Christ Church, Chester

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Christ Church, Chester
Christ Church, Chester - - 1068131.jpg
Christ Church, Chester is located in Cheshire
Christ Church, Chester
Christ Church, Chester
Location in Cheshire
Coordinates: 53°11′49″N 2°53′19″W / 53.1969°N 2.8885°W / 53.1969; -2.8885
OS grid reference SJ 407,670
Location Somerset Street, Chester, Cheshire
Country England
Denomination Church of England
Website Christ Church
Status Parish church
Functional status Active
Heritage designation Grade II
Designated 23 July 1998
Architect(s) John Douglas
Architectural type Church
Style Gothic Revival
Groundbreaking 1876
Completed 1900
Materials Sandstone and red brick
Grey-green slate roofs
Parish Chester, Christ Church
Deanery Chester deanery
Archdeaconry Chester archdeaconry
Diocese Diocese of Chester
Vicar(s) Graham Shaw
Assistant priest(s) Ralph Kemp
Reader(s) Veronica Johnston
Alison Linfield
Churchwarden(s) James Cox

Christ Church is a Church of England parish church in Somerset Street, Chester, Cheshire, England.[1] It is in the Archdeaconry of Chester and the Deanery of Chester. Its benefice is combined with that of St Michael, Plas Newton.[citation needed] It is a Grade II listed building.[2]


The church was built to replace an earlier church dated 1838 on the site which had been designed by Thomas Jones.[3] It was rebuilt in separate stages by John Douglas. The chancel dates from 1893, the southeast chapel from 1897, the nave was completed in 1900, and the northwest baptistry was added in 1904. A southwest steeple was planned but was never built. The porch was built in 1936, in place of the planned steeple.[4]



The chancel and the southeast chapel are built of sandstone ashlar and the rest of the church is in red brick with stone dressings. The roofs are of grey-green slates. The style is Gothic Revival.[2][4] The plan of the church consists of a five-bay nave with a clerestory, north and south aisles, a chancel, a baptistry, a southeast chapel, vestries, and a south porch. Over the porch is a cantilevered timber-framed hip-roofed bellcote. The gables have crosses as finials and the nave roof has five blocked lucarnes on each slope.[2]


Sir Charles Nicholson designed the gilded reredos, the organ case, and the side screen, between 1900 and 1910, and the rood beam in 1920, and also possibly the gates to the chapel. The reredos in the chapel, dating from 1897, was designed by Kempe, its figures being carved by Joseph Mayer of Oberammergau. The paintings of 1910 on the organ screen are by Gertrude Siddall. Robert Hilton designed the bishop's chair and a prayer board. There are two fonts, one probably dating from 1837, octagonal and in stone, and another dating from 1904 in alabaster. The churchwardens' settles date from 1837, and were formerly in St Mary's Church, Eccleston.

Also in the church is a painting depicting Christ prepared for the Entombment by Westall, dated 1826, and which was an altarpiece in Eccleston church. There is a painting of Mary Magdalene, startled in a wood, by Herbert Gustave Schmalz. Much of the stained glass is by Kempe, including that in the southeast chapel of 1897, the south aisle of 1901, the west window of 1902, and outside the baptistry. Above the older font is a window by A. Hilton dated 1906, depicting an angel. The baptistry glass also dates from 1906 and is by A. K. Nicholson. The memorials dating from between about 1895 to 1917 consist of small alabaster plaques.[4] The two-manual organ was built by Brindley & Foster of Sheffield.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Archbishops' Council. "Chester, Christ Church". A Church Near You. Church of England. Retrieved 3 October 2009. 
  2. ^ a b c Historic England. "Christ Church, Chester  (Grade II) (1375936)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 4 May 2011. 
  3. ^ Hubbard, Edward (1991). The Work of John Douglas. London: The Victorian Society. p. 131. ISBN 0-901657-16-6. 
  4. ^ a b c Hartwell, Clare; Hyde, Matthew; Hubbard, Edward; Pevsner, Nikolaus (2011) [1971]. Cheshire. The Buildings of England. New Haven and London: Yale University Press. pp. 240–241. ISBN 978-0-300-17043-6. 
  5. ^ "Cheshire, Chester, Christ Church, Newtown". British Institute of Organ Studies. Retrieved 3 December 2010.