Building » Wye, Ashford – St Ambrose (Chapel of Ease)

Wye, Ashford – St Ambrose (Chapel of Ease)

St Ambrose Green, off Oxenturn Road, Wye, Kent

A modest 1950s building of utilitarian character and of no special architectural or historic note. Fittings include the pews from E. W. Pugin’s demolished church of St Teresa, Ashford.

During World War II the army occupied Wye College and Catholic Mass was said by the army chaplain there. Subsequently Fr Leonard Whatmore said Mass in the stable chapel of the Old Vicarage in Bridge Street, owned by his mother. In the late 1940s the Diocese purchased Mrs Whatmore’s house. In 1954 the present church of St Ambrose was built, probably as a dual-purpose church and hall.

 

A utilitarian rectangular structure built of Fletton bricks with a concrete tile roof. Flat-roofed projections on the north side, one the sacristy, the other the porch and lavatory.  A Celtic cross on the west gable is the only external indication that this is a church. Plain horizontal windows on the north and south sides, set high up, under soldier   course   lintels.   Metal   framed   casements   with   leaded   lights.   One   tall rectangular window at the east end and three smaller windows at the west end, the outer ones blocked. The interior is plastered and painted. The trusses are boxed in and painted to match the walls and underside of the roof; the effect is somewhat claustrophobic. Victorian pine pews from E. W. Pugin’s demolished church of St Teresa, Ashford. The east end was altered in 1973 when a recess was created in the wall for the tabernacle. Two, possibly 18th-century, benches are placed to either side of the sanctuary and came from the chapel at Calehill House, Little Chart which served the district prior to the building of St Teresa’s, Ashford. Bronze crucifix mounted on a wooden cross. 19th-century Stations of the Cross, possibly from St Teresa’s, are quite elaborate but probably from a catalogue. There is a chamber organ at the west end.

Heritage Details

Architect: Not established

Original Date: 1954

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Not Listed