Building Name

St Lawrence, Pembrokeshire

Pembrokeshire, Wales
Grade II
T and J Lloyd, Haverfordwest

ST. LAWRENCE, PEMBROKESHIRE - The above picturesquely-situated church was re-opened by the Bishop of St. David’s on the 28th of February, after a complete restoration. The plan is rectangular, consisting of a nave, 30 ft. by 17 ft.; chancel, 21 ft. by 11 ft. ; and south porch, 8 ft. by 7 ft. The north nave wall and the upper portion of the east wall of the chancel have been pulled down and rebuilt ; the former, of more recent date than the other walls, had been erected with inferior materials badly bonded together: it therefore leaned very considerably, and when the roof was removed was in some danger of falling. These works were not included in the general contract, as it was hoped all rebuilding might have been avoided, the desire being of course to preserve as much of the old work as possible. The only new masonry is in the upper portion of the western double-bell gablet and the five new windows. The old windows were of the ordinary unhung-sash description, fit only for the cottage homes, and as unfortunately not a trace could be found of the original ones, the style of the chancel and porch arches, which seemed to indicate the date of the church at about the fourteenth century, has been selected for the new work. The font, which was found huddled up in the north-western comer of the nave, is now placed on a new base on the west side of the entrance. A considerable improvement, both as to appearance and comfort, has been obtained by lowering and altering the slope of the footpath approach commencing at the road, thus enabling the original level of the floor and the internal height of the walls to be retained, and the stops down into the porch to bo done away with. This lowering of the footpath has revealed the original proportions of the porch ; and the nave walls, which were considerably underground, have been likewise unearthed, giving the sacred fabric a more imposing appearance, and at the same time securing it from damp, a channel, with drains below, having been formed round the walls. A bed of concrete, with a similar object, has been laid over the whole internal area. The porch and nave passages have been paved with elate, having Staffordshire tile borders to the latter, the chancel and sacrarium floors being laid with "Webb’s (Worcester) encaustic tiles, a portion of those in the latter being glazed. There were traces on the east side of the chancel arch apparently of a rood-loft staircase on the north side, and of a hagioscope on the south side ; both of these have been left untouched, a remark that also applies to the ceiling of the porch, its outer and inner arched entrances, and the chancel arch. These, with the font, were unfortunately the sole features of antiquarian interest remaining. The roofs were of comparatively modem date, and have been constantly out of repair, and devoid of all architectural worth. They have been replaced by new ones of pitch-pine. The number of worshippers now provided for in comfortable open pitch-pine seats on raised wooden platforms is 77; previously, the accommodation was for only 55. It was found necessary to plaster the inside and point the outside of the walls generally, on account of the roughness of the old work. The architect was Mr. E. H. Lingen Barker, and the builders were Messrs. T. and J. Lloyd, of Haverfordwest. [Builder 23 March 1878 page 304]