Building » Lyndhurst – Our Lady of the Assumption and St Edward the Confessor

Lyndhurst – Our Lady of the Assumption and St Edward the Confessor

Empress Road, Lyndhurst, Hants

A compact Victorian Gothic church by a prominent church architect (although not one known as a designer of Catholic churches), with scholarly architectural detailing. The church was built by M. Edouard Souberbielle as a memorial to his wife. It occupies a prominent corner site in the Lyndhurst Conservation Area. 

Lyndhurst Catholics worshipped at Lymington until the building of the present church. The site was purchased and the building paid for by a Frenchman, M. Edouard Souberbielle, in memory of his wife Marie Louise, who died at Lyndhurst in 1894. She is buried in the mausoleum attached to the east end of the church. Souberbielle himself later remarried and is not buried with his first wife, as he had originally intended.


A church of modest size in the English Decorated style, built of Purbeck stone with Chilmark stone dressings and roof coverings of red tiles. The architect was Sir Arthur Blomfield, an unusual Catholic commission for him. The church comprises an aisleless nave and chancel under one roof with a projecting porch in the base of a small octagonal tower at the liturgical west end. The tower has a spire. The west gable wall has a lean-to narthex passage across the full width of the building, connecting to a passage leading to the presbytery. Above the narthex is a broad window of five stepped lights. The nave is of two bays with three lancet windows in each and no clerestorey. The chancel has on the liturgical north side two two-light windows with a quatrefoil in the head and on the south side three lancets above a lower projecting sacristy with a twin-ridged roof. Extending from the east end is a lower building in the same style which is the mausoleum of Marie Souberbielle and contains her large stone tomb-slab. Above the mausoleum in the east gable of the chancel is a round window.

Interior with stone walls, mosaic floor and boarded timber boat roof. The nave walls have plain window openings, those in the chancel have Purbeck jamb-shafts. On the north side of the chancel is an Easter Sepulchre arch and on the south side two large trefoil arches, one with a door leading to the sacristy. Fittings include the original altar, now brought forward, stained glass in all windows including the eastern roundel and a large modern reredos painting by Paul Natter.

Entry amended by AHP 26.12.2020

List description


Roman Catholic church. 1896 by Sir Arthur Blomfield for M Edouard Souberbielle. Squared rough-faced Purbeck stone, Chilmark dressings, plain tile roof. Plan of Nave and Chancel in one, east separate Lady Chapel to endower’s wife, north-west porch and tower, west lean-to to nave, in Decorated style. Gabled low east projection with pointed east door and wrought-iron gates. Above it pointed 3-light east window. Sides have buttresses between bays. East bay has paired 2-light pointed windows with cinquefoils in heads. Buttress to west surmounted by statue under canopy. Other bays have 3 pointed lancets. Moulded sill string. Porch has pointed door and buttresses surmounted by gablets at each end of gable. Behind gable is octagonal turret with canopied niche or pointed lancet, then bellstage with pointed louvred opening on each face and shingled spire. To west under with pointed arch 5 stepped lancets. Under is lean-to with lancets and parapet with walls at each end of roof and buttresses. Inside chancel has Purbeck shafts to rear arches. Reredos has fresco by Paul Natter.   Listing NGR: SU2963407409

Heritage Details

Architect: Sir Arthur Blomfield

Original Date: 1896

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Grade II