Melton Road, West Bridgford, Nottingham NG2
A modest building of the 1970s; the primary interest of the church lies in its internal decorative scheme of murals and stained glass.
Local tradition has it that Mass was said from 1897 at nearby Trent Lodge, served from St Patrick’s church in the city. In 1904 a site was acquired in Victoria Road, and in 1929, when Holy Spirit became an independent parish, work started on a new church, which opened in June 1930. The builder was F.J. Bradford of Leicester. Notes in the Diocesan archive describe this as ‘a miniature Romanesque church with Byzantine details’.
In 1972 the Bradford church was demolished and replaced with the present building by Reynolds & Scott. The earlier parish hall (1967, by Reynolds & Scott) was retained. The new church was designed to accommodate 360, with 250 in the nave and space for a further 110 in the day chapel, which was separated from the nave by sliding windows (since removed). The total cost was £70,000.
The church has a notable collection of dalle de verre stained glass and more recently has been dramatically embellished by wall paintings by Jennifer Bell.
The altar faces south but in this description conventional liturgical orientation is followed i.e. as if the altar faced east.
The main church is square on plan, with a parallel day chapel and Lady Chapel, narthex and sacristies. The construction is of load bearing brickwork with a steel framed roof rising to a slender copper fleche at the apex. The roof claddings are of copper and felt. Each elevation is gabled, with a triple window with pointed head towards each apex. Below this are a series of round arched window openings on the Melton Road elevation, with similar openings and an entrance on the Victoria Road elevation.
At the end of the narthex is a small baptistery area with timber font and the first of a series of dramatic wall paintings by Jennifer Bell of Campion Bell (photo bottom right). The main space of the church is a single square volume, with the day and Lady chapels giving off to the south, originally separated by a screen. The steelwork of the nave ceiling is clad with cedar wood boarding, as are the ceilings in the narthex and day chapel. A large organ dominates the north side.
The main features of the interior are the mural paintings and the stained glass. The paintings comprise:
• Crucifixion along the east wall behind the altar (photo middle right)
• Baptistery area (photo bottom right)
• Waterfalls/landscape scenes in Lady Chapel
The maker of the dalle de verre glass in the four triple high level windows has not been established (possibly John Hardman studios?) They depict:
• Pentecost (over the Sanctuary, photo bottom left)
• Christ and the four evangelists (west)
• The Last Supper (north, over the organ)
• Ascension (south)
There is also a suite of polished marble liturgical furnishings with inscribed gold lettering, of recent date.
Original Date: 1974
Conservation Area: Yes
Listed Grade: Not Listed