Building » Torquay (Chelston) – Holy Angels

Torquay (Chelston) – Holy Angels

Queensway, Chelston, Torquay, Devon

A small church, the main interest of which lies in the elaborate architectural elements, such as the main door surround and the handsome sanctuary arch. One of a series of churches built between the wars from designs by, or under the direction of Fr James Tymons.

The church was built to serve a new council housing estate built next to the old village of Chelston. The foundation stone was laid on 21 May 1938 and the building cost £3,590. It was the last of series of churches in the Diocese financed by Hilda and Edith Robinson, apparently designed by Fr James Tymons and built by Plasm & Co from Surrey (the others include The Blessed Sacrament in Exeter and St Paul Plymouth, qqv). The church was reordered in the 1980s; the windows were restored in 2001.


A small church built on a concrete base to level the sloping site, with wall facings of red brick laid in Flemish bond and roof coverings of copper. The church comprises nave and aisles with an elaborate two-storey porch or narthex, a northeast sacristy with a lean-to roof and a small sanctuary at the liturgical east end. The west front has a tall gabled central projection with a handsome and well-proportioned Doric doorcase (probably of concrete) with a stepped triplet of round-headed windows over. The centre is flanked by lower slide projections with a single small round-headed window and a hipped roof. The side walls have simple round-headed windows and a stepped brick cornice. The small sanctuary is windowless.

The interior was not inspected but photographs show a stepped triple arch dividing the nave and sanctuary, with round-headed arches on columns with Corinthian capitals. They also show a west gallery and that the sanctuary has a barrel roof while the nave has a pitched roof. Said to contain good stained glass windows (restored in 2001), Stations of the Cross carved by Ferdinand Stuflesser in the 1930s and an organ of 1939 by Hele & Co. of Saltash.

Heritage Details

Architect: Fr James Tymons

Original Date: 1938

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not Listed