Building » Ashbourne – All Saints

Ashbourne – All Saints

Belle Vue Road, Ashbourne, Derbyshire DE6

A modest red brick Gothic structure of 1888 by Edward Simpson of Bradford, who worked widely for the Catholic Church in the north of England. It has recently been sympathetically extended. The gate piers and railings are listed structures.

The church is on the site of an earlier building, possibly on land given by the Earl of Shrewsbury. The exact date is not known with certainty, but it may have been put up in the 1840s or before. This building was described as a ‘dingy old edifice’ in the Derby Mercury (27 August 1888). It was pulled down and replaced by the present church in 1888, from designs by ‘Mr Simpson’ of Bradford’, presumably Edward Simpson. Kelly’s Directory mentions ‘an altar of alabaster, designed and constructed by the donor, Major-General F. Hercy; in 1900 an oaken pulpit was carved and presented by Col. Hercy; the church affords 120 sittings’.

The church was reorientated in the 1970s, and a transeptal extension added to the north in 2005, from designs by Anthony Short & Partners. At the same time a car park was created along the frontage.


All Saints is a modest building of brick with a porch at the west end, three pairs of lancet windows along the south side, a short southwest bellcote and a presbytery attached on the east side. The porch gives to a narrow narthex with two arched openings to the nave. This is very simply treated, with an open timber roof. The bench seating is of simple design and was turned around to face north during a reorientation of the interior which took place during the 1970s. The building was skilfully extended to the north by Anthony Short & Partners in 2005. The new space flows from the old interior, brightly lit by a clerestory window. The altar was moved into the extension and placed against the north wall. The altar is of Derbyshire alabaster and was given in 1900 by Major-General and Colonel Hercy, who have been credited with the design. It has been split to form a forward altar. The altar is flanked by statues on pedestals.

Heritage Details

Architect: Edward Simpson; Anthony Short & Partners

Original Date: 1888

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not Listed