Kingston - St Agatha

King’s Road, Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey KT2

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St Agatha’s was built principally at the cost of a wealthy local benefactor, Louisa Currie, and designed by a well-established Catholic architect,   John   Kelly.   The   church   has   a   relatively   unassuming Italianate exterior, with a pedimented main front facing the road.   It has an impressive interior on a basilican plan.

The Norbiton Mission was founded in 1894 and the first priest was a Belgian, Fr Caspar Lutz.  The site for a church, presbytery and school at the junction of King’s Road and Wyndham Road was purchased in that year and the school and presbytery were built in 1895. The church was built largely at the cost of Caroline Louisa Currie as a memorial to her husband Bertram Woodhouse Currie, a banker.  The architect of the church was John Kelly of Leeds, a well-established Catholic architect, the builders were Goddard & Sons of Woking.

The altar is a modern marble design, introduced to allow for westward celebration; the old altar remains in situ. The sanctuary is enclosed by a marble altar rail and balustrade with three sets of decorative bronze gates (the middle gates have been removed).

Adjacent to the sacristy is a shrine to Bl. William Way, a priest of Kingston who was martyred in 1588.

The organ in the west gallery is by Bishop & Son of London, 1900.  The stained glass in roundels flanking the entrance dates from 1986 and was made by the Hardman studio.

LIST DESCRIPTION:

Church. 1899 by the Architect John Kelly, modelled on a church in Rome. Basilican plan. Built of red brick with sandstone dressings and slate roof. West front has pediment surmounted by cross. Above doorcase is central round-headed niche with statue of St. Agatha flanked by 2 round-headed windows with impost blocks extending into bands. Elaborate central porch with curved pediment with papal crown and keys. Tympanum has stone carving of Christ in Majesty with book with letters Alpha and Omega, an angel, an eagle and 2 lions. Composite pilasters 2 3 panel doors. Above the porch are the words "SANCTA AGATHA ORA PRO NOBIS". Aisles have circular windows to west front. Sides have 5 round-headed windows to clerestory with carved cornice. South side has 2 pedimented chapels with circular windows and 4 blank arches and curved Baptistery. Apsidal ended chancel.

Interior has 5 bay nave with composite columns. Barrel vaulted roof with coffered gilt ceiling to chancel. To rear is gallery with organ loft. Chancel has marble altar and reredos, 2 semicircular marble pulpits and marble altar rail. The side chapels also has marble altars, reredos and altar rails. Marble font to baptistery.

Diocese: Southwark

Architect: John Kelly

Original Date: 1899

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Grade II