Full Report for Listed Buildings

Summary Description of a Listed Buildings

Reference Number
Building Number
Date of Designation
Date of Amendment
Name of Property
St. Idloes Parish Church  


Unitary Authority
Street Side
At the NW edge of town. Churchyard to S and River Severn below to N.  


Broad Class
Religious, Ritual and Funerary  

Medieval Gothic church of considerable importance owing to its comprising elements of the former Cistercian abbey church of Abbey Cwmhir. Rectangular with tower and sanctuary projections to ends. C14 W tower; nave reconstruction in 1542 following the dissolution of the monastery and the earlier E window was transferred to the E wall of th N aisle added at that date. Restoration took place in early C18 and the S wall was rebuilt in 1816; the chancel was enlarged and the whole church restored in 1880-82 by G E Street. Modern extension by P G Harrison (1982).  

Rubble masonry with freestone dressings and voussoirs to windows. Slate roofs with tiled cresting, overhanging eaves and gable parapet and final to E end - also to porch. The square W tower, of typically Welsh border style, has stepped pyramidal roof with boarded belfry and louvred openings; similar openings under eaves to N and S. Weathervane to top; stringcourse, partly broken, and plinth over battered base; vice tower to NE angle. The plinth steps up over Perp W entrance with low acutely pointed arch and double boarded doors - 2-light double cusped window over. The main body of the church is 5 bays. The S side has Victorian stepped buttresses and gabled porch; 3-order arched doorway within, the jambs and filleted shafts of which were brought from Abbey Cwmhir. 2 windows to right in almost semi-circular headed openings with casement mouldings and - 3-light cusped tracery (probably dating from 1816). The S wall steps back slightly at eastern end with two 3-light ogee tracery windows, the left hand of which is segmental headed. Dressed quoins to E end containing 5 light window with transom and double cusping; 2-light window to chancel N side. N aisle has 3-light windows with plainer tracery, 3 are square headed. One doorway towards E end; octagonal; rubble chimney stack and steps to boiler room.  

The cement rendered interior is undivided from W to E and has full length, 19-bay hammerbeam roof dated 1542 marking its removal from Abbey Cwmhir. Moulded timber trusses and stone corbels (4 of which are foliage carved); carved figures with gilded angels to hammerbeams. Also from Abbey Cwmhir is the famous 5-bay arcade of ca 1200/1210 - an especially fine example of Early English work - stylistically akin to the West Country School of Masons. Compound piers with filleted triple shafting (except end piers); 6-order arches with deep hollows and variety of capital ornament - some stiff leaf and transitional type trumpets. As there was a somewhat irregular reconstruction of the capitals they follow no particular sequence of development and in some cases appear to be reset in reverse - the western bay is also slightly narrower. The bases are at varying levels (higher to E over sanctuary of earlier church) and mostly of vaguely waterholding type. To N of the arcade lies the aisle with screen of 1956 by Bernard Miller to Lady Chapel alter. High octopartite ribbed stone vault to tower chamber beyond pointed rubble arch with modern screen; a view of 1821 shows a raked gallery. Encaustic tile floor to chancel. Perp font C14 and Victorian pulpit etc; the reredos was designed by Clayton and Bell and Geoffrey Webb. Despite the dedication to St Idloes he was not a canonised saint, merely a religious leader.  

Reason for designation

Cadw : Full Report for Listed Buildings [ Records 1 of 1 ]