Building » Addingham – (Our Lady and) English Martyrs

Addingham – (Our Lady and) English Martyrs

Bolton Road, Addingham, Ilkley, West Yorkshire

A modest  stone-built Arts and Crafts church in an attractive village setting. The dedication evokes the memory of three local Elizabethan martyrs.

Addingham is notable for its connection with three local Martyrs: Richard Kirkman, who born in the village and who was executed at York in 1582, Christopher Wharton and Richard Horner, both born in nearby Bolton Bridge and executed at York in 1598. Up until 1893 provision for Mass was at nearby Ilkley. Fr Galli from Sacred Heart of Jesus, Ilkley secured the use of two upper rooms in a building just off Main Street in Addingham. The rooms were registered in 1907 as a place of worship and for marriages in 1909. Mass was said here once a month by the priests from Ilkley until 1922, when the Bishop of Leeds entrusted the care of the Addingham Catholics to the Passionist fathers at Myddleton Lodge. Addingham was made a separate parish at this time.

From 1922 onwards it was hoped to build a new church and a site was found on Bolton Road. On 9 August 1927 the foundation stone of a new church was laid by Bishop Cowgill and the church was dedicated to Our Lady and the English Martyrs. The architect was W. H. H. Marten of Leeds and the church was built at a cost of £2,000.

The Passionist fathers had care over the parish until 1978. In 1981 James Clarke and Sarah Foley, two former inhabitants of the village, endowed the building of the presbytery and link building containing parish rooms. The sanctuary was reordered at about this time.


A single-storey structure, constructed on a sandstone plinth with concrete dressings and pebbledash walls and a red plaintile roof. Arts and Crafts style. Rectangular in plan, the west (street) elevation is a gable wall with a dressed stone porch with opposing doors on the north and south sides. Surrounds to windows and doors all moulded concrete. The north and south elevations are identical, of six bays with stone buttresses. The long sloping roofline is broken by four dormer windows.

Good porch doors with decorative glass panels and door furniture in Arts and Crafts style. Once inside the main feature is the open arch-braced truss roof; later metal structural supports have been inserted. The roof trusses spring from delicate carved fluted columns which have exposed concrete bases. The church is lit by the dormer windows at clerestory height in the north and south elevations. A central aisle flanked by simple wooden pews leads to the sanctuary. The reordering has left some of the original Gothic wooden altar rails and a forward altar of white and coloured marble stands in front of the original altar and reredos. This is constructed of a combination of coloured marbles and alabaster; the altar is similar to that installed in the chapel at Myddleton Lodge by the Passionists and provided by Boulton & Sons of Cheltenham. Here the medallions illustrate two of the English Martyrs. The Stations of the Cross were donated by members of the Fattorini family. The sacristy lies behind the sanctuary and used to house stairs up to the roof space where overnight accommodation was provided for the visiting Passionist fathers.

Heritage Details

Architect: W. H. H. Marten

Original Date: 1928

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not Listed