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Church of St Paul, Warwick

Description: Church of St Paul

Grade: II
Date Listed: 19 March 1973
English Heritage Building ID: 307452

OS Grid Reference: SP2780864720
OS Grid Coordinates: 427808, 264720
Latitude/Longitude: 52.2799, -1.5938

Location: Friars Street, Warwick CV34 6HD

Locality: Warwick
Local Authority: Warwick District Council
County: Warwickshire
Country: England
Postcode: CV34 6HD

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Listing Text

19-MAR-73 (North side)
Church of St Paul

(Formerly listed as:
Church of Saint Paul)

Begun 1824 as a cemetery chapel (now the south transept). Nave and chancel added 1842-4 by R.C. Hussey of Birmingham.

MATERIALS: Limestone ashlar, slate roofs.

PLAN: T-shaped plan, the down-stroke (now the south transept and main entrance) formed from the cemetery chapel of 1824. Nave with apsidal chancel forming the cross-stroke. The four bays of the nave west of the south transept are now partitioned off as a hall.

EXTERIOR: The south transept gable end faces the road. This is in the Tudor Gothic style popular in the 1820s, and has a solid parapet with moulded strings, and diagonal buttresses at the angles. The entrance door has a four-centred arch with hoodmould, and above it a two-light window with Y-tracery. Over this again is a datestone, 1824, with a turreted gatehouse, the emblem of the town of Warwick. The east and west sides of the transept have three-light Tudor windows with one transom and a little cusping in the heads of the lights. Hussey's nave addition of 1842-4 is in the Early English style, with uncusped lancets, buttresses with shallow set-offs, and no parapet. The roofs are low, giving a chapel-like appearance. The north side is of seven uninterrupted bays, the south has four bays west of the south transept. In the return east of the transept is an unusual square bell-turret with pyramidal spirelet. The east end is a three-sided apse, unusually broad, with three grouped lancets in the centre bay.

INTERIOR: The surprisingly spacious interior was reordered in 2000 to the designs of John Bowen of Kelly & Surman, architects of Birmingham. It is generally plain, the wall surfaces painted and rendered. The south transept serves as the main entrance, with internal partitions to create two vestries flanking a central entrance corridor (all of 2000). The corridor opens out into a vestibule behind a triple arcade (Hussey, 1842-4) linking the transept with the nave. The piers are of quatrefoil section, supporting steeply pointed chamfered arches. The nave is dominated by the dark-stained timber open roof, with hammerbeam trusses. The spandrels in the trusses framing the sanctuary are infilled with open arcading, and the ends of the hammerbeams have gilded and painted shields, except over the sanctuary where the shields are replaced by gilded angels. The west end of the nave was partitioned to form a hall in the late C20, using light stud partitions backed by storage cupboards. A balcony was created against the west wall.

PRINCIPAL FIXTURES: Three-light east window with attractive and richly-coloured glass signed by Holland of Warwick, 1849. Good late C19 glass in the west gable rose window, and some smaller panels of similar glass in the hall. In the nave (north side) a First World War memorial light, and two lights by Jane Gray, 1992. Some ex-situ fittings retained: oak pulpit with rich Perp decoration, perhaps c. 1900-30. Plain octagonal font with quatrefoil panels, probably of 1842-4. The reordering of 2000 introduced upholstered chairs and carpeted floors.

HISTORY: By the early C19 there was significant population growth around the industries that grew on the western fringe of the town, and the churchyards of both St Mary and St Nicholas were full. To meet this need, the Revd. Thomas Cattell gave land for a new burial ground north of Friar Street in 1824. The ground was consecrated on July 23, 1824 and a chapel (unusually large for such buildings in the 1880s) completed later in the same year. The cost of walling the area and building the chapel was over £2,000, paid for by the Corporation. In 1842, a new Anglican church was proposed, to be achieved by enlarging the cemetery chapel. Hussey began work on November 8, 1842 and the completed church was consecrated on July 26, 1844 by the Bishop of Worcester. The parish of St Paul was formed out of the western part of St Mary's parish. Alterations were reportedly made in 1889. The architect R.C. Hussey (1802-87) was in partnership with Thomas Rickman from 1835, and took over the practice in 1838 as Rickman's health failed.

Pevsner, N, and Wedgewood, A, Buildings of England: Warwickshire (1971) 451-2
Victoria County History, 'A History of the County of Warwick: Volume 8: The City of Coventry and Borough of Warwick' (1969) 522-535
Warwickshire Record Office, DR0415/58; St Paul, Incumbent's Papers - 'Account of Richard Charles Hussey for the building of the new chapel in the Burial Ground from 8 November 1842, December 1844'

The Church of St Paul, Friars Street, Warwick, is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* A C19 church providing good evidence of the growth of Warwick outside its medieval boundaries
* A Tudor Gothic style burial ground chapel of 1824, now forming an exceptionally big transept to the later church
* Enlarged 1842-4 by R.C. Hussey (formerly of Rickman & Hussey), in a plain but serviceable Early English Gothic Revival style
* Good quality stained glass in the east window by William Holland of Warwick, and other glass of good composition and colour by unknown makers

This text is a legacy record and has not been updated since the building was originally listed. Details of the building may have changed in the intervening time. You should not rely on this listing as an accurate description of the building.

Source: English Heritage

Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.