Newchurch / Eglwys Newydd Ar Y Cefn

Extract from Kelly's Directory of Monmouthshire & South Wales, 1895.
Transcribed by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2011

NEWCHURCH EAST and WEST together form a parish anciently known as "Eglwys-newydd-ar-y-Cefn" and now include the chapelry of Devauden, in the Southern division of the county, upper division of the hundred of Caldicot, petty sessional division and union of Chepstow, rural deanery of Netherwent (eastern division), archdeaconry of Monmouth, and diocese of Llandaff. East Newchurch is in the county court district of Chepstow and West Newchurch in that of Usk. The parish, which is intersected by the road from Chepstow to Usk, is 5½ miles north-west from the Chepstow and 7½ south-east from Usk stations, on the Great Western railway. The church, occupying a bleak elevation on the northern side of the parish, is a building of stone, repaired in 1865; it is in the Early English style, and consists of chancel, nave, south porch and a western tower containing 1 bell; the Decorated east window is stained; the church has been thoroughly modernized, but presents no features of interest; there are 100 sittings. The register of baptisms and burials dates from the year 1710; marriages, 1755. The living is a vicarage, net yearly value £186, with two acres of glebe and residence, in the gift of the Duke of Beaufort K.G. and held since 1895 by the Rev. Charles Matthew Perkins jun. of Chichester College.

The chapel of ease in Devauden is a plain building with a belfry containing 1 bell and has an endowment of yearly, which is in the gift of and is at present held by the vicar of Newchurch. There are chapels for Wesleyan Methodists at Pen-y-cae-mawr, at the Glyn, at Devauden and for Welsh Methodists at Gaerlwydd. Devauden, anciently Ddefawdon, two miles north-east from the parish church, is said to have been the place where the Britons were overwhelmed and utterly defeated by the combined forces of the Saxon monarchs, Ethelbad of Mercia and Cuthred of Wessex, in 743. Various Roman coins of Antoninus and others were found at Devauden green in 1840. There is a fine cromlech at Gaer-llwyd. In this parish there is a very extensive British camp, known as Gaer-fawr - the great fortification - occupying a position of great natural strength upon the spur of a hill; this camp has an outer and inner vellum of stones and earth and extends over nearly twenty acres. Chepstow Park, a wood of about 3,000 acres, is near here, in which is a reservoir for the Chepstow waterworks.

A considerable portion of the extensive wooded district, all that now remains of the ancient forest of Wentwood, is in Newchurch West and here are the ruins of the Castle of Troggy, or Cas Troggy, so called from the rivulet of that name, which has its source near the castle. The ascription of the name of Strigul by Camden and some other writers to this castle has doubtless arisen from a corruption of the name of Cas Troggy or Stroggy, and has given rise to much confusion between this place and the real Strigul or Chepstow. Troggy Castle is said to have been built in the reign of Edward I. by Roger Bigod, Earl of Norfolk. The Duke of Beaufort K.G., P.C. is lord of the manor, impropriator and principal landowner. The soil is team and sand; subsoil, gravel and sandstone grit. The chief crops are grain and roots. The area is, Newchurch East, 3,396 acres; rateable value, £2,078; and the population in 1891 was 393; Newchurch West, 2,098 acres; rateable value, £917; the population in 1891 was 139.

Post Office. Mrs. Alice E. Light, sub-postmistress. Letters through Chepstow, arrive at 9 a.m.; dispatched 5.50 p.m. Shirenewton is the nearest money order office, & nearest telegraph office at St. Aryans

Wall Letter Box at Newchurch West, cleared at 4.25 p.m

A School Board of 5 members was formed 11 Dec. 1874 for the United districts of East and West Newchurch, Kilgwrrwg & Wolves Newton; Thomas Williams, Gaerlwydd, Newchurch West, clerk to the board & attendance officer

Board School, Devauden green, rebuilt with house for master in 1879, at a cost of about £500, for 200 children; average attendance, 50; Edwin Ellis Peters, master

The endowment of the former schools is now applied to purposes connected with the present schools; both the chapel & former endowed school were first established mainly through the exertions of James Davies, then village schoolmaster, the story of whose untiring zeal in the cause of religion & education has been more than once published

Perkins Rev. Charles Matthew jun. Vicarage, Devauden
Smedley Walter, Gaer Hill house

Arthur Adam, farmer, Newhouse frm
Bevan James, farmer, Glyn
Dowle William, carpenter, Devauden
Ferneyhough Johu, farmer, Panta frm
Francis Jn. miller (water), Panta mill
James William, farmer, Coedclivas
Jenkins Jn. farmer, Lower Glyn frm
Morgan Charles (exors. of), farmers, Necks farm
Morgan Mary (Mrs.), Mason's Arms P.H. Devauden
Morris Ann (Mrs.), farmr. Pen-y-park
Nicholas William, farmer, Upper Glyn
Nichols Mary Ann (Mrs.), farmer
Pritchard Thomas, fanner, Tydu frm
Remnant William, farmer, Coedclivas
Roberts John, farmer, Hill farm
Thomas James, farmer & shoe maker, The Trap
Watkins John, farmer, Trout farm
Williams David, farmr. Low. Veddw
Woodward Jacob, blacksmth. Devauden

Jones Cuthbert Lewis
Birden John, farmer, Priory farm
Davis -, farm bailiff to Thos. Jones esq
Harris Danl. farmer, Blackbird farm
Harris Daniel, farmer, Blue Bell farm
Hayward James, farmer, Wentwood
Morgan John, farmer, Gethley farm
Price George, farmer, Folley farm
Price George, farmer, Wentwood
Price Jacob, farmer, Wentwood
Price Jas. farmer, New mill
Reece John, Fox & Hounds P.H
Reece Eliza (Mrs.), farmer
Reece Wm. farmer, Newchurch house
Roberts Thos. farmer, Craigamaster
Roper Wm. Hy. frmr. Red House frm
Smith Robert John, farmer
Williams John & William, farmers, Tredegar farm
Williams Thomas, farmer & assistant overseer, & clerk to the school board for the united districts of East & West Newchurch, Kilgwrrwg & Wolves-Newton, Gaerlwydd
[Kelly's Directory of Monmouthshire & South Wales, 1895]

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