Godalming - St Edmund King and Martyr

Croft Road, Godalming, Surrey GU7 1DB.

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This is a fine, if austere, church that makes the most of its prominent position on a hillside overlooking Godalming.  The most elaborate feature of the interior is the Lady Chapel with its delicate screen, painted and gilded reredos, stencilled decoration and stained glass all carried out in 1930. 

Roman Catholic Church.  1906 by F A Walters.  Bargate rubblestone brought to course with ashlar dressings.  Plain tile roof.  Built on side of hill, giving tall basement on north side.  6-bay nave with baptistery at west end, north and south porches, and 3-stage north-east tower; lower 3-bay chancel.  In modified Early English style having moulded plinth, offset buttresses, lancet windows and cross finials.  Nave: steps with retaining wall up to right (west) end which has shallow gabled porch with buttresses; chamfered pointed-arched surround with hoodmould to recessed doorway, the double board doorhaving decorative iron hinges and moulded segmental arch, the tympanum decorated with 3 cusped-headed panels, the outer two with shields; relieving arch over porch.  To left of porch, 3 windows set at high levelin pointed-arched recesses with buttresses between.  Tower has gableted full-height pilaster buttresses; gabled vice on left with 3 slit windows; one window to lower stage, two above, and louvred 2-light belfry window; corbelled eaves to pyramidal roof with finial and weather cock.  South side of nave similar, with vessica over porch.  Gabled, shallow baptistery and paired lancets to west end.  Chancel north side has two windows and, on right, 2-storey pent-roofed bay with a 2-light chamfered mullion window to each floor and stack on left.  Further to left is attached Presbytery not of special interest.  Interior: very plain with double-chamfered chancel arch on attached columns with roll-moulded bases and plain capitals; hoodmould with foliage stops.  Corbelled, arch-braced roof trusses to nave, underdrawn vaulted chancel.  Carved stone reredos with figures of saints.  Lady Chapel, in lowest stage of tower, has well carved stone screen and reredos with Madonna statue and stencilled walls and ceiling.  Decorative iron gates to baptistery.

Many features of the interior are considerably later than the church.  The High Altar and reredos, replacing a much simpler altar, were added in 1923.  The decoration of the Lady Chapel was carried out in 1930.  And the stained glass windows, all bar the west window of 1937 (possibly by Geoffrey Webb), the work of Hardman & Co, were introduced between 1922 and 1950.  The organ is said to have come from St George’s Cathedral, Southwark.

The priest’s house, attached to the east end of the church, was also designed by F A Walters and built in 1906.  It was much altered in 1957 by S G Kerr Bate of Walters and Kerr Bate.

Diocese: Arundel and Brighton

Architect: F A Walters

Original Date: 1905

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Grade II