Cemais / Cemmaes

"CEMMES (CEMMAES), a parish in the hundred of MACHYNLLETH, county of MONTGOMERY, NORTH WALES, 7 miles (N. E. by E.) from Machynlleth, containing 917 inhabitants. The name of this place signifies a circle, or amphitheatre for games. The village is pleasantly situated on the southern bank of the river Dovey, and on the road from Welshpool to Machynlleth and Aberystwith, which, from a short distance north of it, runs parallel with the river for the remainder of its course. ... The church, dedicated to St. Tydecho, is in the early style of English architecture : the gallery is adorned with fine carvings of flowers, &c., in wood ; in the churchyard there are four large yew trees. There are places of worship for Independents and Calvinistic Methodists. ..." [A Topographical Dictionary of Wales by Samuel Lewis, 1833]



  • Willans, J B     The Mostyns of Dolycorsllwyn, Cemmaes         Collections historical & archaeological relating to Montgomeryshire   Vol 42  1932   Welsh Journals Online  


Victorian Powys for schools site - Census figures for Cemais parish 1841-1901


Church History

Church and chapel data from The Religious census of 1851 : A Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 11, North Wales. Ed. by Ieuan Gwynedd Jones, UWP,   1981. The names given towards the end of each entry are those of the informants.

Cemmes parish consisting of the townships of Brynuchel with Tafalog, and Gwernybwlch; statistics; Area 9247 acres; Population 426 males, 465 females, total 891

  • Brynuchel with Tafolog Township; Population ; 143 males, 162 females
  • Sammah, Independents      Erected 1819          Attendance - morning 83 scholars, afternoon 171, evening 160           Hugh Morgans, Independent Minister
  • Soar, Cemmes, Wesleyan Methodists            Erected 1836               Attendance - morning 18, afternoon 9 scholars, evening 12                 "There was a Society kept of the Wesleyan Methodists in this place since about 20 years before the erection of the chapel"         Richard Meredith, Second Class Leader
  • Gwernybwlch Township; Population 283 males, 303 females
  • Cemmes Parish Church               Attendance - morning 80 + 30 scholars, evening 70 + 25 scholars       Morning service in English, evening in Welsh                John Hughes, Rector
  • Cemmes Chapel, Calvinistic Methodist                Erected before 1800             Attendance - morning 103, afternoon 82 scholars, evening 235              William Jones, Deacon, Llwynhiraeth, Cemmes

Rees, Thomas & John Thomas Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru  (History of the Welsh Independent Churches), 4 volumes (published 1871+). The Sammah Chapel section (in Welsh) has been extracted  -  Translation by Maureen Saycell (Nov 2012)

Church of St Tydecho, Cemmaes on the Montgomeryshire Churches Survey site

Chapel in Cemmaes before it was renovated - on the People's Collection Wales site

Independent churches on the Montgomeryshire Genealogical Society site - Sammah

Calvinistic Methodist (Presbyterian) churches on the Montgomeryshire Genealogical Society site - Cemmaes


Church Records

Detailed information on deposited registers and transcripts for this parish is given on the Powys Archives page Montgomeryshire parish registers

As a guide only, the principal extant parochial church records for this parish span the dates shown below (as detailed in Parish Registers of Wales, NLW 2000) but exact current holdings should be confirmed with the individual Archives;

  • Baptisms 1711-1745, 1751-1927; Marriages 1711-1745, 1749-55, 1757-1970; Burials 1711-1745, 1749-1863; Banns 1823-1918
    Parish Registers, or copies, for all or part of these dates are held at the NLW, and/or Powys Archives.  
    Bishops Transcripts for various periods are held at the NLW

Description and Travel

Country lane near Cemmaes - on the geograph.org site

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Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Cemais / Cemmaes has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.


Military History

Cemmaes Children that was [sic] in the war - on the People's Collection Wales site

Cemmaes War Memorial, Remembrance Sunday 1960  - on the People's Collection Wales site



Bringing in the hay at Penygyrn Fam, Cemmaes - - on the People's Collection Wales site


Public Records

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Cemmaes Parish and Community Council Records   1764-1987


Cemmaes Council School various years 1910 to 1962- on the People's Collection Wales site


Social life and Customs

Children of Lower Street, Cemmaes on their bikes - on the People's Collection Wales site

Coral [sic]Society Cemmaes - on the People's Collection Wales site