41'44"N

Longitude: -3.8912 / 3°53'28"W

OS Eastings: 269390

OS Northings: 201343

OS Grid: SN693013

Mapcode National: GBR GZ.M7RC

Mapcode Global: VH4JY.HNR0

Entry Name: Church of Saint John the Baptist

Listing Date: 15 December 2003

Last Amended: 15 December 2003

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 82318

Building Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Location: In a prominent position at the E end of the High Street just N of the Swansea Canal and the former Mond Nickel Works.

County: Swansea

Town: Swansea

Community: Clydach

Community: Clydach

Built-Up Area: Swansea

Traditional County: Glamorgan

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Anglican parish church, now hall, built in 1847 to designs of William Whittington of Neath, County Surveyor, largely at the expense of the Miers family of Ynyspenllwch. When the new church of St Mary was built it became the Welsh church. Converted to a parish centre 1994, interior fittings mostly removed apart from stained glass all apparently by the firm of Ward & Hughes and its successors 1870-1910.


Church now hall, Pennant sandstone in coursed squared rubble with sandstone ashlar and tooled dressings and slate roof with coped shouldered gables. Raised plinth. Nave and short lower chancel with large N transept (of equal height to nave) containing entrance facade with bellcote. N transept front has octagonal angle turrets with two moulded courses, at level of ends of gable string and gable coping, and finials with coved battlemented caps. Centre has coped gable with lower string course following line of coping, two long chamfered lancets and sandstone ashlar centrepiece with bellcote. Centrepiece is broadest and projected slightly further at base with chamfered pointed doorway with C20 panelled door. Stepped in with chamfered coping to narrower ashlar strip with chamfered lancet and chamfered angles, stepped in again at top of gable stringcourse to narrow piece with another string under gabled bellcote with cusped single opening to front and back, narrow side openings and stone gabled top. Gable string course is carried along sides of transept and along N sides of nave and chancel, and then follows gable line again at W and E ends. Transept has one lancet each side, nave has one lancet to each side of transept and stepped diagonal corner buttresses. Chancel has one very small lancet N and S, stepped triple lancet E with hoodmoulds, and small vent in apex under top of string course that follows line of gable coping. Central pointed arched recess for memorial slab to Miers family (formerly protected by cast-iron railings). Nave S has 4 large lancets with buttresses between and diagonal buttresses at corners. W end has stringcourse following gable coping, tall 2-light pointed window with quatrefoil in head, diagonal angle buttresses and ground floor lean-to, possibly added, with one lancet N, two to W divided by a C20 door opening, and blocked pointed doorway to S end.


Plastered interior with fittings mostly removed and C20 flooring. Roofs are arch-braced collar trusses with pierced spandrels, and wishbone struts above collars, resting on thin corbels. Moulded plaster cornices. Transept has painted grained gallery front of c1870 with cusped diagonal crosses in panels and large organ. C20 infill below organ gallery, c1847 stairs with stick balusters and turned newel to right of N entrance door. W end enclosed and altered in C20. Double pointed doors with cover strips from nave into W end, originally external, possibly reset. Short chancel has narrow pointed arch closed by C20 grill, rafter roof and 3-light E window.
Fittings: Seats and pulpit of 1873 removed, ashlar octagonal font possibly of 1847 remains. Brass eagle lectern 1909. Large later C19 organ in N transept gallery.
Stained glass: Chancel E 3-light Light of World, Ascension and Lamb of God, faded, probably by H. Hughes, 1870 to Elizabeth Miers (d 1869), small chancel side lights have angels and patterned quarries, c. 1870. W window c1870 similar to E window. Nave S first from W, Magnificat, 1902 by T.F. Curtis of Curtis, Ward & Hughes in line-engraving style, second 1883 Jesus in Temple by Ward & Hughes, third and fourth, Suffer the Children and Christ teaching, 1875 by H. Hughes. Nave N has first window, left of transept, Charity, c. 1905, by T.F. Curtis and second, Angel at Tomb, c1875 similar to S third and fourth, presumably by H. Hughes. In N transept E window is a reset piece, kneeling child c1880. Two N windows have coloured glass margins.
Memorials Nave E ornate Gothic memorial to Richard Hill Miers (1803-55), a marble plaque with flaming urn to E.M. Strick (d 1849) and family to 1861, by Rogers of Swansea. N wall oval marble plaque to RH Cox (d 1870) by Currie of London, S wall neo-Grec memorial to Llewellyn Llewellyn (d 1859) by Rogers of Swansea.

Reasons for Listing

Included primarily for its historic interest as a pre-Ecclesiological movement church going with the first phase of industry at Clydach.

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