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Site Details

NPRN 43855

Map Reference SJ04SE

Grid Reference SJ0649743892

Unitary (Local) Authority Denbighshire

Old County Merioneth

Community Corwen

Type of Site CHAPEL

Broad Class Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Period Post Medieval

Site Description The Chapel of Holy Trinity at Rug was built in 1637 as a private place of worship for the wealthy landowner and royalist governor, Colonel William Salusbury. The Salusburys had been recusants in the sixteenth century, yet its deed of endowment, 1641, stipulates the rites of the Church of England. The chapel, together with its grounds, is a Scheduled Ancient Monument. The exterior details date largely from Sir Robert Vaughan’s restoration of 1854-5, during which the windows and bell tower were remodelled. However, this chapel is rare in being one of the few Anglican churches whose fixtures and fittings survived the Victorian Gothic revival of the 1840s; the original ‘high church’ interior survives virtually untouched, including a carved and painted hammer beam roof with original colour, coloured dado panelling, and original wooden chandelier hanging from the central truss.

The chapel is a Grade I listed building. There are contemporary canopied pews either side of the altar; the altar itself and tiled sanctuary were installed in the late nineteenth or early twentieth centuries, however. The pews in the remainder of the church are original seventeenth century constructions joined together at their bases by a scalloped plinth which is richly carved with beasts and birds; these were widened and provided with backs in 1854-5. The screen which divides the chancel from the nave dates from the restoration of 1854-5, but was designed in a Neo-Jacobean style and coloured in similar fashion to the original woodwork. Towards the northeast of the nave is an unusual seventeenth century wall-painting displaying emblems of death with apposite inscriptions in Latin and Welsh.

Sources include:
Yates, W. Nigel. (2005) Rug Chapel, Llangar Chruch, Gwydir Uchaf Chapel & Derwen Churchyard Cross: Cadw Guide (Revised Edition)

K Steele, RCAHMW, 4 November 2008

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