Building » Hassop – All Saints

Hassop – All Saints

Bakewell Road, Hassop, Derbyshire

All Saints is a building of exceptional architectural and historic importance as an early 19th century Catholic Chapel of highly distinctive classical design which survives almost completely intact. It is also important for its relationship with neighbouring Hassop Hall, formerly seat of the recusant Eyre family who built the church.

Hassop is a small village centred on Hassop Hall, which stands in its own grounds close to the church. The hall was the seat of the Eyre family, Earls of Newburgh. Francis Eyre succeeded to the title in 1814, and started to make plans for building a chapel almost immediately. The Eyres were recusants, and there was almost certainly a chapel in the hall, which was built in the early 17th century and substantially rebuilt in 1827-33. The architect of the chapel was Joseph Ireland, who worked for an almost exclusively Roman Catholic  clientele and  built a number  of  Catholic  churches  in England during the early 19th century. His pupil, J.J. Scoles, who went on to become a noted architect also specialising in Catholic churches, acted as clerk of works.   The church and presbytery were passed to the Diocese of Nottingham by the family.  The original presbytery was rebuilt during the 1890s. After several changes of ownership in the 20th  century, the hall was made into a hotel, in which use it remains.   The chapel, now All Saints church, has remained in use as a place of worship. The church was repaired and reordered by Smith & Roper (Bakewell) in the 1980s and 1990s. The reordering (1995) involved the introduction of a forward altar over an extended predella (covering part of the marble floor but leaving it intact) and opening up of the altar rails.

For a general description, see the listed building description below.  The building is windowless at the east end, and has two very simple unadorned projections on the north side, one containing a sacristy, the other the stair to the gallery.  These appear to be additions, but that housing the stair is probably a reworking of the original, perhaps when the presbytery was rebuilt. The stair is of stone, with a wreathed rail, open string and stick balusters, consistent with an early 19th century date.

The furnishings include a very elaborate Baroque-style altar and reredos brought from elsewhere. The piece was taken apart at the time of its introduction to the church and reassembled to form an altar and reredos, flanking pedestals for statues, and two (partially legible) mural tablets commemorating the Countess of Newburgh (d. 1853) and her brother. Statues of St Peter and St Paul flanking the altar were the gift  of  Lady  Anne  Newburgh  in  1841.  They  are  by  J.P.  Carew,  who  was  also responsible  for  a  memorial  to  Thomas  Eyre  (d.1833)  with  a  figure  of  faith  and portrait medallion on the south wall. A modern (1995) forward altar of solid oak hasbeen placed in front of the earlier altar.   The bench seating is of recent date, their design based on early or original pews which survived in the church.

The stained glass dates mainly from the 1890s. The windows are all very similar in style and execution, with figures, including a rendition of Raphael’s Sistine Madonna, in architectural surrounds. According to a typescript history, the Kitchin memorial window (the Virgin and St Anne) of 1898 was produced by Joshua Clarke of Dublin (father of the famous stained glass artist Harry Clarke), who probably did all the windows.

Heritage Details

Architect: Joseph Ireland, building supervised by J.J. Scoles

Original Date: 1816

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: I