Enter the Mystery


This Church of St Mary the Virgin on Bute Street was built in 1843, a response to the growth in population caused by the industrial expansion of Cardiff as it flexed its muscles on the back of steel and coal.

However, the parish of St Mary’s has existed since the twelfth century, and, inside the church, you’ll find the only remaining stonework – a corbel head from the 11th century priory church of St Mary which stood on the banks of the River Taff near the site which is now Central Station.

The stone corbel head from the original Norman priory church of St Mary when it was situated outdoors. It’s been relocated indoors now and looks rather more weathered than this fine figure in stone.

From the early eighteenth century no church building existed following the fall of the original Priory Church of St Mary, damaged by flood, civil war and neglect but the parish continued to exist with its own churchwardens and congregation, accommodated in the Church of St John the Baptist in the Hayes.

John Speed’s 17th century map showing the original St Mary’s Priory Church on the banks of the River Taff which was subsequently re-routed by Brunel in the nineteenth century

So come on in and discover more about the life and history of the Parish Church of St Mary the Virgin.

This QR Code Trail celebrates both our past and present. We are a diverse community of faith which offers a constant witness, serving the local community, and gathering each day for prayer and worship.

You’ll find many more QR Codes scattered throughout our grounds, including our Wild Side.

Longer Read: If you have time to linger and want to dig deeper check out our blog post: Articles of Faith: Stone Corbel Head

Inside the building, looking east. Beyond the apse are the gardens which front onto Bute Street
%d bloggers like this: