ST David’s Church in Blaenporth has received a £10,000 National Churches Trust community grant for its project to develop the interior as a community space.

The community space is much-needed as there is no other public building in the village.

The church is one of 54 churches and chapels in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland that are set to benefit from rescue funding of £310,060 from the National Churches Trust, the UK’s church support charity.

St David’s Church will reorder the interior of the church, including removal of pews to create a less restrictive space, installation of toilets, improvements to the kitchen, and connection to the mains water supply.

Currently water has to be carried into the church every week. The heating and lighting will also be upgraded so they are more efficient.

The church will be able to offer activities for groups of all ages, reaching out to the elderly and isolated and also young families as there is no public play area for children in the village. IT facilities will also provide opportunities to upskill members of the community.

Huw Edwards, broadcaster and journalist and vice-president of the National Churches Trust said: “At the heart of communities in cities, towns and villages, churches are a treasure trove of architecture, history and faith.

“I’m delighted that St David’s Church, Blaenporth, will remain at the centre of the local community with the help of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant.”

“This will help ensure the future of this historic church, which stands on a site where there has been a place of worship since before 1066.”

Dedicated to the Celtic saint St David, there has been a religious site at Blaenporth since before 1066. The first building would have been made of wood, wattle, and plaster. There are close links to Gruffydd ap Rhys in the 12th century.

The present building is from 1865, a Victorian Grade II listed building. It is a very good example of the work of RJ Withers.

Alban Thomas, curate from 1722-1740, was the author of one of the first books to be published by the first permanent printed press in Wales, at Adpar, Newcastle Emlyn. He appears in the Dictionary of Welsh Biography

The church is on the pilgrimage trail to St David’s Cathedral.