An Abbey and Two Churches

On our quick trip to North Wales we managed squeeze in an abbey and two churches.

Basingwerk Abbey is in the ancient town of Holywell. Established in 1131 it is now a ruin but much remains of the original buildings. Unlike many ruined abbeys, Basingwerk is now in a built-up area and is very popular with local residents - a far cry from the peace and quiet we usually enjoy at ruins!

From Holywell we made our way to St Dyfnog’s church in Llanrhaeadr. We visited last summer but - thanks to Covid - it was locked, so we could only enjoy the exterior. This time is was open so we could fully appreciate its beauty.

The current building dates from the 13th century

Ornate ceiling above the altar

The Jesse Window
The Tree of Jesse window illustrates the family tree of Jesus back to Jesse. It was completed in 1533 and is said to be the best glass window in Wales, and better than most in England.

From St Dyfnog we drove a few miles to St Saeran’s church at Llanynys. Also 13th century, the church is noted for its huge 15th century wall painting of St Christopher. It was rediscovered in 1967, having been concealed beneath plaster for an unknown time.

Exterior of church

The ancient door

Wall hanging dated 1661, marking the restoration of the monarchy

Depiction of St Saeran, probably the head of an ancient cross

15th century wall painting of St Christoph
Graffiti on the 16th century door