Building » Waterloo – St Patrick

Waterloo – St Patrick

Cornwall Road, Waterloo, London SE1

A modest dual-purpose school-chapel of the late nineteenth century by F. A. Walters. The main frontage is in a simplified neo-Romanesque style and is a lively composition with some nice detail. The church and school make a positive contribution to the Waterloo conservation area. The interior contains no features or furnishings of particular note.

The church forms part of a school building built in 1897. Initially it was served from the Cathedral, but since 1964 the parish has been in the care of Friars. The architect was F.A. Walters, and his drawings are deposited in the RIBA Drawings Collection. These show that originally the chapel (which no doubt would have been for the school and for the local Catholic population) was proposed to be in a more convenient location on the ground floor. It is not quite clear why the chapel was subsequently placed on the upper floor. The earlier drawings also show a more ambitious scheme than that realised, with a tower.


Dual-purpose school and chapel built in 1897 from designs by F. A. Walters. The chapel is located on the first floor of the left hand range; there is also a western classroom range with a return elevation to Secker Street. The two ranges are connected by a lower link, set back behind a wall and railings, with a single storey lean-to structure in the recess. The buildings are of London stock brick, under slate roofs. The flank wall of the western range is rendered, presumably making good after the demolition of an adjoining building. The main elevation of the west range facing Cornwall Road consists of three narrow bays, with the outer bays projecting slightly and a gabled central bay. The right hand outer bay has an arched entrance at ground floor level, above this a blind arched recess containing a statue of St Patrick, and above this a blind oculus. The bay is topped by a raised bellcote (no bell). The right hand bay has a window opening containing a statue (St Peter?) with blind oculus above. The central bay contains a nicely detailed panel inscribed ‘1897 ST PATRICK’S CATHOLIC SCHOOLS’ in raised Arts and Crafts-style lettering with shamrocks. Above this a fixed crucifix and a circular window within a relieving arch.

The upper chapel is reached by a rather steep flight of stairs. It is a single space of six bays with a gallery at its (ritual) west end. The internal walls  are plastered and painted, and the roof is ceiled below collar level, with the lower part of the rafters and the collars exposed and painted black. It is lit by side windows with metal framed windows with opaque coloured glazing. There is a timber altar with painted timber reredos and attached crucifix. Oak benches. Plaster statues signed by Regall Bros.

Heritage Details

Architect: F. A. Walters

Original Date: 1897

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not Listed