Birchley Road, Billinge, Wigan WN5
A good example of an early nineteenth-century chapel, built shortly before Catholic Emancipation and displaying more of a show front than such reticent earlier chapels as those at Portico and Netherton. The interior has been altered and retains little of its original character.
The Diocesan Directory gives the date for the establishment of the mission as 1618, and the parish registers for Billinge date from the 1690s. The present building was erected in the early nineteenth-century, and there were significant adaptations in the mid- and late nineteenth-century.
The church and presbytery are described in the list entry, below. The west gallery is doubtless part of the 1870s improvements, together with the eastern apse and the font. The interior is seated with modern benches.
Catholic church and presbytery. Church of 1828, with mid C19 apse and presbytery. Stone with slate roof. 3-bay nave with impost band and cornice; pedimented west gable. Round-headed windows have keystones and leaded glazing, and rectangular panels above. West end has windows flanking entrance which has porch with paired unfluted Doric columns, frieze and cornice. Gable has projecting panel with entwined initials. Rectangular apse has paired round-headed lancets and adjoins the presbytery, of 2 storeys and 3 bays. 3rd bay has gable and ground-floor canted bay window with hipped roof. Central entrance has shallow gabled porch. Interior: Segmental vaulted ceiling. Small west gallery above internal porch with etched glazing. Round chancel arch on paired columns with scrolly capitals. Canted apse with large paintings, niche to right, altar to left. Font of 1877, alabaster on coloured marble shafts; panels of evangelist’s symbols.
Architect: Not established
Original Date: 1828
Conservation Area: No
Listed Grade: Grade II