Building » Bourne End – St Dunstan

Bourne End – St Dunstan

Cores End Road, Bourne End, Bucks

A post-Vatican II church, thoughtfully designed to meet the needs of the new liturgy. It is linked to the previous temporary church and a new presbytery to form a church complex. 

The first place of Catholic worship in Bourne End was a timber temporary church erected in 1956. Designs for the present building were approved in 1969 but the foundation stone was not laid until 1978 and the finished building (opened in 1980) differed slightly from the original design. The Catholic Building Review noted of the original design that ‘the church and presbytery are planned as a group, with the existing temporary church shown converted into a social hall’. Particular attention was given to the informal meeting of the congregation with the priest after Mass.


The church itself is rectangular on plan, the external walls faced with red brick and mostly blind apart from two rectangular windows on the Core’s Road and car park sides. From behind the plain parapet of the external walls rises an octagonal conical roof clad in artificial slate with an open steel fleche over the small skylight at the roof’s apex. The main roof is slightly off-centre and in one corner is a smaller conical skylight over the altar.

The internal walls are of bare-faced red brick, with a steel and timber roof of which the main steel members are exposed. The windows are all clear glazed, but even so the level of natural light in low, accentuating the top light over the original altar position. The original plans showed a symmetrical layout, with benches grouped on three sides of a rectangular central space described by the architects as a ‘lineal sanctuary’ containing a central altar, ambo, president’s chair, font and lectern. In execution, the altar was placed on a dais in one corner of the space with the other elements grouped round it in a more conventional manner.

Amended by AHP 24.01.2021

Heritage Details

Architect: Williams & Winkley

Original Date: 1980

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not Listed