Building » Cardiff (Gabalfa) – Our Lady of Lourdes

Cardiff (Gabalfa) – Our Lady of Lourdes

Gabalfa Avenue, Gabalfa, CF14 2QQ

A simple steel-framed building of 1957, built to serve a new housing estate and originally intended as a temporary structure.

The Gabalfa housing estate was built in the late 1940s and early 1950s, receiving many Catholic families displaced by the post-war housing clearance in the docks and Newtown areas. A parish was erected in 1957 and the present church built, from designs by F. R. Bates & Son. The building was intended as temporary. The first parish priest was Fr Fitzsimmons, who raised funds for a separate parish hall. In recent years the parish has been recombined with the parish of St Teilo, from where it is now served.


The building has a steel frame with cavity brick infilling which is rendered externally. The main pitched roof is covered with pantiles. The flat roofs have metal coverings. The plan comprises a nave and sanctuary under a continuous pitched roof, enclosed on the west, south and east sides by continuous lower flat-roofed additions containing a western narthex, southwest porch, south aisle, southeast chapel and eastern sacristies. The west wall of this lower part is faced with rough stonework. The southwest porch is recessed under a flat canopy with triple steel rods at the external angle. The south aisle has continuous metal glazing. The exposed north side of the nave has three large plain rectangular window openings with metal windows.

Inside, the church the steel frame is exposed, as are the wood-wool slabs which form the ceilings. The floor is carpeted and all the windows are clear glazed. The nave has wooden bench seating which is doubtless original. A plain rectangular opening leads to the short sanctuary which has a woodblock floor and wood panelled walls with strip windows high on either side. There is a modern timber forward altar and a full-height timber reredos against the east wall, part of the original high altar ensemble.

Heritage Details

Architect: F. R. Bates & Son

Original Date: 1957

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not Listed