A WELSH language church once used by a prominent author is celebrating its 150th anniversary.
Bethesda Chapel on New Street, Mold, is to hold a festival of song on Sunday to commemorate its landmark birthday and the opening of the church doors for the very first time.
The Presbyterian church, which is also a Grade II listed building, was previously used by renowned Mold author Daniel Owen, who preached at the church in 1879, prior to penning his most famous novel, Rhys Lewis, in 1885.
He was encouraged to write by the minister of the chapel, the Rev Roger Edwards.
Enid Young, of Hendre Road, Mold, has been a member of the church since she moved to the town from Scotland for work in 1991.
She said: “The church is quite a special place to me.
“I’ve had a lot of support from friends in the church since I moved here.
“My Christian faith is important to me and it is important to be able to have somewhere where I can worship in Welsh.
“The church has a very busy Sunday school service and is important to all who visit.”
The chapel was constructed in 1863 by London architect W W Gyther on the site of an earlier chapel that had stood since 1819.
The current chapel boasts an impressive pipe organ that has stood inside since 1906 after local businessmen helped to fund its construction.
Church members celebrated the laying of its foundation stone on the site in June last year and will commemorate this year’s event with an evening of songs.
A hymn singing festival, or Cymanfa Ganu in Welsh, will take place at the chapel from 6pm and will be televised on Welsh language channel S4C’s dedicated spiritual and church music programme, Dechrau Canu Dechrau Canmol (Start singing, start praising).
Cardiff-based choral conductor Alun Guy will lead the hymns.
Church pastor Rev Huw Powell-Davies, of Ruthin Road, Mold, said: “My wife and I came in 2000 from Bala and things have certainly changed since then.
“I’m glad of the team we’ve got here and that they work well for the benefit of Mold and the wider community.”