Salisbury - The Most Holy Redeemer

Fotherby Crescent, Bishopdown, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP1

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A small and striking modern church of some architectural quality by a well-regarded architectural practice.  The impressive interior has been little altered.

The church of the Most Holy Redeemer was built in the early 1960s to serve the inhabitants of the new Bishopdown housing estate on the east side of Salisbury. It was designed by Robert Potter and Richard Hare of Salisbury and Southampton for a congregation of 160-180. Work began on the church in 1960 but building was not completed until 1964.  A small hall was later added on the south side of the church in the same modern style and materials as the main building. Possibly at the same time, the original glazed entrance vestibule shown at figure 1 was replaced with a gabled porch. The parish was erected in 1964 and was independent for a while but is now served from St Osmund, Salisbury (qv).

The church is a small but striking modern building, rectangular on plan with a tall, steeply-pitched slated roof swept down over narrow side aisles.  The west gable wall is largely glass, slightly canted, with flanks of grey brick and a (later) gabled central porch which is also largely glass. The side elevations have strip windows under the eaves and the wall below them is rendered and divided into bays by slim concrete buttresses tapering towards the top. The church has a shallow sanctuary the same height as the nave, with side windows and a blind east wall of grey brick, canted to form a prow.

The interior is equally striking, with the main members of the tall roof enclosed by vertical timbering to produce a folded effect and brought down onto slim polygonal concrete piloti (four on each side). The ceiling between the timbered roof trusses is boarded. Otherwise the interior is plainly finished, with a floor of black marbled linoleum tiles. The windows are all clear glazed. Many of the simple fittings including the timber and metal benches, the altar rails and the altar itself are original, the last of these located away from the east wall to allow for westward-facing celebration of the Mass. 

Diocese: Clifton

Architect: Potter & Hare

Original Date: 1964

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not listed