Building » Rothwell – St Bernadette

Rothwell – St Bernadette

Hill, Rothwell, Northants National

The 1959 church, though modest, was of distinctive design. 1993 alterations have radically altered the appearance, to its detriment.

From 1951 Mass was said at various locations in Rothwell until there were sufficient funds to build a church. These were very limited, and St Bernadette’s was built using volunteer labour as far as possible. It was built to seat 140, and the final cost was £3,763 0s 8d. The cost of the fittings, including the sanctuary rails, reredos, an altar of local stone, font and a stained glass window was about £400. The church was opened and blessed by Bishop Parker on June 19, 1959.

The church was considerably altered in 1993, when a porch was added and the entire main roof altered from a butterfly plan to a conventional longitudinal pitch.


St  Bernadette’s church sits in an elevated  position, set back from Rock Hill and Glendon Road. It is built of brick with a slate roof and comprises nave and sanctuary in one, with ancillary spaces contained with a lower, aisle-like, attachment on the south side. The west front (altered in 1993) has a large glazed area between a trio of stepped pilasters. The north side has small high level windows, an external door and added buttresses. The south side has similar windows at high level and a much larger window lighting the sanctuary. Prominent gabled south porch (dating from 1993), over-scaled compared to the rest of the church, presumably to give emphasis. There is a high level window in the east gable and a prominent vent extract  over the sanctuary.

The interior is of painted brick with flat buttresses and a flat ceiling. There is no division between nave and sanctuary other than a deeper buttress on either side. Kitchen, confessional and sacristy run along the south side, ending in the porch, which gives access to a WC. The east wall of the sanctuary is painted to reflect the window pattern of the west wall. The font is of stone, panelled and octagonal and probably older and brought from elsewhere. The Stations of the Cross appear to be of coloured glass in oak frames. The mahogany benches are original. The foundation stone is set in the wall on the north side of the sanctuary.

Heritage Details

Architect: Gotch, Saunders & Surridge

Original Date: 1959

Conservation Area: No

Listed Grade: Not Listed