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St Asaph
St Asaph
(/sənt ˈæsəf/;[1] Welsh: Llanelwy [ɬanˈɛlʊɨ̯]) is a city[2] and community on the River Elwy
River Elwy
in Denbighshire, Wales. In the 2011 Census it had a population of 3,355[3] making it the second-smallest city in Britain. Historically part of Flintshire, the city of St Asaph
St Asaph
is surrounded by countryside and views of the Vale of Clwyd. It is situated close to a number of busy coastal towns such as Rhyl, Prestatyn, Abergele, Colwyn Bay and Llandudno. The historic castles of Denbigh
Denbigh
and Rhuddlan
Rhuddlan
are also nearby.

Contents

1 History 2 Community 3 Twinning 4 Festivities 5 Churches 6 Governance 7 Notable people 8 References

8.1 Notes 8.2 Bibliography

9 External links

History[edit] The earliest inhabitants of the vale of Elwy lived at the nearby Paleolithic
Paleolithic
site of Pontnewydd (Bontnewydd), which was excavated from 1978 by a team from the University of Wales, led by Dr Stephen Aldhouse Green. Teeth and part of a jawbone excavated in 1981 were dated to 225,000 years ago. This site is the most north-western site in Eurasia for remains of early hominids and is considered of international importance. Based on the morphology and age of the teeth, particularly the evidence of taurodontism, the teeth are believed to belong to a group of Neanderthals who hunted game in the vale of Elwy in an interglacial period.

Aerial view of the cathedral.

Later some historians postulate that the Roman fort of Varae sat on the site of the Cathedral. However, the city is believed to have developed around a 6th-century Celtic monastery founded by Saint Kentigern, and is now home to the small 14th century St Asaph Cathedral. This is dedicated to Saint Asaph
Saint Asaph
(also spelt in Welsh as Asaff), its second bishop. The Cathedral has had a chequered history. In the 13th century, the troops of Edward I of England
Edward I of England
burnt the cathedral almost to the ground, and in 1402 Owain Glyndŵr's troops went on the rampage, causing severe damage to the furnishings and fittings. Two hundred and fifty years later, during the Commonwealth, the building was used to house farm animals: pigs, cattle and horses.[4] The Laws in Wales
Wales
Act 1535 placed St Asaph
St Asaph
in Denbighshire. However, in 1542 St Asaph
St Asaph
was placed in Flintshire
Flintshire
for voting purposes. Between 1 April 1974 and 1 April 1996 it was part of non-metropolitan Clwyd. As the seat of an ancient cathedral and diocese, St Asaph
St Asaph
was historically regarded as a city, and the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica refers to it as a city on that basis; by the end of the 20th century the relationship between possessing a cathedral and automatic entitlement to city status had been broken, and the town was no longer regarded as a city. The town applied for restoration of city status in competitions held by the British government in 2000 (for the Millennium) and 2002 (Queen's Golden Jubilee) but was unsuccessful. In 2012 it again competed for city status during the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations. It was announced on 14 March 2012 that the application was successful, and city status was to be bestowed upon St Asaph alongside Chelmsford
Chelmsford
and Perth.[5][6] The status was formally granted by letters patent dated 1 June 2012.[7] Community[edit] Despite the previous lack of official city status, the community council had referred to itself as the City of St Asaph
St Asaph
Town Council. The local community is passionate about St Asaph's historic claim to be known as a city like its Welsh cousin St David's, which has led to a number of local businesses using 'City' as part of their business name. The city is promoted locally as the "City of Music". The past few decades have seen the local economy in St Asaph
St Asaph
thrive, first with the opening of the A55 road
A55 road
in 1970, which took east/west traffic away from the city, and, more recently, with a business park being built, attracting investment from home and overseas. The crowded roads in St Asaph
St Asaph
have been a hot political issue for many years. In recent years, increasing volumes of traffic on the A525, St Asaph High Street, which links A55 with the Clwyd
Clwyd
Valley, Denbigh
Denbigh
and Ruthin, have led to severe congestion in the city. This congestion is having a detrimental effect on the city, and residents have repeatedly called for a bypass to take this north/south road and its traffic away from the city, but the National Assembly for Wales
Wales
rejected these calls in 2004, presenting a further setback for residents campaigning on the issue. St Asaph
St Asaph
is now home to Ysgol Glan Clwyd, a Welsh medium secondary school that opened in Rhyl
Rhyl
in 1956 and moved to St Asaph
St Asaph
in 1969. It was the first Welsh medium secondary school in Wales. Twinning[edit] St Asaph
St Asaph
is twinned with the town of Bégard
Bégard
in Brittany, France. Both organise annual trips to the other for their residents. Festivities[edit] Every year the city hosts the North Wales
Wales
International Music Festival, which takes place at several venues in the city and attracts musicians and music lovers from all over Wales
Wales
and beyond. In past years, the main event in September at the cathedral has been covered on television by the BBC. Other annual events in the city include the increasingly popular Woodfest Wales
Wales
crafts festival in June, the Beat the Bounds charity walk in July and the Gala Day in August. Churches[edit] In addition to the Cathedral, there are five other churches in St Asaph covering all the major Christian denominations. The Parish Church of St Asaph
St Asaph
and St Kentigern (Church in Wales) is placed prominently at the bottom of the High Street, across the river in Lower Denbigh
Denbigh
Road is Penniel Chapel (Welsh Methodist) and halfway up the High Street there is Llanelwy Community Church (Baptist). At the top of the city, in Chester
Chester
Street is St Winifride's (Roman Catholic) and Bethlehem Chapel (Welsh Presbyterian) in Bronwylfa Square. Governance[edit] The City Council comprises two wards that both elect seven councillors.[8] The presiding officer and chairperson of the council is The Rt Wp The Mayor
Mayor
Cllr Colin Hardie.[8] Notable people[edit]

See Category:People from St Asaph

A number of famous people have strong links to St Asaph, having been born, raised, lived, worked or died in the city. These include: Richard Ian Cox, the Vancouver-based voice actor and online radio host; The Rev. William Morgan (later Lord Bishop
Bishop
of St Asaph), who translated the Bible into Welsh in 1588; The Most Rev. Dr Alfred George Edwards, Lord Bishop
Bishop
of St Asaph, who was elected the first Lord Archbishop of Wales
Wales
in the Church in Wales; comedian Greg Davies; singer Lisa Scott-Lee; composer William Mathias; former Wales
Wales
football captain Ian Rush; jockey David Harrison; the famous explorer and journalist Sir Henry Morton Stanley; Dic Aberdaron, who taught himself Latin
Latin
at the age of 11; Felicia Hemans
Felicia Hemans
(1793–1835), poet ("The boy stood on the burning deck"; her son, G. W. Hemans engineered the Vale of Clwyd
Clwyd
railway line through St Asaph);[9] and LET golfer Becky Brewerton. Another well-known individual, Geoffrey of Monmouth, served as Lord Bishop
Bishop
of St Asaph
St Asaph
from 1152 to 1155. However, due to war and unrest in Wales
Wales
at the time, he probably never set foot in his see. The current Aston Villa left-back, Wales
Wales
international and Team GB squad member Neil Taylor was also born in St Asaph. The hospital in the city (formerly the St Asaph
St Asaph
Union Workhouse) was named in honour of Sir Henry Morton Stanley; it closed in 2012. The city's hospice was named after Saint Kentigern. The original Welsh Bible is kept on public display in the city's cathedral.

Church of St Kentigern and St Asa

Church of St Kentigern and St Asa

Memorial to H. M. Stanley

War memorial

The Cathedral

References[edit] Notes[edit]

^ St Asaph—John Wells's phonetic blog, 15 March 2012. Retrieved 1 April 2012 ^ BBC News— St Asaph
St Asaph
in north Wales
Wales
named Diamond Jubilee city Retrieved 14 March 2012 ^ Office for National Statistics 2011 census - St. Asaph C ^ T. W. Pritchard St Asaph Cathedral
St Asaph Cathedral
Guidebooks ^ Official Llanelwy website ^ "Three towns win city status for Diamond Jubilee". BBC News. 14 March 2012. Retrieved 14 March 2012.  ^ "No. 60167". The London Gazette. 11 June 2012. p. 11125.  ^ a b Councillors ^ "George Willoughby Hemans". Grace's Guide. Retrieved 6 July 2017. 

Bibliography[edit]

T.W. Pritchard St Asaph Cathedral
St Asaph Cathedral
R J L Smith Much Wenlock (1997) ISBN 1-872665-91-8 Dr Chis Stringer Homo Brittanicus 319 pages, publisher: Allen Lane (5 October 2006) ISBN 0-7139-9795-8, ISBN 978-0-7139-9795-8

External links[edit]

Wikisource
Wikisource
has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica
1911 Encyclopædia Britannica
article St Asaph.

St Asaph
St Asaph
City Council St Asaph
St Asaph
(City Times) BBC St Asaph
St Asaph
page North Wales
Wales
International Music Festival www.geograph.co.uk : photos of St Asaph
St Asaph
and surrounding area

v t e

Denbighshire

Principal settlements

Corwen Denbigh Llangollen Prestatyn Rhuddlan Rhyl Ruthin St Asaph

Community councils

Aberwheeler Betws Gwerfil Goch Bodelwyddan Bodfari Bryneglwys Cefn Meiriadog Clocaenog Corwen Cwm Cyffylliog Cynwyd Denbigh Derwen Dyserth Efenechtyd Gwyddelwern Henllan Llanarmon-yn-Iâl Llanbedr Dyffryn Clwyd Llandegla Llandrillo Llandyrnog Llanelidan Llanfair Dyffryn Clwyd Llanferres Llangollen Llangynhafal Llanrhaeadr-yng-Nghinmeirch Llantysilio Llanynys Nantglyn Prestatyn Rhuddlan Rhyl Ruthin St Asaph Trefnant Tremeirchion Waen

Villages

Aberwheeler Berwyn Betws Gwerfil Goch Bodelwyddan Bodfari Bontuchel Bryneglwys Carrog Castell Cefnmeriadog Cerrigydrudion Clocaenog Clawddnewydd Crogen Cwm Cyffylliog Cynwyd Derwen Druid Dyserth Efenechtyd Gellifor Gellioedd Glasfryn Glyndyfrdwy Gronant Gwaenysgor Gwyddelwern Henllan Hirwaen Llanarmon-yn-Iâl Llanbedr-Dyffryn-Clwyd Llandegla Llandrillo Llandyrnog Llanefydd Llanelidan Llanferres Llanfwrog Llangar Llangwyfan Llangynhafal Llanrhaeadr-yng-Nghinmeirch Llansanffraid Glyndyfrdwy Llantysilio Llanychan Llanynys Llwynmawr Loggerheads Maerdy Meliden Nantglyn Prion Pwllglas Pentrecelyn Rhewl Rhuallt Saron Tafarn Y Gelyn Trefnant Tremeirchion

Oldest inhabited location

Bontnewydd Palaeolithic site

Moors

Berwyn range Mynydd Hiraethog

Topics

List of Parliamentary constituencies in Clwyd Schools Country houses SSSIs Scheduled Monuments Grade I listed buildings Grade II* listed buildings The historic county Lord Lieutenants High Sheriffs

v t e

Cities of the United Kingdom

England

Bath Birmingham Bradford Brighton and Hove Bristol Cambridge Canterbury Carlisle Chelmsford Chester Chichester Coventry Derby Durham Ely Exeter Gloucester Hereford Kingston upon Hull Lancaster Leeds Leicester Lichfield Lincoln Liverpool London Manchester Newcastle upon Tyne Norwich Nottingham Oxford Peterborough Plymouth Portsmouth Preston Ripon St Albans Salford Salisbury Sheffield Southampton Stoke-on-Trent Sunderland Truro Wakefield Wells Westminster Winchester Wolverhampton Worcester York

Scotland

Aberdeen Dundee Edinburgh Glasgow Inverness Perth Stirling

Wales

Bangor Cardiff Newport St Asaph St Davids Swansea

Northern Ireland

Armagh Belfast D

.