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Church of St John

A Grade II Listed Building in Disserth and Trecoed (Dyserth a Thre-coed), Powys

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Latitude: 52.177 / 52°10'37"N

Longitude: -3.4232 / 3°25'23"W

OS Eastings: 302780

OS Northings: 254143

OS Grid: SO027541

Mapcode National: GBR YM.4ZHF

Mapcode Global: VH69S.MK50

Entry Name: Church of St John

Listing Date: 29 November 2004

Last Amended: 29 November 2004

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 83346

Location: In a churchyard on the W side of the road, 0.9km N of Builth Road station.

County: Powys

Community: Disserth and Trecoed (Dyserth a Thre-coed)

Community: Disserth and Trecoed

Locality: Cwmbach Llechryd

Traditional County: Radnorshire

Find accommodation in
Builth Wells


Built in 1887 by J.B. Fowler, architect of Brecon. The patron was Miss Clara Thomas of Llwyn Madoc, Breconshire, and Pencerrig, who dedicated the church to the memory of her mother, also Clara Thomas (d 1877), as recorded on an inscription in the W wall.


An Early English style parish church comprising nave with S porch, and slightly narrower chancel with higher eaves line, of thinly coursed rock-faced stone, freestone dressings and quoins, and tile roofs with overhanging eaves, behind coped gables on moulded kneelers. A prominent stone spirelet at the E end of the nave stands on a hipped freestone triple bellcote with pointed bell openings between ringed shafts and below a foliage cornice. The spirelet has cusped openings to each vertical facet, and chevron and quatrefoil banding.

The nave and chancel have a battered base below a freestone band. The porch is set back from the W end. Its doorway has 2 orders of half shafts, stiff-leaf capitals, and a pointed arch with hood mould and head stops. Above the doorway is a string course and niche with hood mould. The E and W walls have 2-light square-headed windows with cusped lights. To the R of the porch the nave has a single and 2 pairs of cusped lights under hood moulds with head stops. A broad stepped buttress at the E end of the nave incorporates a plain pointed niche. The chancel has lofty proportions, accentuated by the falling ground level and the sills of the chancel windows at a higher level than in the nave. A string course is below sill level. The S wall has 4 lancets with hood moulds, of which the R-hand is shorter, with a higher sill. The E wall comprises 3 stepped lancets with shafts and hood moulds. A single lancet on the N side has a hood mould and foliage stops. To the R of the window is the gabled vestry and organ chamber, which has a 5-bay blind arcade, incorporating 2 lancets, in its N wall, and on the W side a stack with tall octagonal shaft above the buttress at the E end of the nave. The nave N wall has 3 pairs of cusped lights, with hood moulds and foliage stops. The W wall has a 5-light window with bar tracery, hood mould and head stops. A commemorative inscription is on the plinth band.


The porch is ashlar faced to the interior. The pointed nave doorway has ringed nook shafts with stiff-leaf capitals, hood mould and head stops. Italian wrought iron gates in front of the nave door were installed in 1909 (recorded on a commemorative inscription in the door jamb).

The main interior is also ashlar faced. Nave windows have shafted rere arches. The nave has a 6-bay arched-brace roof, with foliage bosses at the foot of each principal, arcading above the wall plate and stone foliage cornice. The deep chancel arch has arched panels and ringed shafts to E and W faces, with stiff-leaf capitals, and hood mould with head stops to the W side only. The chancel is more richly treated. Windows have rere arches with marble shafts and hood moulds. The roof, of 4½ bays, has pointed arched braces on corbels, wooden foliage cornice and diagonal boarding which, over the altar, is enriched with cusping. On the N side of the chancel is a 2-centred arch dying into the imposts, to the organ chamber. Of 2 N windows, one is blind. The E wall has a marble reredos. It has a blind arcade on short marble shafts of various hues, except immediately behind the altar where there is a ledge and a gold mosaic adorned with flowers and the legend 'Alleluia'. Above is a foliage frieze and foliage cornice below the sill of the E window. The S side has sedilia in a window embrasure, on the L side of which is a marble shaft supporting the corner of a piscina with projecting bowl and cusped arch. The chancel and sanctuary are laid with encaustic tiles.

The ornate round font has a freestone bowl with foliage friezes in relief, and marble panels of various hews. A central and 4 detached marble shafts have foliage capitals and cusped arches. The wooden cover has radiating panels with quatrefoils. At the W end of the nave is a Gothic panelled screen to the vestry. The polygonal pulpit has a freestone base, front with stylised Gothic panels, and oak-leaf frieze to the cornice. Behind the pulpit are iron railings with a brass hand rail. The choir stalls have panelled fronts, the backs of the first tier are also panelled, and the stall ends have foliage. Communion rails are brass.

Several windows have stained glass. The E window, probably of 1887 and by Burlison and Grylls, depicts the crucifixion. N and S chancel windows have angels playing musical instruments. The nave W window (possibly also by Burlison and Grylls) depicts New Testament scenes. The remaining windows have C20 glass, mostly conservative in style. In the S wall of the nave, beginning at the E end, are Christ with his disciples on the Sea of Galilee (post 1913), SS Christopher and Nicholas (post 1950) and St Stephen (post 1903). On the N side, beginning at the W end, are a deathbed scene (dated 1908), the Good Centurion and St Barnabus (post 1947) and the parable of the sheep and goats (post 1942). Porch windows are post 1929 and depict SS Agnes and Cecilia in the W wall, SS Margaret and Susanna in the E wall.

Reasons for Listing

Listed for its special architectural interest as a Gothic Revival church of definite quality and character.

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