21 January 2017
|Date||8 November 2014 (Feast day of Saint Tysilio)|
|Location||Church Island, Menai Bridge||SH 55181 71768; 53.22315°N, 4.17067°W|
The seventh-century Welsh saint Tysilio, or Sulio, was the second son of Brochwel Ysgithrog, King of Powys. He turned his back on the royal court and military service, opting instead for a religious life and later became an abbot. He is believed to have founded a hermitage on Church Island (Ynys Tysilio) in the Menai Strait. He also built churches in Meifod, Powys and Saint-Suliac, Brittany – the latter being the place to where he fled after refusing to marry his brother Cynan’s widow and succeed to the throne of Powys; it is also where he ended his days in 640.
Church Island is now accessed by a short causeway from Belgian Promenade in Menai Bridge. The churchyard covers the whole of the one-hectare island and the present church, which is still in use, was built in the 15th century and was restored at the end of the 19th century. Eglwys Sant Tysilio was a parish church until 1858 and was formerly a chapel of ease of St Mary’s Church in Llanfairpwllgwyngyll.