ADMINISTRATION: St Mary's Parish Church, St Mary's Priory, Abergavenny
St Mary's Priory Church serves as a parish church for the town and community of Abergavenny and encompasses a significant part of the rural Coldbrook estate, stretching from the ancient Llanellen Bridge, to the south, to the top of the Sugar Loaf mountain. It is part of an Incumbancy wihich also includes St Peter's, Llanwenarth and Holy Trinity Abergavenny, which itself is part of the Greater Abergavenny Ministry Area.
There is a daughter church, Christchurch, in North Street, serving the western parts of the parish. This was built in the latter half of the 18th Century with the generosity of the Nevill Family, the Marquesses of Abergavenny, who once lived at Nevill Hall, now the district hospital.
Christchurch was built as an iron church, and was then wood-clad. It has a belfry and spire and has been carefully restored in recent years.
St Mary's Priory Church, Abergavenny is one of several ancient Benedictine foundations in the Diocese.
At the foundation of the new diocese some thought was given to St Mary's Priory Church becoming the Cathedral Church, with the attraction of a fine Priory house (demolished c.1952), adjoining land and facilities.
When can I visit the church?
You can, of course, visit the church for any one of our services, which are held every day – please see Worship - Service dates.
The church is open every day for visitors to view our fine monuments or sit in quiet contemplation.
Opening times are Monday to Saturday 9am to 4.30pm.
There is no charge, although St Mary’s does cost £400 per day to run so any voluntary contribution would be very gratefully received.
You can also bring a group to visit St Mary’s, please e-mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org
The Church in Wales
In 1919 the Church of England was disestablished in Wales, partly to assert national identity. It was replaced the following year by the Church in Wales, which is both independent of the state and an independent member of the Anglican Communion.
The Church in Wales is split into six dioceses – Llandaff, St David’s, Bangor, St Asaph, Swansea and Brecon, and Monmouth. The Archbishop is the Most Reverend Barry Morgan. The Bishop of Monmouth is Rt Revd Richard Pain.
The Diocese of Monmouth
The Diocese of Monmouth covers the south east corner of Wales, from Monmouth south to Chepstow, westwards along the M4 corridor to Newport and the outskirts of Cardiff, northwards into the south eastern valleys and east into the rural areas around Usk, Raglan, Abergavenny, and the Herefordshire border – what was, in fact, the ancient county of Monmouth.
It is made up of two geographical archdeaconeries – Monmouth and Newport - and a number of Rural Deaneries, including Abergavenny. Our Vicar is the Area Dean of Abergavenny.
The Cathedral church of the Diocese of Monmouth is in Newport, the main centre of population for the area. It is one of the most ancient buildings in Wales, with a history stretching back into early Celtic history. Its fine Galilee Chapel and stunning Romanesque Nave lead on to a 20th century choir and sanctuary. This is a fine rose window and dorsal painting by John Piper.
The Cathedral, previously known as St Woolos Cathedral but now as Newport Cathedral, is governed by the Dean and Chapter of Canons, made up of parochial clergy from within the diocese. Our Vicar is one of those Canons.
The Dean is the Very Revd Lister Tonge.