Burnham-on-Crouch - St Cuthbert

Western Road, Burnham-on-Crouch, Essex CM0

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A modest red brick early twentieth century church, with a contemporary presbytery. The most notable of the fittings is the stained glass in the side windows.

The church and presbytery were built in 1911 from designs by Gordon Smart of Lancaster Place, Strand, London WC, with Messrs Thomas Havers the builders. The church was opened by Cardinal Bourne on 20 March 1912. The presbytery, which was completed in July 1912, was intended as convalescent/holiday residence for priests of the Archdiocese of Westminster (the internal door frames were made wide enough to admit bath-chairs). It was built by the Rev. Harold Burton, the first rector, with a loan from Ushaw College, where Fr Burton had been a professor (hence the dedication to St Cuthbert).

In c1923 stained glass windows by Nathaniel Westlake were added in the nave.

A porch (and probably also the flat-roofed northeast chapel) was added to the church in 1966-67 as part of post-Vatican II re-ordering. At the same time the western gallery and east window were also removed.

The church is a small building comprising a short unaisled nave under a tall pitched roof with a flat roofed porch or forebuilding, a flat-roofed northeast chapel, a polygonal apse and a flat-roofed link to the contemporary presbytery. The walls are faced with red brick laid in English bond and the main roof is covered with tiles. The forebuilding extends the full width of the west front and has a central door flanked by rectangular windows with concrete lintels, and there are side windows of the same type. The west gable of the church itself has a single wide pointed window, now partly obscured. The side walls are four bays long, the bays divided by stepped buttresses. The three western bays on each side have wide pointed windows, the east bay on the north side is covered by the northeast chapel, that on the south side by the link to the presbytery. The polygonal eastern apse has lancet windows in the short side elevations and a pyramid roof.

The main interior space has a parquet floor, plain plastered walls and an open timber roof with principal trusses of thin scantling. A tall pointed arch in the east wall opens into the sanctuary; a square opening leads to the northeast chapel. The sanctuary was re-ordered in the 1960s and the furniture, with the exception of the small font, is modern. The side windows are filled with stained glass of good quality, mostly by Nathaniel Westlake and dating from the period between the wars, except the south west window, which is of 1978, by C. Massen.

Diocese: Brentwood

Architect: Gordon Smart

Original Date: 1911

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not listed