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Church of St Mary, Llanfair-yn-Cwmwd

Street Name and Number: ,
Listed Building Reference: 5513
Grade: II*
Date Listed: 30/01/1968
Date Amended: 19/10/1998
Co-ordinates: 244702,366764
Locality: Dwyran
Community: Rhosyr
Council: Isle of Anglesey
National Park: No

Set within an enclosed churchyard, set back from the NW side of a country lane running NE from the A4080; c1.2km NE of the Church of St Ceinwen and c1km N of Dwyran.

Probably C15: Medieval walls with C16 mullions inserted in nave windows and late C16 or early C17 roof trusses. The interior was refitted, probably in the mid C19, at a time when many of the old churches of the island were being renovated or rebuilt.

The church has a roof of 7 bays with exposed rafters and collared trusses; arched collars with chamfered soffits. Chancel is raised by one step and divided from the nave by a C19 tall wooden screen of 3 bays; lower part with central wrought-iron gates flanked by tongued and grooved panels under a quatrefoil-pierced frieze and moulded rail. The upper part is raised by plain wooden piers; a plain frieze painted with the word SANCT to each bay under a moulded rail, chamfered brackets below with pierced spandrels. The sanctuary is raised by one step and altar base by a further step, both with encaustic tiling. Hung on the N chancel wall is a mid C13 coffin lid, adorned by a cross carved in low relief with richly floriate head and stem. At the rear of the church is a C12 font with an irregular oval bowl rising from a roughly rectangular base. The bowl has a flattened rim decorated with a rough zig-zag pattern and 3 sides are decorated with an expanded arm cross (4th side defaced). The base has a human head in relief at each corner and another in the centre of one side, flanked by crosses. On E and S faces is a serpent, the latter face with incised chevron below. Cable moulding running round the top of the base which continues on S side as a zig-zag band. Nave has C19 and C20 memorials; S wall with slate memorial plaque to Elizabeth, wife of William Humphreys of Sychant, co. Caernarvon, d.1780. Bell with inscription + THIS BEL WAS CAST IN THE YER OF OWER LORD GOD WDLXXXII and above 4 stamps, a fleur de lys and the letters AMN repeated 3 times.

A simple rectangular Medieval church, with chancel and nave structurally undivided. Walls of local rubble with sandstone dressings. Slate roof with single rubble-built bellcote with slate capping at W gable end. N wall has entrance through round-headed arched doorway at W end, and paired segmental-headed leaded lights towards the centre. S wall has 2 windows of paired leaded lights, that to W end with round heads, that to E with segmental heads. Chancel window is of paired trefoil headed lights.

Reason for Listing
The church is a good example of a simple, substantially unaltered, late Medieval church. During the C19 twenty seven of the old churches on Anglesey were re-built and most of rest were restored and refitted, therefore the Church of St Mary can be considered an important survival.

RCAHM Inventory, 1937, p74.