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Monmouth Group of Parishes - History of St Michaels and All Angels


History of St Michaels and All Angels

The name Mitchel Troy is derived from the Welsh name Llanfihangel Troddi which means St Michael by the Trothy. The River Trothy rises in Glen Trothy, three miles east of Llanvihangel Crucorney, then wanders mostly south to pass a field north of the church before flowing into the Wye a mile below Troy House. On the opposite wall is a stained glass window and brass plate to the Revd. Everett, who supervised the restoration. The architect was John Pritchard, the Diocesan architect, who with his partner, JP Sneddon, restored Llandaff Cathedral. Outside at the base of the tower is a stone inscribed 'Orate Peo Godfride et Johanne' which is said to be a foundation stone. Members of the Beaufort family were officers of the church in the 19th century. Henry George Talbot was vicar 1825-67; he was the son of the Dean of Salisbury and was married to the daughter of the 5th Duke. He was succeeded by Boscawen Somerset, 1867-74.

INSIDE THE CHURCH

The elaborate font, decorated with netted fish and water lilies, was installed at the reconstruction and is to the left of the South door. To the right is the old Norman font which was found in the Rectory shrubbery some years ago.

There are some interesting stone corbels. On the south wall is an otter with a fish it has just caught. In the middle of the north wall are some flowers and to the right of the entrance to the organ chamber are some wheat and hops. On the outside of the organ chamber five decorations show: an owl, a daffodil, a hawk or kestrel, a flower and a nest of small birds being fed by their mother. Above the nave the corbels are alternately the Beaufort device (a portcullis) and the Cross of St George (at the time of the reconstruction the church belonged to the Church of England).

At the reconstruction an ancient stone altar was found buried at the end of the South aisle. It was in two pieces, of different stone. The five consecration crosses representing the five wounds of Christ were also of two different styles. The slab was remounted under the East window of the South aisle to serve as an altar for the Lady Chapel. Under it is a rather decayed old tombstone which was brought into the church in an attempt to preserve it. It was to Philip Stead, churchwarden in 1723; it read:

Life is unsartin
and death is shuer
sin is the wound
Christ is the cuer.

Also found was a stone which had been used as a piscina but when turned over was found to be the lid of a child's coffin of early date. This has now been set in the wall of the South aisle.

At the end of the North aisle is a black marble slab incised with a reproduction of the Last Supper by Michaelangelo. It has been crudely mounted in an old communion table.

In 1876 on the choir stalls were erected carved figures of angels playing musical instruments, presumably taken from Psalm 150. Unfortunately these were stolen in March, 1995. They have now been replaced by finials depicting oak, ash, holly, ivy, hawthorn and bramble, carved by John Nethercott and Co. of Hereford and Presteigne.

In the tower are three ancient bells. They are inscribed:

1. G Tyler: H Williams: C Warden EE 1710
2. CACHMAI: Tyler: William: Tucker: Churchwarden 1656
3. Wm Robinson Rector: Phil Stead: Ch Warden EE WE 1723.

The second bell is interesting as it dates from the Commonwealth when the rector had been elected and the church was served by John Hardwicke whose tomb, inscribed 'preacher of God's word' lay on the South side of the chancel.

STAINED GLASS

Opposite the entrance is a window to the Revd Everett. In balanced positions in the North and South aisle are windows to the two army Lieuts. Trower who died in the South African wars. Nearby is a brass plaque to Lt CJ Trower, RN who also died in South Africa.

At the West end of the Chancel are windows to the wife and daughter of the Revd Talbot.

The East Window represents the Ascension.

In the South wall is a window to the wife of the Revd. Sneyd, who gave the Lady Chapel in memory of his son.

At the West end is a window to General EH Somerset, of the Beaufort family, who died in 1886. Nearby are plaques to his son and daughter who died in 1866 and 1883.

OUTSIDE THE CHURCH

The lych gate is roofed in graded stone.

There is a churchyard cross, probably of the 15th century, which is missing the cross and top. It is decorated with ball flowers which are repeated on the pulpit and reredos.

In the spring the churchyard is rich in flowers - snowdrops, primroses, crocus, wood anenomes, daffodils, cowslips, marguerites, red campions, sweet violets, herb robert, lilac, clover.

FF 1996