Building » Kinsley – Our Lady of Graces

Kinsley – Our Lady of Graces

Wakefield Road, Kinsley, Hemsworth, West Yorkshire

A plain red brick rectangular building with little architectural decoration, but with some interesting modern secondary glazing by a local artist.

A mission was established in 1918 and a ‘tin tabernacle’ opened, apparently on the site of the present large tarmac area to the north of the present church. The present church and presbytery were built in 1938, following the creation of the parish of Kinsley and Ackworth in recognition of the larger population here. Sometime in the early 1990s the two western bays of the nave were partitioned off to create a parish room. Shortly afterwards, a parishioner artist created the coloured windows and the priest Fr Bill Burtoft began the mosaic work that decorates altars and furniture here and at Ackworth.

In 2004, the parish was amalgamated with Sacred Heart, Hemsworth (a post-1980 church and therefore not included in this review) and is served from there. A retired priest lives in the presbytery.


The church is on a north west/south east axis, but liturgical compass points are used throughout this report.

The church is built of Fletton-type mottled red brick with blue engineering brick for some quoins and the plinth and cast stone copings to the gables. It was perhaps intended to be pebble dashed like some of the surrounding housing. The roof is tiled and there are metal windows.  The presbytery is of local red brick and red tiles and has had its windows replaced with uPVC recently. The rectangular six bay nave has paired ten-pane windows to each bay, separated by brick buttresses.

There is a single-storey polygonal west narthex with the west door flanked by square windows on the diagonal walls, all with white painted cast stone lintels (that to the double wooden doors projecting a little). There is no west window but a large white cross is mounted above the narthex and a stone cross sits at the apex (another is at the apex of the east gable). The lower square chancel has another pair of ten-pane windows north and south; the transverse sacristy links on at the southwest corner and there is a short link into the presbytery off the east end.

The church is entered through a two-bay parish room created by erecting a full height wall with a double door entry. This wall is plastered, unlike the rest of the nave; the chancel is also plastered. The roof was ceiled in the early 1990s, having previously been open to the ridge. The steel trusses are encased in painted timber. The round chancel arch is plastered but without mouldings and the chancel roof beyond is ceiled at the level of the low collar. There is an underground chamber beneath the chancel and sacristy, built for the boiler and coal store.

The altar dedicated to Our Lady is at the northeast corner of the nave and  was covered in mosaic c.1990-95 by the then priest, Fr Bill Burtoft. The original panelled wooden high altar is now placed against the south nave wall at the southeast corner, serving as the altar of the Sacred Heart. All the nave windows have had secondary glazing added in coloured leaded glass to abstract designs by an artist/parishioner, Liz Salter. These leaded panels seem to have been soldered on to the metal frames as the original plain glass still exists externally.

Heritage Details

Architect: Empsall, Clarkson & Clarke

Original Date: 1938

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not Listed