St Werburgh's Church, Bristol

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St Werburgh's Church, Bristol
Stwerburghschurch.jpg
St Werburgh's Church, Bristol is located in Bristol
St Werburgh's Church, Bristol
Location within Bristol
General information
Town or city Bristol
Country England
Coordinates 51°28′18″N 2°34′35″W / 51.4717°N 2.5764°W / 51.4717; -2.5764
Construction started 1759
Completed revised in 1879

St Werburgh's Church, Bristol, is a former church, now a climbing centre in the St Werburghs area of central north-east Bristol, England. It has been designated on the National Heritage List for England as a Grade II* listed building.[1][2]

The area became known as St Werburghs when the church was relocated from Corn Street to Mina Road in 1879.

History[edit]

The original church of St Werburgh, of medieval origin, stood in Corn Street in Bristol. It's been suggested that the dedication to an Anglo-Saxon princess, St Werburgh, could give the church a pre-Conquest foundation.[3] It was rebuilt by James Bridges in 1758.[2]

The parish it served was quite small and the building caused the road to narrow, and larger horse-drawn carriages were causing congestion.[4] An act of parliament was obtained enabling the closure of the church, with the last service being held on 12 August 1877.[5] It was then demolished and the stones numbered before being transported to the new site approximately 2 miles (3.2 km) away in Mina Road. During the removal of the church 100 coffins and 40 chects of human remains were uncovered.[6] These were reburied at Greenbank Cemetery.[4] The original site was bought by the West of England and South Wales Bank and became a branch of Lloyds Bank.

Parts of the original building, particularly the tower, were re-used in the construction of the new church under the direction of the architect John Bevan.[7] It was reconsecrated at the new site with the first service being held on 30 September 1879.[4] The church held its last service on Remembrance Sunday in 1988,[8] after which it was de-consecrated and converted into an indoor climbing centre run by Undercover Rock, where it houses a balcony café and rock walls, and has surrounding grounds.[9]

Architecture[edit]

The church is built of ashlar limestone in a Perpendicular Gothic Revival style, with an aisled nave and chancel, west porch and south-west tower.[1] The five-stage tower has an octagonal stair turret.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Historic England. "Details from listed building database (380002)". Images of England. 
  2. ^ a b c "Church of St Werburgh". National Heritage List for England. Historic England. Retrieved 24 March 2015. 
  3. ^ D Walker, Bristol in the Early Middle Ages, University of Bristol (Bristol branch of the Historical Association), 1971, p. 6
  4. ^ a b c Fells, Maurice (2014). The A-Z of Curious Bristol. History Press. p. 19. ISBN 978-0750956055. 
  5. ^ "St Werburgh". Bristol & Avon Family History Society. Retrieved 24 March 2015. 
  6. ^ Beddoe, J. (1878). "On Certain Crania disinterred at St.Werburgh's,Church, Bristol". Transactions of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society 3: 79–82. 
  7. ^ "St Werburgh". Church Crawler. Retrieved 24 March 2015. 
  8. ^ St Werburghs News – 25 years today since St Werburghs Church closed its doors
  9. ^ "Undercover Rock". Undercover Rock. Retrieved 24 March 2015. 

See also[edit]