Ancient Monuments

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Runston Medieval Village Site & Runston Chapel

A Scheduled Monument in Mathern (Matharn), Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

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Latitude: 51.6204 / 51°37'13"N

Longitude: -2.7295 / 2°43'46"W

OS Eastings: 349594

OS Northings: 191540

OS Grid: ST495915

Mapcode National: GBR JK.9053

Mapcode Global: VH87S.MJXN

Entry Name: Runston Medieval Village Site & Runston Chapel

Scheduled Date: 9 February 1948

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 588

Cadw Legacy ID: MM095

Schedule Class: Religious, Ritual and Funerary

Category: Chapel

Period: Medieval

County: Monmouthshire (Sir Fynwy)

Community: Mathern (Matharn)

Traditional County: Monmouthshire


The monument comprises the remains of earthworks, platforms and building footings, representing a deserted village, of probable medieval date, and the remains of a small chapel. The chapel survives as a roofless ruin comprising the chancel and nave with a bell tower at the west end. The chancel arch survives intact, with the wall above and the eastern wall standing to their original height. The chapel retains significant architectural details, including finely jointed ashlar blocks in the chancel arch and small romanesque windows, which point to a construction date in the early 12th century. Documentary sources reveal that the chapel was built by the Normans shortly after their conquest of south-east Wales, however reference is made to the presence of a village on the site as early as the 10th century. The remains of the village can be seen to the south and east of the chapel as turf-covered banks, 0.5m to 1m high, some with stones exposed on them. In the centre of the site these banks delineate roughly rectangular areas, corresponding to the layout of houses, while on the edge of the settement the linear banks are probably the remains of field boundaries. Running east/west across the centre of the site is a narrow hollow way, which curves to the north at its eastern end. The village is known to have been deserted in the 18th century.

The deserted village remains are of national importance for their potential to enhance our knowledge of medieval settlement, while the chapel is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of the organisation and practice of medieval Christianity. The monuments form an important element within the wider medieval context and the scheduled area may be expected to contain a wide range of archaeological information, including chronological detail and evidence in regard to construction techniques, agricultural methods, chronology and functional detail.

The scheduled area comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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