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Review of the Tod Handley Concert, Saturday 13 September 2014

Patrons:

The Lord Lieutenant of Gwent

Simon Boyle D.L.

Sara Fulgoni

Robert McAdam

Jean Prosser

Sir Roy Strong

Boo and Oliver Vaughan

For over 800 years the castle and church have stood 100 metres apart from each other on the Welsh bank of the River Monnow at the crossing in Skenfrith. When the powerful Justiciar toKing John and later to Henry III, Lord Hubert de Burgh was first Lord of Skenfrith, he extended the castle and its defences and at the same time enlarged the church.  A cleric was first appointed to Skenfrith in 1207.

 

St. Briudget's is a large church with seven roofs and also eight windows original to its building; only one window, the  s. aisle w, has been replaced. The north aisle constructed from large sandstone blocks with five generous windows was built out i th eearly fourteenth century and the south aisle added about 50 or so years later. The north vestry chapel  and the south porch are probably late mediaeval. At the Restoration of the Monarchy, work was done to repair the church which was recorded in the south aisle and on the font. Further repairs to the nave and chancel roofs were carried out in 1896 and repairs in 1909-10 retained all the old red sandstone dressings. No major remodelling of the church was done between 1663 and 1909.

 

A mediaeval church which escaped a Victorian makeover with visible remnants of its history; the steps of the rood stair, the reading desk made from elements of the screen, the reformation font, pieces of mediaeval coloured glass in the east window, the partly restored wall paintings, the memorials throughout and the pre-reformation cope in its new display case set off the quest for more information.

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