St Paul's Church, Whitley Bay

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Coordinates: 55°2′30.05″N 1°26′52.11″W / 55.0416806°N 1.4478083°W / 55.0416806; -1.4478083

St Paul's Church, Whitley Bay
Whitley Bay, St paul's Church - - 223880.jpg
St Paul's Church in Whitley Bay Town Centre
Denomination Church of England
Churchmanship Traditional Catholic
Dedication Saint Paul
Heritage designation Grade II
Architect(s) Anthony Salvin
Deanery Tynemouth
Diocese Diocese of Newcastle
Province Province of York
Bishop(s) The Rt Revd Glyn Webster (PEV)
Vicar(s) Fr Gavin Gilchrist
Reader(s) Stan Edwards
Organist/Director of music Terry Mason
Organist(s) June Gibbon
Churchwarden(s) Sean Dowinton and Victoria Denham
Music group(s) Ann Laing, Celia Temple
Servers' guild Arthur Thomas

St Paul's Church is the parish church of Whitley Bay, North Tyneside, United Kingdom. The church was founded in 1864. The church's official title is St Paul's Church, Cullercoats but it is located near the centre of the town rather than the suburb of Cullercoats.


The building was designed by Anthony Salvin for the Duke of Northumberland. It is designated by English Heritage as a Grade II listed building.[1]

Present day[edit]

The church produces a regular newsletter and parish magazine. It also holds an annual summer fair and the St Nicholas Fair and Festival during the first weekend in Advent.

Gavin Gilchrist, (born in Hull) is the resident priest. Sandra Graham and Pam MacKenzie are the churchwardens.

As a parish in the Traditional Catholic tradition,[2] they reject the ordination of women and so receive alternative episcopal oversight from the Bishop of Beverley (currently Glyn Webster).[3]

Parochial Church Council[edit]

The Parochial Church Council (PCC) oversees the administration, finances and fabric of the church. The 22 member council, which meets monthly, comprises two clergy, one lay reader, two churchwardens, one treasurer, one diocesan synod representative (who attends meetings with others from the Diocese of Newcastle and Tynemouth Deanery), three deanery synod representatives (who attend meetings with others from the Tynemouth Deanery) and 12 lay members. All members except the clergy and lay reader are elected. The standing committee, consisting of five PCC members, deals with any emergency issues arising between meetings and sets agenda for PCC meetings.

Notable clergy[edit]

List of Vicars[edit]

Name Years of Service
Canon R. F. Wheeler 1861 - 1885
The Reverend E. Smith 1885 - 1916
The Reverend F. L. Cattell 1916 - 1924
The Reverend F. J. Burt 1924 - 1928
The Reverend F. M. Dowland 1928 - 1933
The Reverend J. E. Jenkins 1933 - 1941
The Reverend F. R. Hedley 1941 - 1955
The Reverend R. H. C. Henwood 1955 - 1963
The Reverend J. H. Chicken 1963 - 1972
The Reverend R. O. Stroud 1972 - 1977
The Reverend Peter V. Rendell 1977 - 1989
The Reverend Norman Aidan Banks 1990 - 2002
The Reverend Gavin Gilchrist 2002 - present


The church has a 15-strong choir. A former organist, John Percival Forster, was killed in the Battle of the Somme on 1 July 1916, aged 28.[4] He was organist at St Paul's for six years from 1912 to 1916. A plaque commemorating his life remains to the right of the altar.


Role / Instrument Name
Director of Music / Organist Terry Mason
Deputy Organist June Gibbon
Organ scholar Nick Graham
Choir Conductor / Guitarist Celia Temple
Keyboards Ann Laing
Flute Sarah Collin

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Historic England, "Church of St Paul, Whitley Bay (1185615)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 1 October 2012 
  2. ^ "St Paul, Cullercoats, Whitley Bay". A Church Near You. Archbishops' Council. Retrieved 31 January 2017. 
  3. ^ "St Paul, Cullercoats, Whitley Bay". See of Berverley. The Bishop of Beverley. Retrieved 31 January 2017. 
  4. ^

External links[edit]