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Cwmyoy & Llanthony including Bwlch Trewyn

(A description written in 1891)

A Parish in the Ewias Valley, with lofty hills on either side, watered by the river Honddu, along the western bank of which is the high road to Abergavenny, 7 miles north from Abergavenny and 3 west from Pandy station on the Newport, Abergavenny & Hereford section of the Great Western railway; The parish is nearly 8 miles long and only 1 mile broad; in the Northern division of the county, Hundred of Abergavenny. Petty Sessional division, Union and County Court District of Abergavenny; north-western division of Abergavenny rural deanery, Monmouth archdeaconry and Llandaff diocese.

LlanthonyPriory1799BLprint1The church of St Martin is an ancient building of stone* in the Gothic Style, consisting of chancel, nave, south porch and an embattled western tower containing 6 bells dating from 1672; the church was completely restored in 1886 at a cost of £1,000, collected by subscriptions: there are 250 sittings. The register dates from the year 1708. The living is a vicarage, with Llanthony Abbey, gross yearly value £68, in the gift of John Morgan Esq. and held since 1855 by the Rev. Lewis Lewis B.D. of St David's College, Lampeter, Rev. George Guise Lewis, curate. Parish Clerk of St Martin: John Gunter.

* after St Martin's church was built, the hillside on which it stood was subject to land-slip, resulting in the foundations of the little church moving and the whole structure twisting on various planes. Buttresses were added to prevent further movement, [JD]

Baptist Chapel - Rev. TT Phillips, minister. [Registers for Cwmyoy & Capel-y-Ffin Baptist Church with Tabernacle (and their branches) Baptisms 1843-1886, Burials 1811-1848]

LLANTHONY ABBEY, a very extensive monastic ruin, stands in the Vale of Ewias, 4.1/2 miles north and 12 miles from Abergavenny, at the base of the Hatterall Hills and near the Black Mountains; it was founded by Hugh de Lacy in 1108 for canons of the Augustine Order, and was dedicated to SS. Mary, John the Baptist, and Florence: the remains include two western towers, of Early English date, portions of a nave of eight bays, 172 by 48 feet high and 50 wide, a central tower, once 100 feet high, transept, 100 by 31 feet, and a choir and presbytery, 72 by 28 feet, with lateral chapels: the whole length is 252 feet; the sacristy on the east side, and the vaulted undercroft of the guest house on the west side of the cloister garth, are also extant: in 1136 the Abbey became a cell to the New Abbey of Llanthony in Gloucestershire, to which its bells and library were transferred. At the Dissolution there were five canons, and yearly revenues worth £99.

MscStGregorytheGreatCaerleonLlantarnamAbbey1The church of St David, a portion of the ruins of the ancient abbey, is annexed to the living of Cymyoy: it is a building of stone in the Gothic style, consisting of chancel and nave, with a western turret containing one bell: there are 100 sittings, all free. Clerk of St David's: John Cullum


Letters, through Abergavenny, arrive at 9 a.m. The nearest money order & telegraph office is at Llanvihangel Crucorney. Wall letter box at the Vicarage, cleared at 8 p.m.


A School Board of five members was formed in 1897 for Lower Cymyoy;

B E Hodgens, Abergavenny, clerk to the board;

David Thomas, Llangattock Lincoed, attendance officer.

Board School, Cwmyoy (mixed), for 60 children, average attendance 35; Anthony Stephens, master

National School, Llanthony Abbey, for 40 children; average attendance, 25; Isaac Rowley, master

Jeremiah Lilburn Rosher Esq. and Walter Savage Landor Esq., eldest son of the well-known author, are lords of the manor, and with the Rev. E A Ely J.P., are the principal landowners. The soil is light loam, subsoil, stone. The land is chiefly pasture.

The area is:

Cwmyoy Upper, 4,720 ares of land and 20 of water; Cwmyoy Lower, 34,181 acres of land and 26 of water; rateable value, £3,922;

The population in 1881 was 400.


BWLCH TREWYN, 1.1/2 miles south-east and FWTHOG, 2 miles north-north-west, are Hamlets in this parish of Cwmyoy, the latter (Fwthog) is situated in the adjoining county of Hereford; In the Hamlet of Bwlch Trewyn stands Trewyn House, a noble mansion, the seat of Major-General William Augustus Gillespie D.L., J.P. The rateable value of Bwlch Trewyn is £742;

The population in 1881 was 76.



Llanthony engraving c.1799 - courtesy of & © The British Library

Manuscript of St Gregory the Great c.1190 - courtesy of & © The British Library

(extracts from Kelly's 1891 Directory of Monmouthshire, transcribed by J. Doe)

St Martins Church, Cwmyoy
St Martins Church, Cwmyoy





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