St John's Close, Mildenhall, Suffolk, IP28 7NX
A plain multipurpose brick design of 1980, within a post-war housing estate.
Mildenhall expanded in the 1960s and 1970s with London overspill housing in new estates, designed by architects of the Greater London Council. The present church was built in 1980 within such an estate, from designs by Marshall Sisson Architect of Hemingford Grey (job architect Julian Limentani). The approximate cost was £120,000. The design was described in the Catholic Building Review:
The plan arrived at is one that allows for multi-purpose use of the church if required. The narthex is large and almost square so the possible ways of using it […] are almost limitless. The sanctuary is on a dais which can be moved to any part of the church. Part of the narthex can be closed off with a folding partition to form a weekday chapel at one end, leaving the rest free for other activities.
The church is part of the combined Brandon and Mildenhall parish, served from Brandon (qv).
A large multipurpose hall-type building, steel framed and clad with multi-stock brick with red brick detail, under a pantile roof. A gabled porch with hardwood doors marks the main entrance. At the sides, the six bays are separated by brick piers, with round-arched windows in four of the bays. The rear elevation is more plainly treated.
The interior has not been inspected, but a plan of the building shows a kitchen and WCs on either side of an entrance lobby, leading into the main worship space, which is roughly square on plan. Beyond this, doors lead to a meeting room and sacristy. A photograph from the Suffolk Churches website shows walls of bare brick, and a flat boarded and stained ceiling. The sanctuary has timber furnishings and the seating consists of plastic stackable chairs. The only furnishing of note appears to be the large organ, c.1950, with ‘an impressive pitchpine case from a Sweetland (Bath) organ, c.1890’ (BIOS Organ Register), provenance not established.
Architect: Marshall Sisson Architect
Original Date: 1980
Conservation Area: No
Listed Grade: Not Listed