History and Heritage

The Expansion of Holy Trinity Church

In 1862 a fundraising fair was held to raise money to extend the church, and this was carried out soon afterwards, increasing the seating capacity and the facilities available there. A large celebratory service was held in July 1864 to formally reopen the church aftrer the expansions, including dinner parties at the home of Mr and Mrs J. Palmer Budd.

Holy Trinity was repaired and extensively enlarged in 1864 as the original church had been designed in the simplest early English style as a Chapel of Ease in the old Parish of Llangiwg, before Ystalyfera became a separate parish in the early part of this century (1903).

The Wern School Log Books contains an entry dated 26th July 1864 which states that Trinity Church Ystalyfera was reopened after the enlargements and improvements.

The Cambrian ran an article dated 29th July 1864 entitled YSTALYFERA RE-OPENING of TRINITY CHURCH:

In the 11th July 1862 edition of 'The Cambrian' notice was given of a fundraising fair to be held at the home of J. Palmer Budd to raise money for the extension of and repairs to Holy Trinity Church, Ystalyfera

Fancy Fair at Ystalyfera
will be held (D.V.) in the
Grounds of Ynisydaren
The Residence of J. Palmer Budd, Esq.,
on Wednesday and Thursday, August 13 and 14, 1862
In aid of a Fund for the Enlargement and Repairs of
The Fancy Fair will commence at Twelve o'clock

Admission, from Twelve to Five o'clock, One Shilling; from Five to Eight o'clock, Sixpence.
Children under twelve years of age half-price.

Refreshments may be procured on the Grounds.

Mrs. Palmer Budd will feel greatly indebted for Contributions of Fancy Articles for Sales, sent to Ynisydaren with the prices affixed, on or before Satuurday, August 9th. Refreshments, Fruit, Plants and Flowers will be thankfully receivved on the Mornings of the Sale.

The Swansea Vale Railway Company have in addition to their ordinary trains arrranged for Special Trains to leave Swansea for Ystalyfera at 11:30a.m. and 3.0p.m., calling at all stations, returning from Ystalyfera at 4.0p.m. and 7.30p.m.

Tickets at reduced fares, avvailable for all trains, including admission to the grounds, will be issued at all stations.

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Holy Trinity Church reopened with a celebratory service on Tuesday 26th July 1864. This article from 'The Cambrian' describes the scenes:

After the morning service a party of between 70 and 80 persons, friends and visitors, partook of an elegant dejeuner at Ynis-y-daren, the residence of Mr and Mrs Palmer Budd, whose beautiful grounds were thrown open on the occasion. We noticed among the company:- Mrs and Miss Gough, of Yniscedwyn House, Mrs Marryatt, the Rev. Mr Welby and Mrs Welby, Mrs P. St Leger Grenfell, and the Misses Grenfell, the Misses Llewellyn, of Baglan, Mr Morgan and niece, Mr and Mrs Gilbertson and family, Mr and Mrs W. Price and family, Mr and Miss Struve and Miss Mackworth, Dr and Mrs Howelll, Mrs C. Bath, the Mayor of Swansea (Mr Bath), Mrs Edward Thomas and daughters, Mr Milford of London, the Rev. Mr Jones, Mrs andd Miss Jones of Bishopston, Capt. Phipps, R.N., and many others, with a large attendance of the neighbouring clergy and their wives.

After the concluding evening services we understand a supper was given at Ynis-y-daren to Mr Lloyd, the organist, and the choir, to whose indefatigable services and exertions through the day, so much of the success may be attributed.

Too much credit cannot be given to Mr Newton, the works' manager of the Yniscedwyn Iron Company, who, although not a professed architect, designed and carried out the whole of the additons and alterations in his best taste and keeping.

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The Cambrian ran an article dated 29th July 1864 entitled

According to public announcement this beautifully situated church was re-opened for divine service, after a thorough repair and extensive enlargement, on Tuesday 26th inst. The weather, which had been for a few days unsettled, cleared up, and was everything that could be desired, the recent rains having left an agreeable freshness combined with a pleasant summer temperature. A special train left Swansea at 9.45am arriving at Ynisgeinon station, near the church, at 10.40am.

The addition of a north and south transept and an enlarged chancel, meant that Holy Trinity had been converted into a cruciform building, ornamented with a splendid east window of coloured glass. This window as well as the window at the end of each transept, and four side windows all of coloured glass, were the gift of Mrs. Palmer Budd, who, with the assistance of some young lady friends, designed and executed this beautiful work by the new process of DIAPHANIE.

The floor of the chancel was covered with encaustic tiles of an appropriate ecclesiastical design: on the altar cloth, which is of crimson cloth, is embroidered a simple cross, in very pure taste, the super frontal being ornamented with the fleur de lis- this we understand, is the work of Miss Annie Lancaster, a cousin of Mrs. Palmer Budd. The hanging over the pulpit is the gift of Miss Rawson, a sister of Mrs. Budd and is also beautifully worked with symbols of the Holy Trinity, to whom the church has been dedicated.

The amount of the accommodation in the church had been nearly doubled.

On 4th August 1864 a concert was held in the evening for the benefit of the Church Organ* Fund, when a debt of £30 was cleared.

* According to the organ restoration fundraising in 1970, the organ was a Walker organ, built in 1726.

The Restoration of Holy Trinity Church

In 1913, substantial funds were raised for restoration work at Holy Trinity Church, Ystalyfera. The article below comes from the Labour Voice newspaper, 26th July 1913:-


The bazaar promoted for the purpose of raising funds to defray the expense of restoring Holy Trinity Church, Ystalyfera, was continued on Saturday, and over £30 was taken. At the opening ceremony on Thursday last Master H. Jones, son of the Vicar, presented Mrs Gough, who opened the bazaar, with a beautiful bouquet of sweet peas and maiden hair fern. Mrs Gough generously accepted the same, and thanked the little donor.
The total amount raised in connected with the two days' proceedings was over £200, of which £182 1s. 6 and a half d was taken at the various stalls. Following are the takings at each stall:-

Cheques were received from friends unable to attend the Bazaar, and those amounts bring up the total to over £200 but the whole of the proceeds of the bazaar are not yet to hand.


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