James Pantefedwyn Foundation

01970 612806post@jamespantyfedwen.cymru

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St Cybi Church, Holyhead

St Cybi Church is a Grade 1 listed building in the middle of Holyhead.  There has been a religious community on the site since St Cybi founded one in about 540. The church is pleased to announce that its £250,000 Restoration is now complete.  Urgent repairs were identified in 2016, and after grant funding was secured, work started in 2019, but due to the Covid Pandemic completion of the work has taken longer than planned.

The main focus of the restoration has been the preservation of the carvings on the south side of the church.  These date from the 16th century and have, over the centuries, suffered from erosion and pollution.  The important carvings have been carefully and sympathetically cleaned and covered in a special protective layer to reduce, as far as possible, further damage. These carvings contain an eclectic group of images from Angels to mythical beasts, symbolic of thinking of the time. The Mythical beasts include an amphisbaena, a beast with a head at the end of its tail.  Amongst the powers associated with the creature was the ability to assure a safe pregnancy, at a time when childbirth had many hazards.

Whilst stonemasons were on site the opportunity was taken to repair the windows in the South Porch, something that was very long overdue.  It was during the occupation of the church by Oliver Cromwell’s troops in the 1650’s that the windows were smashed.  The windows have now been repaired and glazed and new, bespoke, glass doors fitted, making the approach to the church far more attractive.

None of this work would have been possible without the generous help of many grant-giving bodies, including The National Lottery Heritage Fund, The Garfield Weston Foundation, The James Pantyfedwen Foundation, the Allchurches Trust, The W G Roberts Fund and The Representative Body of the Church in Wales.  The church is very grateful for their help and support throughout the restoration.