TWO churches are celebrating after winning prestigious awards.

Holy Trinity Church in Trefnant, part of the Denbigh Mission Area, and St Peter’s Church in Llanbedr Dyffryn Clwyd, near Ruthin, both secured accolades in the National Church Awards 2023.

Holy Trinity Church was the Wales winner in The Church and Community Volunteer Awards. These celebrate the contribution which volunteers make to both looking after and making best use of churches to benefit local communities and people.

St Peter’s Church, part of the Dyffryn Clwyd Mission Area, was the country winner in the Church Tourism Awards, which encourages churches to be open and welcoming for visitors to explore.

Representatives of both churches were at the award ceremony at The Mercers Hall in London on November 6. They were presented with their award by actor and comedian Hugh Dennis.

Revd Rebecca Sparey-Taylor, The Mission Area Leader of Denbigh, was joined by Ann Bowers to collect the award on behalf of Holy Trinity Trefnant.

Rev Rebecca said: “We are delighted to receive this award. It is a real validation of all the hard work put in by members of the congregation in Trefnant, who are always warm, engaging and welcoming. The team make a big difference to the church and are having a growing impact on the community.

"We submitted our application based on Prayers and Bears, which started as a service, crafts, toys and coffee morning for babies who had been born in the village during Covid and who had never seen anyone outside of their own families. We now regularly see more than 25 children. We run a book club, a youth group, hold village events and collect for the local foodbank."

St Peter’s recently re-opened after a re-ordering project to make the space more flexible and install a kitchen area and toilets. Outside the church, there is an outdoor chapel and labyrinth for visitors to explore in their own time.

The award to St Peter’s was collected by the Mission Area Leader of Dyffryn Clwyd, the Revd Huw Bryant, along with Gwenda Williams and Myron Lloyd.

Rev Huw said: “This is the second of the Dyffryn Clwyd Mission Area churches to receive an award. Last year, St Saeran Church in Llanynys was awarded for being open to visitors. It’s good to know our hard work is being recognised.


“Being open is more than just having the door unlocked. Being open is a state of mind, a way of being, a theology and the heart of the gospel we proclaim. Strangely it took being locked during the pandemic for us to discover this and now we could never close the door again.

"The church is never closed; the door is always open and fresh coffee and cakes available whenever you like. The churchyard is managed for wildflowers with secluded spaces, plenty of seating and even a lavender planted labyrinth."

On Saturday, November 18, St Peter’s will be open from 10am – 12noon, the local school will be holding its Christmas Fayre.  

Both churches will be open on Saturday, November 18 to show off their award and explain more about what they do.

Earlier this year, St Peter’s became the first church in Wales to be awarded a Gold Eco-Church award.