stgregorys.org.uk

History

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St. Gregory's Church was built in the decorated style and begun in the spring of 1854 to replace a simple chapel which had been erected on the site of the present tower in 1809 by the first Rector, Father Augustine Birdsall O.S.B. The chancel was opened for worship in May 1857. The tower and spire were begun but not completed until 1876, when the present nave, which connected the two existing parts of the building, was built. The church was consecrated in 1877.

The Church was designed by the famous architect, Charles Hansom. It contains many beautiful stained glass windows, crafted by the John Hardman Studios of Warley, Worcestershire, six of which are original, the others dating from 1857 - 1900. There are many fine stone carvings including the reredos behind the High Altar, the Pulpit front, altar fronts and a magnificent set of Stations of the Cross around the walls.

The beautiful window behind the High Altar shows Our Lady being crowned in heaven by the Blessed Trinity following her Assumption. There are two roundels at the bottom of the window which show, on the left, the Annunciation, and on the right, the Nativity.

The front of the high altar is divided into five sections. In the centre is a seated figure of Our Lord holding a chalice and the Sacred Host. There is a panel either side showing kneeling angels, playing on musical instruments; the outside panels are of standing angels.

The Reredos consists of a series of canopied niches containing the figures of the four Evangelists with their respective symbols. St. Peter and St. Paul, in adoration, are also included. There are several near life size statues around the Sanctuary including a beautiful one of Our Lady which was carved by an artist in Munich.