Bartley Green - St Peter

Adams Hill, Bartley Green, Birmingham B32

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A functional suburban church built in 1977. Its dedication is a reminder of the historic church of St Peter, Broad Street in the city centre, built in 1786 and demolished in 1969; some of the funds raised by the sale of the site were used to build the present church.

Bartley Green developed as a residential suburb in the late twentieth century with low-rise housing either side of Adams Hill, but there had been a small community here before, including workers’ housing occupied by nail-makers. The church was built to serve the growing Catholic community; the parish was created in 1969 by subdividing part of the parish of Our Lady and St Rose of Lima. The site was acquired by the Rev. C. O’Reilly of St Rose, Weoley Castle. Initially, Mass was said in the school, built in 1972, further north along the same road from designs by Paul Bonham Associates. The Rev. Peter Rogers led the project to build the church, which cost £69,000 and seats 250 people. The architect is given on the parish website and in Scarisbrick as Cyril Horsley, but in The Catholic Building Reviewas Paul Bonham Associates. The dedication is a reminder of the historic church of St Peter, Broad Street in the city centre, built in 1786 and demolished in 1969; some of the funds raised by the sale of the site were used to build the church.

The building is divided into three sections; a tall canted sanctuary facing roughly northeast, a wide rectangular nave and a southwest narthex, added later. The building is faced in brown brick above a blue brick flush plinth, with raking buttresses to the sanctuary, framing narrow full-height side windows. A cross on the east wall is made of steel, in the form of two crossed nails. Windows to the nave are narrow slits arranged in pairs or groups of three. The roofs are hidden behind plain parapets; the nave roof slopes gently up to the taller block of the sanctuary which is lit by a horizontal clerestory window set on the upper west wall. The added narthex has a flat roof. All roofs are laid with membrane sheet roofing. The entrance into the narthex from the west is provided by a pair of plain double doors.

The plain nave interior has fair-faced brick walls and ceilings lined with varnished tongue and groove boarding. The well-lit sanctuary has plain plastered walls, with late twentieth century liturgical fittings. The nave has hardwood pews, with a carpeted floor, and the narthex has a stone-tiled floor. Within the narthex is a large seated carved figure of St Peter, brought here from St Peter, Cobridge.

Diocese: Birmingham

Architect: Cyril Horsley/Paul Bonham Associates, Birmingham

Original Date: 1977

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not listed