St. David's Priory, Swansea

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Parochial registers 1808-1982, including registers of baptisms 1808-1910; nominal index to register of baptisms 1805-1950; registers of marriages 1840-1956; nominal index to marriage registers 1930-1982; register of burials 1859-1870; register of sick calls 1915-1965 (lacking entries for 1945-1949).

Pastoral Council records c1966-1981; church service records 1862-1982; financial records 1876-1973; church fabric records c1808-1960; pre-nuptial enquiry records 1948-1972; legal miscellanea 1828-1933; parochial memoranda and miscellanea, (including material relating to the history of the Roman Catholic Church in Swansea and South Wales) c1808-1985; St. David's School records 1855-c1983; material relating to St. Joseph's Church, Greenhill 1870-1945; material relating to St. Illtyd's Church and School, Danygraig c1870-1953; material relating to the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes, Townhill 1925; material relating to St. Benedicts Church, Sketty 1921-1936; miscellaneous material 1838-1932.

Administrative / Biographical History

St. David's Priory is the oldest Roman Catholic church in Swansea. It replaced an earlier church building which had been established c1808. Father Charles Kavanagh (d 1856) built the new church of St. David's in 1847 as well as the Catholic school adjoining St. David's. St. David's was enlarged and in 1864 a new presbytery was built. Most of the parishioners came from the Greenhill area and it became essential to build a church there and in 1866 St. Joseph's church opened.

In 1873 the parish was taken over by the monastic Order of Saint Benedict, and St. David's Church was elevated to the status of a Missionary Priory. In 1875 St. Joseph's became an independent Mission and a larger new church was opened in 1888. Today the mission is divided into two districts, St. David's which is responsible for Catholics in the area south of Croft and Thomas Street and St. Joseph's which is responsible for the Catholics north of this line.

The records in this archive consist of the early registers, church records of the parish and schools and a number of items relating to the history of the Roman Catholic Church in Swansea and South Wales. There is also material relating to other Roman Catholic parishes in the city, all originally daughter churches of St. David's.

Conditions Governing Access

Please contact the Archivist at Swansea University regarding access to this collection.

Accessible to all researchers by appointment. Please note that somecollections contain sensitive information and access may be restricted.

Corporate Names