The Bishop’s Road

During the Middle Ages, the diocese of St Davids was the largest and richest in Wales, extending northwards into Powys and eastwards as far as Offa’s Dyke. It’s bishops were not only prominent in the church but also powerful in the affairs of state. As a reflection of their power and status, the bishops built on a grand scale and this pilgrimage route journeys from their castle at Llawhaden to their palace at St Davids.

The churches along the way vary in style, size, origin and location. Some are very simple with the nave, chancel and bellcote characteristic of north Pembrokeshire churches, while others – usually those within the area of Cymro-Norman settlement – show greater architectural elaboration, featuring towers, transepts, arcaded aisles, chapels and vaulting. Almost all of them show signs of extensive rebuilding and additions in the 19th and 20th centuries. However, evidence for their true antiquity is preserved in the dedications to early saints, holy wells, inscribed stones and ancient fonts.

Each one has a story to tell and point us back to an earlier age of faith.