We started the day at the Church of St Mélar in Locmelar, one of the Enclos Paroissial, which was built between 1577 and 1675. The previous day’s stumble through the bracken had affected knees and so today was a slightly quieter day – no walking but lot of sight-seeing, and yes, there were more churches to visit!
History of the Church
The Church is named after Mélor or Mélar who had a rather gruesome history before being sanctified – ‘Loc’ means ‘Place of’ or ‘dedicated to’. (French Government site here.) Curiously, the cult of St Mélar spread to Cornwall where the Saint is commemorated in several churches and his relics apparently deposited at Amesbury, near Stonehenge. The building in the foreground of the photograph below is the Sacristy and it has a keel-shaped roof, just like the Sacristy at Sizun, a church which will have a future post.
I think the photograph below is pre-1920, the date the Ossuary was demolished, and I think the building on the left may have been the Ossuary.
Enclosing wall and gate
The church has many of the characteristics of an Enclos Paroissial. The walled enclosure is still in place, separating the living from the dead, with a triumphal arch as its gateway. The openings with vertical slabs on either side are for the people to hop over while the slabs keep the cattle out of the graveyard.
The South Porch has figures of the Apostles and clearly everything was painted in the beginning.
Inside the church
The interior of the church is glorious, and the ceilings are particularly wonderful.
The Font dates from 1612.
Statues are placed around the Church.
Cupboards on stands accommodate banners.
And a last view before we moved on.