Elevated between Ffosyffin to the south and Aberaeron to the north, the approach to the church from the main A487 road, is through a large Lychgate with a tiled roof, built in English style in 1930
This church, once the site of a monastery, is identified in the earliest Life of
St David as the scene of the infancy and early education of St David (Dewi Sant),
the patron saint of Wales.
In 1833 Samuel Lewis (A Topographical Dictionary of Wales) described Henfynyw as:
This parish, which is washed on one side by the waves of the fine bay of Cardigan, in St. George's channel, is separated from the parish of Llandewy Aberarth by the powerful stream of the Aêron It is intersected by the turnpike road from Cardigan to Aberystwith, and the neighbourhood is characterized by that varied and strikingly bold scenery which prevails on this part of the Welsh coast.
This parish contains the small but flourishing sea-port town of Aberaêron which, within the last few years, has attained a considerable degree of commercial importance.
The church, dedicated to St. David, is a neat plain edifice, consisting only of a nave and chancel, situated in a remarkably large cemetery. A school-room was built by the late Rev. Alban Thomas Jones Gwynne, of Tyglyn, in which the children of the parish are instructed on the National system, partly by subscription, and partly at the expense of their parents.'
The church was rebuilt between 1864 and
1866 to its present state.
The name Hênfynyw signifies literally 'Old Menevia' and there is a tradition that the cathedral of St. David's was originally designed to have been erected here. Near the church is a spring, still called Fynnon Ddewi, or 'St. David's Well' and this parish is distinguished as the place where that saint was brought up from his infancy. You can learn more about St. David here.
Points of interest to the visitor include:
Nave and chancel,
Simple altar rails,
Stained glass East window (1922).