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Rectorial Benefice of Neath
© C L Evans for Rectorial Benefice of Neath
The Church of St. Illtyd
A Brief History The history of St Illtyd’s Church dates back to the time of the Saint himself. Illtyd was a 6th Century teacher and tradition has it that he used to retire during Lent to the banks of the River Nedd, at a point where the present church now stands. In the Norman period it was rebuilt in stone,apart from which very little is known of its development over the centuries until 1850, when it was decided to restore, repair and enlarge the building to the form in which we find it today. The Restoration Renovation was completed in 2003, the work was funded by grants from CADW and the Heritage Lottery Fund. The building has been restored to a point that would have been appropriate to the late 19th Century, with the Tower and East End completed in a lime wash finish. Internally, the building has been brought into the 20th Century with both mains water and electricity being provided. The original gas supply has been retained for the heating system, but safety constraints have dictated that the original gas mantles have been replaced by electric lighting. The acquisition of a small pipe organ has been necessitated following the removal and disposal of the original American Harmonium, which was badly affected by wet rot. The organ was commissioned and played for the first time on Sunday 20th July 2003. The restored church was rededicated by the Archbishop of Wales, the Right Reverend Dr. Barry Morgan on Tuesday 11th November 2003. Notable Features The present building consists of a porch, castleated tower, nave chancel and vestry. It is early English in style, modern of body but ancient at its extremities. A good example of a Norman aisle-less church. The two decker pulpit is the only one of its kind not only in the Diocese of Llandaff, but possibly in the province of Wales. The font is regarded as a fine example of Norman work. This "D" shaped font with its magnificent cable moulding is unique.
Services Sunday - 3.00 pm Eucharist. The church is available for Baptisms by arrangement with the Rector. Who’s Who Sub Warden: Philip Evans PCC member: Stephen Lewis