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A brief history of Llanymynech  Parish Church

St. Agatha’s Church, Llanymynech, Shropshire.

The church is dedicated to St Agatha and is in England, just inside the national border. The church was part of the diocese of St Asaph but after the ballot of 1915 became part of Lichfield.

The architect for the church was Thomas Penson the younger - a member of a dynasty of  architects. The foundation stone for the church was laid in 1843 following the demolition of the previous building. The building has been described as: 'A crazy demonstration of the neo-Norman fashion’. The main structure is of local limestone with columns/pillars/cylinders and other ornamental work in terra cotta.

View from church hall. NOTE clock on tower.

Llany church West Door

The West door, shown above, illustrates the  use of terracotta in arches, columns and human heads. Note that some of the cylinders have been replaced.

The human heads over the West door have been said to be the Princess, later Queen, Victoria, the Rector, the architect and the churchwardens.
All seven heads are shown below.
Click on one to see larger image
When on larger image, click arrows to scroll through all seven larger images.

1 head one

2 head two

3 head three

4 head four

5 head five

6 head six

7 head seven



South facing view

Note replaced columns


Main West door

replaced terra cotta column





Many of the original external terra cotta columns had to be replaced because the original ones had failed. Because this became a regular occurrence, when Tony Villiers was rector he bought a stock of replacement columns. These are stored in the old bier [not beer] house. It has been said that these columns have an inner core of steel rods. These rods were not evident in the replacement columns [See photos below].

Much was done to restore and conserve the building in the 1970’s and 1980’s. These endeavours were energetically led by the rector of the time, Tony Villiers. When all this work was completed there was an earthquake in 1990 which caused significant structural damage. One result of this was the weights which operated the tower clock could not travel their original path and caught against the realigned walls.

Spare terra cotta columns stored in the bier house

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