SO3164 : St Andrew's Church, Presteigne

taken 1 year ago, near to Presteigne, Powys, Great Britain

St Andrew's Church, Presteigne
St Andrew's Church, Presteigne
It is believed that the original foundation may have been a minster or mother church established by the Bishop of Hereford in the 8th or 9th century. This view is supported by the 12th century version of the town's name - Presthemede - which means 'household of priests'. The Welsh name, Llanandras, is also of ecclesiastical origin. The current ecclesiastical parish covers over 11,000 acres on both sides of the border which is thought to more or less correspond with the area served by the original minster.

The modern church is within the Diocese of Hereford and not therefore part of the Church in Wales.

Church of St Andrew, Presteigne
An impressive church, befitting a town which was an important local centre and later a county town where Assizes were held.

It consists of nave with north and south aisles, chancel with Lady Chapel on the south side as an extension of the south aisle and tower at the south western corner.

There are traces of pre-Conquest structure in the eastern part of the north aisle wall, this church being sacked and burnt in the 11th century by Gruffydd ap Llewellyn. A post-Conquest church was rebuilt on the same site incorporating the remains. This comprised the traditional aisleless nave and chancel. The first stage of expansion came in the 12th century when the nave was extended westwards to its present length and a separate tower built.

Major expansion occurred in the first half of the 13th century when the current nave was built, with north and south aisles. The north wall of the north aisle included the existing Norman nave wall, but the arcade was sited roughly down the middle. An extended chancel, aligned with the new nave, was built at the same time. The south aisle was built up to the tower.

The last major stage of construction occurred between roughly 1460 and 1520. This involved widening and raising the south aisle, the rebuilding of the chancel and the erection of a new Lady Chapel. The widening of the aisle effectively incorporated the tower into the body of the church.

Three periods of restoration, in 1854-5, 1889-91 and 1927-8 brought renewal of the fabric, but not substantive change to any of the medieval work. As usual much of the furnishing was renewed, including for example the chancel screen by Pearson in 1889-91.

There are a number of interesting wall monuments in the church, but pride of place has to go to the Flemish tapestry in the north aisle. This depicts the entry of Christ into Jerusalem and dates from around 1510. It was gifted to the church in 1737 by Richard Owen.

The church is Listed Grade I.
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SO3164, 284 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Saturday, 22 July, 2017   (more nearby)
Wednesday, 26 July, 2017
Geographical Context
Religious sites 
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SO 3155 6455 [10m precision]
WGS84: 52:16.4892N 3:0.2783W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SO 3156 6452
View Direction
North-northwest (about 337 degrees)
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Image Type (about): geograph 
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