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Translation of page 9 in December 2017’s Town & Around on Efenechtyd Church

Efenechtyd Church second in the Holy Wales competition. Report by HAROLD JONES

In July 2017 a “Sacred Wales” competition was held by the National Churches Trust. The intention was to ask the public to vote for their favourite chapel or church in Wales.

The competition was launched by the broadcaster and journalist Huw Edwards, who is Vice President of “Sacred Wales—Cymru Sanctaidd”.

The winner of the competition was Capel y Tabernacl, Morriston, Swansea with 7,081 people voting. Morriston Tabernacle Chapel, a Grade I listed building, was designed by the Welshman and architect John Humphreys. It opened in 1870 and cost £ 18,000 to build—a huge sum at that time.

The chapel belongs to the Union of Welsh Independents and is a magnificent building that has been called the “Nonconformity Cathedral”. There were 50 entries in the competition including Llandaff Cathedral, St Asaph Cathedral, St Dyfnog’s Church, Llanrhaeadr and Y Tabernacl, Ruthin.

Of particular interest to us in Ruthin and District is the fact that St Michael’s and All Angels Church, Efenechtyd, came second with 4,498 votes. This church was open to the public on the 9th and 10th of September this year as part of the Ruthin and District Open Doors programme.
The Grade II* listed building is first recorded in 1253. The features of the building include the old entrance door with the original door catch, hinges and knob. The 16th-century roof wood and also a English Gothic eastern window (1290 – 1350) restored in 1984 at Ruthin Craft Centre. Inside the church are very early drawings on a wall, interesting remains and a unique wooden font.

Holy Wales says that there is a real feeling of history in this small church. It is believed to have started as a monastic community. In the outside cemetery there is a tree and may be older than the church itself.

Third in the competition was Eglwys y Grog, Mwnt, Ceredigion with 1,884 votes. More on the competition and for the 50 churches and chapels can be found at www.sacredwales.org.uk.