St Martin's Church, Brampton

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St Martin's Church, Brampton
St Martin's Church, Brampton.jpg
St Martin's Church, Brampton, from the northwest
St Martin's Church, Brampton is located in Cumbria
St Martin's Church, Brampton
St Martin's Church, Brampton
Location of the church in Cumbria
Coordinates: 54°56′30″N 2°44′16″W / 54.9417°N 2.7379°W / 54.9417; -2.7379
OS grid reference NY 528 610
Location Front Street,
Brampton, Cumbria
Country England
Denomination Anglican
Website St Martin, Brampton
Dedication St Martin
Consecrated 11 November 1878
Associated people George Howard, 9th Earl of Carlisle
Status Parish church
Functional status Active
Heritage designation Grade I
Designated 16 January 1984
Architect(s) Philip Webb
Architectural type Church
Style Gothic Revival
Groundbreaking 1874
Completed 1906
Deanery Brampton
Archdeaconry Carlisle
Diocese Carlisle
Province York
Vicar(s) Revd Richard Tulloch

St Martin's Church is in Front Street, Brampton, Cumbria, England. It is an active Anglican parish church in the deanery of Brampton, the archdeaconry of Carlisle and the diocese of Carlisle.[1] It is recorded in the National Heritage List for England as a designated Grade I listed building and is the only church designed by the Pre-Raphaelite architect Philip Webb.[2] The architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner described it as "a very remarkable building".[3]


The church was built on the site of a former late 17th-century hospital that had been converted into a chapel in 1789. It was built for George Howard, who later became the 9th Earl of Carlisle, together with other contributors, and was constructed between 1874 and 1878; the tower was added in 1906. The architect was Philip Webb who was closely connected with the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood; it is the only church designed by Webb.[2] It was the successor to Brampton Old Church, situated about 1 mile (2 km) to the west of the town centre.[4]



St Martin's is built in red sandstone from Wetheral quarry; it has green slate roofs and a lead spire. Its plan consists of a square west tower, a four-bay nave with north and south aisles, and a single-bay chancel with a two-storey vestry to the north and an organ chamber to the south; the body of the church is almost square. On the north side of the tower is an open arched porch with a lean-to roof. The west face contains two small two-light windows over which is a larger two-light window; all these windows are recessed within an arch. Above these are clock faces on all sides of the tower over which are two-light louvred bell-openings. At the top of the tower are gables to the west and east, and shaped parapets to the north and south. On the tower is a short pointed spire with extensions to the north and south. On the north side of the church are three two-light windows separated by buttresses, and over each window is a battlemented gable. The south aisle has a round west window, and on the south side are small rectangular windows and three gabled dormers in the clerestory. On the south wall of the organ chamber is a three-light Perpendicular style window. The east window has five lights.[2]


Interior of St Martin's Church

The entrance leads into the base of the tower that acts as a porch and a baptistry; this leads in turn through two arches into the nave. Above the arches is a clear four-light window that is lit by the window in the west wall of the tower. All the ceilings are of painted wood; that of the north aisle is a tunnel vault, the south aisle ceiling is sloping, and the ceiling of the nave and chancel is flat.[2] On each side of the nave is a four-bay arcade supported by octagonal piers; there is no chancel arch. All the stained glass was made in 1878–80 by Morris & Co. and designed by Edward Burne-Jones and William Morris. The five-light east window contains three tiers of figures. The central figure at the top is the Good Shepherd, and on each side are angels, the middle tier consists of angels, the central image in the lowest tier is a pelican, bounded on each sides by saints.[5] The east window was a memorial to Charles Howard, MP, brother of the 8th Earl of Carlisle. The font dates from the 13th century.

Soldiers' Chapel

To the north of the chancel is a war memorial chapel, with the vestry on the floor above. The chapel contains an altar panel by Byam Shaw, and a carpet with a William Morris design.[2] The three-manual organ was built about 1920 by Jardine & Co. of Manchester. It was rebuilt in 2008 by Nicholson & Co. of Malvern.[6] There is a ring of six bells that were cast in 1826 by Thomas Mears II of the Whitechapel Bell Foundry.[7]

External features[edit]

To the west of the church is St Martin's Hall, built in 1895 and designed by C. J. Ferguson. It is constructed in red sandstone with green slate roofs. The building is in two ranges, with three-bay meeting rooms in front and a five-bay hall behind. The hall is listed at Grade II.[8] It now houses an antiques centre. Between the church and the hall is Church Cottage. This is also constructed in red sandstone with a slate roof, and pre-dates the church, being built in the early 19th century. It is a small building in one storey and two bays. In about 2000 it was being used as a chiropodist's surgery and a probation office. It is also listed Grade II.[9]

Present day[edit]

The church holds services on Sundays and during the week and works in the local community. In the summer, a series of concerts is organised in the church.[10] During 2009 the church was damaged by vandals, which led to a decision to lock it during the day.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Brampton, St Martin, Church of England, retrieved 20 April 2010 
  2. ^ a b c d e Historic England, "Church of St Martin, Brampton (1137170)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 17 May 2012 
  3. ^ Pevsner, Nikolaus (2002) [1967], Cumberland and Westmorland, The Buildings of England, New Haven and London: Yale University Press, pp. 74–76, ISBN 0-300-09590-2 
  4. ^ Brampton Churches, Council for British Archaeology, retrieved 20 April 2010 
  5. ^ Hyde, Matthew; Pevsner, Nikolaus (2010) [1967], Cumbria, The Buildings of England, New Haven and London: Yale University Press, pp. 177–179, ISBN 978-0-300-12663-1 
  6. ^ Cumberland (Cumbria), Brampton, St. Martin, British Institute of Organ Studies, retrieved 20 April 2010 
  7. ^ Brampton, St Martin, Dove's Guide for Church Bell Ringers, retrieved 20 April 2010 
  8. ^ Historic England, "St Martin's Hall, Brampton (1087669)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 17 May 2012 
  9. ^ Historic England, "Church Cottage, Brampton (1087670)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 17 May 2012 
  10. ^ St Martin's Pre-Raphaelite Church, Brampton, St Martin's, Brampton, retrieved 20 April 2010 
  11. ^ Watson, Linzi (27 November 2009), "Brampton Church locked during day to stop vandals", The Cumberland News, Cumbrian Newspapers, retrieved 20 April 2010 

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