St David's Church in Laleston, Bridgend County Borough, is as a medieval church with its fabric, including timber roofs, mainly intact.
In 1180, William, Earl of Gloucester is recorded as having granted land in the area to William Lageles, from whom the village is thought to have got its name. The current church was built later, to replace the nearby church of St Cewydd, the site of which is known. The nave and chancel are believed to date to the late 13th and 14th centuries, and the southern porch and tower to the later medieval period.
During the 16th century the church and the manor of Laleston belonged to Margam Abbey, and in 1522, the parishioners were given a lease on the tithe barn. At the Dissolution, Sir Rice Mansel purchased the manor.
The church is built on a standard plan, with a west tower, nave and lower chancel. It has, probably incorrectly, been attributed to a 12th-century mason called 'Lalys'.
The tower interior is in the Perpendicular Gothic style. The church underwent restoration by John Prichard in 1871, and the stained glass windows, probably by Clayton and Bell, are from that decade.
The interior is limewashed, and features numerous engravings on the walls, dated to the 17th and 18th centuries. The chancel stalls, of oak, and the desk and pulpit date to 1958. William Clarke of Llandaff was hired for wood carvings in the sanctuary; he added the reredos in 1908.
Several graves of the Ben(n)et family of Laleston House (located close to the church), a family notable locally in the 17th and 18th centuries, are to be found in the church.References:
The Amphitheatre of the Three Gauls was part of the federal sanctuary of the three Gauls dedicated to the cult of Rome and Augustus celebrated by the 60 Gallic tribes when they gathered at Lugdunum (Lyon). The amphitheatre was built at the foot of the La Croix-Rousse hill at what was then the confluence of the Rhône and Saône.
Excavations have revealed a basement of three elliptical walls linked by cross-walls and a channel surrounding the oval central arena. The arena was slightly sloped, with the building"s south part supported by a now-vanished vault. The arena"s dimensions are 67,6m by 42m. This phase of the amphitheatre housed games which accompanied the imperial cult, with its low capacity (1,800 seats) being enough for delegations from the 60 Gallic tribes.
The amphitheatre was expanded at the start of the 2nd century. Two galleries were added around the old amphitheatre, raising its width from 25 metres to 105 metres and its capacity to about 20,000 seats. In so doing it made it a building open to the whole population of Lugdunum and its environs.