Building » Brindle – St Joseph

Brindle – St Joseph

Chapel Fold, Hoghton, Brindle, Preston PR5

The church of St Joseph and its associated buildings are of high historical and architectural importance. The church is a good example of an early nineteenth-century Catholic chapel, with later alterations and furnishings of architectural interest. The attached presbytery and cottage are buildings of architectural and historic interest in their own right, retaining a range of contemporary interior features.

A late-seventeenth or early eighteenth-century cottage where Mass is said to have been celebrated survives on the site, attached to the presbytery. The site is associated with St Edmund Arrowsmith, who was active in the area and was apprehended in Brindle in 1628. A chapel was built in 1786, and a graveyard seems to have been established at that time. The presbytery appears to be of laterĀ  eighteenth-century date. The chapel was subsequently rebuilt and extended. A report by the Archdiocesan Liturgy Commission of 1985 attributes the church to Fr Laurence Hadley, but it is unclear which phase of building is referred to and the source is not given.


See list description, below. A thorough building survey might help to elucidate the different phases of construction, however it seems likely that the present building is substantially or wholly of early nineteenth-century date. It was probably built in 1832 incorporating the datestone of a predecessor chapel of 1786. The building was extended in 1888 and again in 1896 (architect Charles Walker). The interior has a west gallery on clustered cast-iron columns. The east end with tall attached columns is as described in the list description. A highly ornate Jacobean screen to the Lady Chapel of circa 1905 is said to have been designed by Fr Cuthbert Almond. The chapel has a reredos in similar style. Bench seating with unusual cast iron supports is probably of late-nineteenth or early-twentieth-century date. High quality late -nineteenth-century pulpit (mutilated) with painted sides, and ornate font probably of the same date are said, together with some of the statuary, to have been obtained from Beyaert of Bruges, who are also said to have executed the elaborate alabaster altar and reredos to designs by Fr Almond. The forward altar has been made from a seventeenth-century item of furniture, possibly a sideboard. It incorporates fine carved figures and marquetry. Stained glass is of good but not outstanding quality and appears to be a complete scheme of early twentieth-century date.

List description


Roman Catholic church, dated 1786 on north gable, enlarged 1832, 1889 and
1896. Sandstone ashlar with rusticated quoins, slate roof. Six bays on
north-south axis, with east transept to south end. Simple classical style,
with plinth, sill band, moulded eaves cornice, round-headed windows;
pedimented north gable has round-headed doorway with rusticated voussoirs, a Venetian window above with consoles to the sill, blind rectangular windows flanking this, and in the pediment a quatrefoil panel lettered.

Behold O Lord our
I will come into THY House I will
worship towards THY Holy Temple
in Thy FEAR

Side walls have tall round-headed windows with Gibbs surrounds; west side has rusticated quoins to end of 5th bay, a lean-to extension to the added bay beyond; east side has in corresponding position a short transept with
semi-circular apsidal south end; south gable has blind oeil-de-boeuf in the
apex, and below this level a lower addition (sanctuary) linked to presbytery
(q.v.). Interior: added south bay in Baroque style, with large Corinthian
demi-columns of polished stone on pedestals, blind arcades with large
paintings in the side bays and an elliptical sanctuary arch in the centre
framing a large Baroque-style tripartite reredos (of 1889); carved pulpit
with sounding board in similar style. Reference: George Birtill In the
Footsteps of the Faithful: a history of St. Joseph’s, Brindle 1677-1977 (1977)

Listing NGR: SD6017526484

Heritage Details

Architect: Rev. Laurence Hadley (attributed); Charles Walker (additions)

Original Date: 1786

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Grade II