Building » Heywood – Our Lady and St Paul

Heywood – Our Lady and St Paul

Argyle Street, Heywood OL10

A church built to serve a post-war housing estate. The originally ambitious design was considerably simplified in execution and the present building is slightly forbidding in its austerity.

Darnhill on the outskirts of Heywood was designated a Manchester overspill area in the later 1950s. Most of the development, including nine now-demolished tower blocks, took place in the early 1960s. A conspicuous site was allocated for the church at the junction of two minor roads and services were at first held in the nearby school. In 1964 the architects Mather & Nutter prepared an ambitious and rather mannered design for a new church with a steeply-sloping roof and an entrance atrium with a screen wall rising to a pinnacle. A starkly modernist presbytery was attached. The walls of both buildings were to be covered with Tyrolean render. In the event the presbytery was built as designed in 1966 but the church followed after in much simplified form.


The present church is a rectangular blockhouse. The external walls are of grey industrial brick faced with render which is now also grey in colour and detaching from the wall in places. The building has an overall steel pitched roof. On the liturgical west side a covered walkway leads to a low windowless projecting vestibule. Along the top of the exposed west and south walls is a continuous row of small slit windows. The other walls are blind. On the east side is a link to the presbytery. The interior has not been inspected.

Heritage Details

Architect: Mather & Nutter

Original Date: 1967

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not Listed