Heys Street, Thornton FY5 4HL
While not of the same townscape or design quality as Pugin and Pugin’s later church at Ansdell, the church and presbytery are buildings of some architectural quality by a well-known firm.
The church was built at the instigation of Canon James Taylor, rector of Lytham, in 1899. The architect was Peter Paul Pugin of Pugin and Pugin, a practice which had worked for the Taylor brothers at St Anne’s on Sea and would do so again later at Ansdell. A major benefactor was Mrs Waterton of Alson Hall near Preston. Church, school and presbytery were all built at the same time. The parish hall (now in separate use) lies to the north, and was built later by the men of the parish.
Like the later church at Ansdell (listed Grade II), the church is built of yellow sandstone with red sandstone dressings. There is a tall west tower of three stages with a crenellated parapet. The interior is not of the same scale or quality of detail as the Pugins’ church at Ansdell but is still an impressive space with some good detailing and furnishings. On plan it consists of a wide nave with western gallery and a short sanctuary flanked by side chapels. Elaborate high altar with saints under canopies; glass in the traceried widow above. Original altars also in side chapels. There is a circular stone forward altar, fashioned from a mill stone, and modern sculptured figures on either side of the sanctuary arch. Altar rails still in situ, said by Fr Branford to be a World War I memorial.
The church is linked to the presbytery, which is contemporary with the church. A modern parish room, the Bamber Room, has been built in front of the link.
Architect: Pugin & Pugin
Original Date: 1899
Conservation Area: No
Listed Grade: Not Listed