Demolition and the future of the site...
The Pastoral Scheme for St Elisabeth’s old church has now come into effect. This is the legal document that gives permission for its demolition. This is the demolition of the old church, not the old vicarage as that is seen as a separate site and while the site will be sold as a whole, the pastoral scheme only affects the old church.
DEMOLITION BEGAN ON MONDAY 16TH MARCH AND IS EXPECTED TO NOW FINISH BY THE END OF 2020.
A team of specialists have removed the murals from the crypt of the old churchwhich are now being stored off-site.
The site is surrounded by wooden hoardings, allowing us to still use the footpath to the lower hall. Access from Baldwin Avenue is blocked off.
We have created 5 parking bays which have been allocated to individuals (hall hirers and church community) according to their needs. There will be a "drop off zone" for the nursery, deliveries and taxis etc. All those who have been allocated a space have been informed of the time and date their space is reserved. All other cars (unless using the disabled space and displaying blue badge) will need to park on the road.
What will be built on the site, we do not yet know, although, it will probably be housing. The church has reiterated that we need an area for car parking so that Centre users do not need to park on local roads. We do not know how long redevelopment will take.
It is amazing that we are finally at this point and although it will be an emotional time we are excited that this challenging chapter is finally drawing to a close. As we get more information, we will update the website further.
St Elisabeth`s Church was built in 1938 to the designs of local architects Stonham & Sons and Fenning.
It was built at the request of Elisa Watson whose legacy paid for the church`s erection on this site (land gifted by The Duke of Devonshire)
The original church building, which is set for demolition in 2020, once contained chancel paintings by the art historian and conservator, Ernest William Tristram (1882-1952). Now housed in the current church building next door, the Tristram Panels depict the life of John the Baptist and his parents, the priest Zacharias and his wife Elizabeth. In addition, St Elisabeth`s crypt contained a series of large wall paintings by the artist Hans Feibusch (1898-1998). These murals have been removed and are being stored off-site.
Feinbusch came to the attention of Charles Herbert Reilly, professor of architecture and George Bell, who provided himwith the opportunity to create a mural of his own design at St Elisabeth`s in 1944. Feibusch chose the allegory of Pilgrim`s Progress as a vehicle for his own story as a refugee fleeing Nazi Germany and his eventual acceptance in 1940s Britain. Feibusch enlisted the help of local people to complete the mural, which is now a registered War Memorial dedicated to civilian casualties of war.
The "New" Church
Despite moving across from the old church in 2002 our church is still thought of as the "new" church. Since the move across we have grown to become a thriving hub of worshippers and community groups. Navigate around this site to see all the amazing stuff we do!