Crich Common, Matlock, Derbyshire DE4
A modern Mass centre forming part of a residential centre opened in 1970. The core of the site is a much altered and extended pair of early 20th century stone cottages built by a local Quaker.
The Briars was acquired for use as a Diocesan residential centre in 1969, opening in
1970. The house had been built in 1910 by the Quaker George Smith as a pair of semi- detached cottages for two of his daughters, but from 1917 had been run as a Quaker and Vegetarian Guest House. It was extended in 1935. Along with the original house, the Diocese acquired an adjacent house, Robin Hill, a bungalow, garage and grounds. The original building survives, though it has been greatly extended and completely
altered inside. The incremental extensions are by Smith & Roper, architects and surveyors. Amongst these is the chapel, built in 1979. It connects with a hall, and the two spaces can be thrown together when required.
The building complex consists of the original guesthouse of random coursed rubble which has been extended with buildings of traditional form finished in render. Buildings around a courtyard are finished in stone and brick. The chapel is centrally planned with a rough stone altar beneath a skylight (now closed up) and walls finished in hardwood panelling and plaster. One window has non-figurative stained glass in fluid patterns. A stone within the space was blessed by Pope John Paul II in Cardiff in 1982.
Original Date: 1910
Conservation Area: Yes
Listed Grade: Not Listed