In Focus - St Martin's Chuch, Cwmyoy near Abergavenny

We are continuing our mini series on one of the unsung features of all our Welsh Overland Safari’s; the various church’s and chapels we pass (and often stop and visit whilst out and about in the “luxury” mini bus)!

Image source: www.megalithic.co.uk/

Image source: www.megalithic.co.uk/

The second Church we have chosen to feature is St Martin’s Church in Cwmyoy near Abergavenny titled the “Leaning Tower of The Black Mountain"s” and can be visited on our Eastern Beacons tour!

The Church was built on ancient landslide which slide just after the last ice age approximately 12,000 years ago! Even after thousands of years to compact it wasn’t quite long enough!

The Church was built on loose ground approximately in 1156 and according the Brecon Beacons National Park website “Local tradition says the landslide was caused by a terrible earthquake during Christ’s crucifixion, when there was darkness over the whole land and, according to St Matthew's gospel, the veil of the temple was torn in two”

Whatever the cause for the unique shape (no part of it being square or at right angles with any other part) Richard Davies founder and tour guide for Welsh Overland Safari call’s it Mid Wales’ very our Leaning Tower of Pisa!

It is believed St Martin's dates back to the Middle Ages and contains a medieval cross, thought to have been one of the crosses of the Pilgrims' Way to St David's. It is situated on The Cistercian Way, a long distance walk into the heart of Wales (source Brecon Beacons).

Pictures really do not do this unique church justice and it really does need to be seen to be believed!

Andrew Williams