'Like stars in the firmament'
It is believed that a Christian community has been established on this site since at least the 8th century, when records show that Elfod, Bishop of Bangor, granted a gift of land to the church here. The site would originally have been home to a clas, a monastery and centre of learning for the early Celtic Church. No evidence of this original settlement survives.
In writings of the early 12th century, Gwynedd was said to be ‘bespangled with lime-washed churches, like the stars in the firmament'. The church at Abergele continued to be white-washed well into the 19th century.
The present building, which dates from the 14th century, is built from local limestone and sandstone. It has been extensively renovated over the years, but many features of the original building survive – including the lower part of the rood screen, the font pedestal, an oak chest and a large stone slab. In addition, several fragments of a 14th-century Jesse window, thought to have been destroyed during the Civil War, have been reset in the vestry window.
Standing outside the church is the so-called penitential stone. Here sinners were required to stand in penance, dressed in white, and beseech the congregation for mercy. The churchyard also houses a memorial to the 33 people killed in the Abergele Railway Disaster of 1868.
Abergele Parish Church
- Accessible by Public Transport
- Buggy Access
- Wheelchair Access
Check the parish church website
Exit off A55 to A458 into Abergele
Abergele - 1 mile
Market Street or Water Street
Near NCN 5 Coastal Path
Full Grid Reference: SH 945776
OS Landranger map sheet: 116
- 01745 827766
- St Michael's Church, Abergele, LL22 7AN