Barton-upon-Humber - St Augustine Webster

Whitecross Street, Barton-upon-Humber, Lincolnshire DN18

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Built in 1988, replacing a church of 1938, this is a utilitarian design which does not do justice to its important, elevated position in the conservation area. The old brick boundary wall is a prominent element in the townscape, and the surviving 1930s presbytery is of some design quality, albeit altered.

In 1842 Fr James Taylor took up residence at no.9 Priestgate, where a chapel was established, served from Melwood on the Isle of Axholme. Until 1938 this residence served as the base for the mission, which from 1848 until 1949 was served by Benedictines from Ampleforth.

In 1927 Bardney Hall (a fine Georgian house in Whitecross Street) was acquired by Rosminian Sisters to serve as a school. They offered the paddock lying to the north of the house, on the corner of Whitecross Street and Barrow Road, as the site for a permanent church. The foundation stone of the church of St Augustine of Canterbury was laid in 1936, the east end (tower and sanctuary with sacristies etc) of which was completed and opened in 1938 . A presbytery was built at the same time. The architect was J. Beard Foss FRIBA of London.

Funds to complete the church being scarce, and since the sanctuary was large enough to accommodate the congregation, the nave was never built.

In the 1980s a high repair bill led to a decision to demolish this church. It was replaced by a smaller and much more utilitarian design, opened in 1988. The 1938 presbytery was retained and is currently let, the parish now being served from Brigg.

The new church is dedicated to St Augustine Webster, a Carthusian from Melrose Abbey who was martyred under Henry VIII and canonised in 1970 as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales. 

A simple church hall-like design, of red brick (with grey vertical bands on the west (liturgical east) wall, and with a steep, concrete pantiled roof. Only the crucifix attached to this wall and the slender fleche on the ridge denote an ecclesiastical function. The interior is utilitarian in character, the only fittings of particular note being three new stained glass windows at  the (liturgical)  east  end, depicting the Pelican in her Piety flanked by St Augustine Webster and St Theresa of Lisieux.

The 1938 presbytery is an attractive design of its time in brick, with its original door and entrance canopy. However, it has been somewhat marred by inappropriate PVCu window replacement.  The red brick boundary wall looks to be contemporary with Bardney Hall; on the stretch facing Whitecross Street there is an attractive wooden gate with open quatrefoils in the upper panels.

Diocese: Nottingham

Architect: Not established

Original Date: 1988

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not listed