The Church of St John the Baptist is a medieval church in Llanblethian. Believed to have been built in the 12th century, the church boasts an unusual tower, consistent with the style more common in the south west of England. It underwent extensive restoration in the late 19th century, undertaken by C. B. Fowler of Cardiff.
The Church of St John the Baptist is first documented in a mid 12th century charter which showed it as a possession of Tewkesbury Abbey. Architectural evidence of its age lies in the short, low chancel which is established as 12th century. The west tower is in the Somerset style and was reputedly gifted in 1477, by Lady Anne Neville, heiress to the lordship of Glamorgan and wife of Richard, Duke of Gloucester, later King Richard III of England.
In the 1890s the church underwent restoration, conducted by the diocesan architect C. B. Fowler. The interiors were heavily restored, which included removal of the original wall plaster leaving the brickwork and mortar exposed. A benefit of the work was the opening up the fine oak roof, though much of the medieval timbers need to be replaced. During the restoration work the crypt under the vestry was opened and the remains of roughly 200 bodies was discovered. It is unknown if the crypt has been used as an ossuary for bodies moved from the graveyard or a mass burial site from an historical event.
The original 12th century chancel is located by the single-light window at the north wall, its internal stonework is original. The west tower is in the Somerset style, similar to that of St John the Baptist Church, Cardiff, the oldest medieval church in the capital. The tower stands as an exotic feature to the location with its features similar to those found in Cornwall and Devon, but rarely in Glamorgan.References:
The Walled City of Jajce is a medieval fortified nucleus of Jajce in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with citadel high above town on top of pyramidal-shaped steep hill, enclosed with approximately 1,300 metres long defensive walls,. It is one of the best preserved fortified capitals of the Bosnian Kingdom, the last stronghold before the kingdom dissolved under the pressure of military advancement at the onset of Ottoman Empire takeover.
The entire complex of the Walled city of Jajce, with the citadel, city ramparts, watchtower Medvjed-kula, and two main city gate-towers lies on the southern slope of a large rocky pyramid at the confluence of the rivers Pliva and Vrbas, enclosed by these rivers from the south-southwest, with the bed of the Pliva, and east-southeast by the river Vrbas gorge.
The fortress was built by Hrvoje Vukčić Hrvatinić, the founder of Jajce. However, the city became the seat of the Bosnian kings, hence the royal coat of arms decoration on the citadel entrance. A part of the wall was built by the Hungarian King, while the Ottomans erected the powder magazine. The walls are high and the castle was built on a hill that is egg shaped, the rivers Pliva and Vrbas also protect the castle. There is no rampart on the south and west.
Jajce was first built in the 14th century and served as the capital of the independent Kingdom of Bosnia during its time. The town has gates as fortifications, as well as a castle with walls which lead to the various gates around the town. About 10–20 kilometres from Jajce lies the Komotin Castle and town area which is older but smaller than Jajce. It is believed the town of Jajce was previously Komotin but was moved after the Black Death.
The first reference to the name of Jajce in written sources is from the year 1396, but the fortress had already existed by then. Jajce was the residence of the last Bosnian king Stjepan Tomasevic; the Ottomans besieged the town and executed him, but held it only for six months, before the Hungarian King Matthias Corvinus seized it at the siege of Jajce and established the Banovina of Jajce.
Skenderbeg Mihajlović besieged Jajce in 1501, but without success because he was defeated by Ivaniš Korvin assisted by Zrinski, Frankopan, Karlović and Cubor.
During this period, Queen Catherine restored the Saint Mary"s Church in Jajce, today the oldest church in town. Eventually, in 1527, Jajce became the last Bosnian town to fall to Ottoman rule. The town then lost its strategic importance, as the border moved further north and west.
Jajce passed with the rest of Bosnia and Herzegovina under the administration of Austria-Hungary in 1878. The Franciscan monastery of Saint Luke was completed in 1885.
The Walled city of Jajce is located at the confluence of the Pliva and Vrbas rivers. It was founded and started developing in the Middle Ages and acquired its final form during the Ottoman period. There are several churches and mosques built in different times during different rules, making Jajce a rather diverse town in this aspect. It is declared National Monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and, as the old Jajce city core, including the waterfall, and other individual sites outside the walled city perimeter, such as the Jajce Mithraeum, it is designated as The natural and architectural ensemble of Jajce and proposed as such for inscription into the UNESCO"s World Heritage Site list. The bid for inscription is currently placed on the UNESCO Tentative list.