The market town of Holt sits on the banks of the River Dee in Wrexham County on the Welsh - English border. Visitors to the charming town can view the ruins of the 13th century Holt Castle (also known as Lion's Castle), built close to the river to protect the bridge.
The old castle may be in ruins but Holt Bridge an historic Grade I listed 14th-century sandstone bridge still links Holt with the English village of Farndon. During the English civil war both sides fought for control of Holt and its strategic river crossing. Today it is a more peaceful setting with a delightful picnic area close to the picturesque sandstone cliffs.
Holt village is surrounded by history, the village holds a medieval market cross, and the parish church has parts dating back to the 14th,15th, and 17th Century.
There are several trails in the local area: heritage walks within the village and its neighbour Farndon (guides are available in the church for the Holt Village Trail); walks along the banks of the Dee; and walks among the rolling border countryside. The Holt Village Trail embraces many interesting features from the Roman occupation of Britain, right up to recent times.
St Chads Church: Holt parish church is dedicated to St Chad and stands on the banks of the River Dee in picturesque but often turbulent border country. The attractive red sandstone church dates back to 1395. Further building works took place in the late 15th Century under the patronage of Henry V11's mother Margaret Beaufort (married to Lord Stanley) and the church is one of the “Stanley” group of churches. (These include St Giles Wrexham, St Mary's Mold, and All Saint's Church Gresford)
The church has much of historic interest and a number of beautiful memorials enhance the interior.
The north door tells its own story, with loopholes for gun barrels dating back to the Civil War period of 1645, and there is ample evidence of a battle fought with muskets inside the church.
As with other churches close to the River Dee, in August the ancient custom of Rushbearing is a huge attraction, when new floor rushes from the banks of the River are brought in procession.