Building » Hessle – Our Lady of Lourdes

Hessle – Our Lady of Lourdes

Swanland Road, Hessle, East Yorkshire

Post-war church of pre-war design. Attractive, albeit conventional in its planning, form and architectural expression.

Hessle is an ancient town to the west of Hull but is now joined to it by suburban development. In 1928 the Catholic priests from St Wilfrid in Hull began to say Mass in a room in Hessle Town Hall and then in an army hut in Oakland Drive. The site in Swanland Road was acquired before the Second World War and the church designed in 1939, but the war and the problems associated with obtaining a licence and building materials after the war meant that the foundation stone was not laid until 6 August 1950.


The church faces north but here all references follow conventional liturgical orientation.

The church is built of orange multi-stock brick with concrete dressings and a plain tile roof. It comprises a broad nave with narrow lean-to aisles, a southwest tower with pyramidal roof and a small polygonal sanctuary. The nave is wide and the gabled west front has, apart from a giant round arch enclosing both round-arched doorway and window above (three lights), has two-light mullioned windows in two tiers, altogether giving a quasi domestic appearance. Statue of Our Lady in a niche under the gable. The tower has a round-arched entrance to the south and slit windows in three tiers and tripartite louvred bell-openings. Aisles and clerestory have two-light mullioned windows. Longer single-light windows to the sanctuary.

The exterior hints at a round-arched Romanesque style more evident in the interior which has round-arched brick arcades with transverse arches to the passage aisles. And a stepped round sanctuary arch. There are no mouldings or imposts. Panelled front to the west gallery over an internal porch or narthex. Arched roof trusses on corbels, open to the apex. Most of the fittings and furnishings appear contemporary with the church and are not of special note. Stained glass in the centre light of the west window to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the church, artist not identified.

Heritage Details

Architect: Not established

Original Date: 1950

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not Listed