St Peter and St Paul, Bromley
|St Peter and St Paul|
|Architect(s)||J. Harold Gibbons|
|Vicar(s)||Rev. Anne Jablonski|
St Peter and St Paul is a church in the town of Bromley, Borough of Bromley, in south east London. Known familiarly as Bromley Parish Church, it is not far from Bromley High Street and approximately halfway between Bromley North and Bromley South railway stations. The church is part of the Diocese of Rochester within the Church of England. Largely destroyed by bombing during the Second World War, St Peter and St Paul was rebuilt in the 1950s.
The pre-World War II church, generally in the Perpendicular style with a square embattled tower having a turret at one of the angles, had its north aisle rebuilt in 1792 and was completely refurbished and enlarged in 1830. Virtually the whole church—with the exception of the tower—was demolished by a bomb on the night of 16 April 1941. Arthur Gresley Hellicar (1835–1905) was Vicar of Bromley from 1865 to 1905.
On St Edward the Confessor’s Day, 13 October 1949, the foundation stone of the new church was laid by then Princess Elizabeth (later Queen Elizabeth II). Eight years later, the last phase of rebuilding was complete and on 14 December 1957 the new church was consecrated by the Bishop of Rochester, Christopher Maude Chavasse. The present church incorporates the medieval tower and much of the flint and fragments of the original stone building.
Items of interest
The organ, built in 1991 by J. W. Walker & Sons Ltd, was designed to support congregational worship, to accompany a traditional choir, and as a recital instrument for use alone or with other instruments. It has three manuals and pedals, 40 speaking stops, six couplers, and three tremulants, and comprises 55 ranks with 2,708 pipes. The manual and pedal actions of the organ are mechanical; the stop control is electro-magnetic with a solid state capture combination action. The instrument was made and first assembled in Walker’s workshops at Brandon, before being dismantled and installed in the church—it weighs approximately 12 tons. The organ cases, gallery woodwork and carved pipeshades were designed by David Graebe.
Famous people buried at St Peter and St Paul have included:
- John Yonge or Young, bishop of Rochester
- Elizabeth Jervis Porter Johnson, wife of Samuel Johnson: her memorial was salvaged after World War II and re-erected in the rebuilt church
- John Hawkesworth, writer, editor, and friend of Johnson
- Zachary Pearce, bishop of Rochester
- John Gifford, British political writer and supporter of Pitt the Younger
- Sir Claude and Sir Edward Scott, first and second baronets of Lychet Minster
- James Thorne, Handbook to the environs of London, alphabetically arranged (London, 1876), pp. 61-62 
- A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 395-400
- Margaret Agnes Rope and Margaret Edith Rope: Stained Glass Artists of the Arts and Crafts Movement
- Bromley Lost Memorials