Building » Haresfinch – St Peter and St Paul

Haresfinch – St Peter and St Paul

Woodlands Road, Haresfinch, St Helens WA11

A pleasant example of the stripped Romanesque style so widely adopted in the interwar period, with a remarkably austere interior.

The  parish  was  formed  and  the  church  built  in  1938,  to  cater  for  the  interwar northward expansion of St Helens.

SS Peter and Paul is an exercise in the stripped Romanesque style typical of many interwar  churches in the Liverpool archdiocese. Built  of buff brick with  tile roof coverings, the plan of the church comprises and nave and sanctuary under one roof, a squat tower at the (liturgical) northwest corner with a balancing single-storey projection at the southwest corner, lean-to aisles and sacristies and a passage to the presbytery at the east end of the north side. The tall gabled west wall has a central doorway with stone surround flanked by two small round-headed windows; above the door is a single tall round-headed window. The tower does not rise above the ridge of the roof. It has a single slit window in each exposed face, a stone band-course incorporating  the  cills  of  the  segment-headed  belfry  windows  and  a  shallow pyramidal roof.  The side walls are divided into bays by brick pilaster strips, with a single round-headed window in each bay above the aisle roofs.

The interior is extremely austere. The walls are plain plastered throughout. The floor is covered with green terrazzo tiles. On each side of the nave, low round-headed arches open into the low aisles with their sloping roofs. In the walls of the aisles are blind round-headed recesses with the Stations of the Cross. The clear-glazed round headed windows are punched into the walls with no reveals.  The king-post trusses of the roof are exposed with the ceiling above plastered. At the west end is a gallery with a plastered front, the underside enclosed as the vestibule area.  At the east end a wide semi-circular arch divides the nave from the unaisled sanctuary; it is echoed by a blind arch on the east wall, producing a decidedly Soanic effect. The sanctuary has been re-ordered, and the white marble high altar, forward altar and ambo are clearly later additions. The nave benches are probably original.

Heritage Details

Architect: Not established

Original Date: 1938

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not Listed