St Michael’s Church

Please visit the official web site of St. Michael’s Church
by clicking on the photograph below

St. Michael’s Church

Church Warden

Mr. Roland Ward

Tel: 07777 – 614104

The St. Michael’s Parish Church, Caerwys: is an example of the “Clwydian” type of architecture. It has no definitely apportioned aisles and chancel, but two adjacent parallel naves. Many churches in the Vale of Clwyd are of this type. There has probably been a religious building on the site since the Roman era, but the present structure dates from the close of the 13th century, although there have been many additions and modifications over the years.

St Michael’s Church – Renovations 2017

‘In September, 2017 St Michael’s Church was renovated. The photographs at the bottom of this web site page, show the church before the renovation.

The repairs to the plasterwork, the windows, the flooring and the roof will maintain the integrity of this ancient building for a generation.

We have also taken the opportunity to adapt the church for 21st century worship and community use. As a result of this project, the church will be warmer, people will sit in more comfort, they will be able to hear better, and to see what is going on more clearly.

There is now a new toilet and a kitchen area. No more searching for the Portaloo in the churchyard, or going out to the tap outside for water to fill the kettle.

The chancel is now an open area, and the low wooden screen that was placed there in 1905 has been relocated along the North wall. In the chancel the Rector will lead services, choirs will sing, and nativity plays will be performed, all in clear sight of those seated in both naves.

The old wooden floors have been sanded and sealed, and the lighting has been vastly improved. The aim of this has been to highlight the memorials, the windows, the altar and the carvings which make the church such a beautiful heritage site. The carpet has been removed to reveal  beautiful Victorian tiling, which has been carefully restored.

All this work has been possible because of the  immense generosity of members of the St Michael’s Church congregation, the St Asaph Diocese, and of the following grant-awarding bodies:

The Heritage Lottery Fund, The National Churches Trust, The Garfield Weston Foundation, The James Pantyfedwen Foundation, The Maude Yeardye Trust, and The All churches Trust.

We have counted our blessings throughout the project.

The work has been undertaken by Gareth Williams Joinery, a local firm who specialise in work in ancient churches. Their own tradespeople and their sub-contractors have proved skilful, and sensitive to the need to get the detail right. They have gone out their way to restore the church sympathetically.  Robin Wolley, the Project Architect is amongst the most experienced and talented  conservation architects. He has overseen it with care and imagination.

The North Nave: There are two wall monuments in this nave, one to Rev. John Lloyd (Rector) and another dated 1702. Facing the organ are two large 18th century stone tablets bearing the ten commandments. On the North Wall, facing the Chancel is a 17th century picture of the Royal Coat of Arms.

South Nave and Chancel: The view from the west door gives an impression of strength and dignity. Wall monuments include two 18th century and one 19th century gravestones, a brass tablet to the memory of Pte. Spry, killed in South Africa in 1901, and a brass war memorial to “those who fell for King and Country, 1914-1918.” There is also a memorial to those killed in the 1939-45 war, together with a monument to Rev. Thos. Lewis, a curate at Caerwys (died Oct. 30, 1757, aged 47) and another to Thos. Mostyn (died 10th July, 1751, aged 59). A remembrance book is on display, and contains mementoes of Caerwys men who gave their lives in the service of their country. An interesting list of past clergy is on display near the vestry.

The Font dates from 1661: and the adjacent stone panelling is also 17th century. The organ and font cover were erected by public subscription in 1910.The beams above this nave are particularly well preserved and a good example of workmanship from the early perpendicular period

The North East window: consisting of five lights and representing the Ascension of Our Lord, was given in 1924 in memory of Alfred Evans and Thos Jones, both of Caerwys. The two other windows in the North Nave comprise a stained glass window representing the Nunc Dimittis, erected in 1920, and a venerable plain glass window dating from the time when plain glass was the norm in churches and cathedrals. Above the altar is a five-light window depicting a comprehensive scene of the Crucifixion. Tracery lights contain angels holding instruments of the Passion and three representing faith, hope and love. It was unveiled in 1928 in memory of A E Lewis, cousin of the late Sir J H Lewis, M P of Penucha. The Reredos (ornamental screen at the back of the altar) was given by the Rev. J Sinnett-Jones in memory of his two sons and son-law, all killed in the Great War. It is of carved oak and depicts St Paul, Melchizedek and St. John.The panelling around the church, and the pulpit, date from the 17th century, and consist of wood recycled from old pews. The oak credence table was given to the church in 1928 in memory of the Rev. Thos. Lloyd Bell, a native of Caerwys who ministered in Aberdeen.

Records and Artefacts

There is a substantial collection of pictures and photographs relating to the history of the church and its incumbents. Church registers date from 1675. Sacred vessels date from the early 18th century. All these can be viewed by arrangement with the Rector.

St. Michael’s Church Tower

The tower, as far as the ridge below the clock is 13th century work, although it is possible that the base of the structure contains stones from a much earlier building. The bell chamber was added during the latter half of the 17th century and house four bells, three comparatively new, but the fourth is a 700 year old “Sanctus Bell” bearing the inscription “Tradis Campenani” (Thou Teachest, O Little Bell).There is a sanctuary ring in the tower door, one of only two in Wales.
In the belfry is a box of bibles, each one bearing the following note:- “This book belongs to Caerwys Church, John Lloyd, Rector, 1792. Printed by his Majesty’s special command”. The clock in the tower was installed, as a result of public subscription, in 1915. It commemorates Bishop Rowland Ellis, 1840 – 1911, who was born in Caerwys.

Plaque to Commemorate the building of St. Michael’s Porch in 1904