Bournemouth - The Annunciation

Charminster Road, Bournemouth, Dorset

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The first independent work of architecture by [Sir] Giles Gilbert Scott, the architect of Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, showing an inventive and original use of Gothic forms.

During the first decade of the twentieth century there was a large amount of new residential development in the Richmond Park and Charminster area, north of the centre of Bournemouth. A good site for a new church in Charminster Road was given by Miss Ellis, and Mrs Lionel Coxon decided to give the church as a memorial to her farther, General Augustus Meyrick. The building cost £4,250 and was opened in January 1907; the builders were G McWilliam & Sons of Bournemouth.

1965 additions comprised an extra nave bay, together with a loft for organ and choir, a new Lady Chapel and sacristy to the north and a new baptistery to the west (architects Alan Stewart and H G Jacobs of Bournemouth). In 1969 the sanctuary was reordered.

1906-7, Sir Giles Gilbert Scott's first church. Stone contrast of tall chancel and even taller transepts with low nave. Geometrical Gothic style, red brick with stone bands and dressings, thin bricks arranged in 5 courses of stretchers
to 2 of headers. Nave roof hidden behind flat parapet and shallow gable, 3 light Geometrical windows at sides. Soaring west wall of crossing with 2 Geometrical windows and strongly modelled buttressed bellcote, very tall upper pair of 2-light windows at transept ends. East wall windowless, 2 big buttresses with many set-offs. Nave interior single-storey with 3-bay arcades framing arched recesses instead of aisles, narrow passages penetrating the piers, simple chamfers, no capitals. Similar low west arch of crossing, east arch by contrast very high. Chancel 3-storey: blank plaster walls at lower level, than triforium gallery with elegantly moulded pair of arches (without capitals) on each side, and decorative wrought-iron balcony connecting them above altar, clerestory of 3 tiny flat-topped 2-light windows on each side. Triforium continued as open gallery over low north and south crossing arches. Piers have bands of pink stone. Original High Altar very shallow, on brackets and central colonette (recent altar freestanding in front). Altar
rail of striped slate-grey and white stone on curved steps. Modern west gallery, with top lit baptistery further west.
Listing NGR: SZ0972493181

Diocese: Portsmouth

Architect: [Sir] Giles Gilbert Scott

Original Date: 1906

Conservation Area: No

Modifications: 1959-65

Listed Grade: Grade II*