Christ Church


The church is built of Bulwell stone with a slate roof, as is the choir vestry, which was added in 1902. But the four arches of the north aisle rest on octagonal piers of Ancaster stone. In 1855 the Duke of Newcastle had laid the foundation stone, but all the wording has now been eroded. In extent the church is of the following dimensions: nave 62ft x 21ft, aisle 52ft x 9ft, chancel 25ft x 17ft, and the height of the nave 42ft. Originally the roof was painted deep blue. There is also a small vicar’s vestry in the north east corner.

The space within the altar rails was paved with Minton tiles and the original reredos composed similarly to give a brilliant mosaic effect. In 1898 there was a Faculty to take up the existing brick floor of the chancel and to replace it with glazed tiles also. The choir seats and desks, reading desk and lectern, all of common deal and iron were replaced by ones in carved oak, except for the lectern which was in the form of a brass eagle. The Lord’s Table was to be raised one step and enlarged. All these alterations were the gift of George Fowler, churchwarden. A new litany desk was given by the Rev L M Farrall, a relative of the incumbent.

About this time the first reredos was covered by the present one in wood, ornate and richly carved and painted. However the four panels of the Evangelists which were once part of it were removed and fitted to the north wall of the aisle in 1965. At the same time a Faculty of 18th May 1965 reveals that a new oak altar was to be fitted in a recess in the east end wall of the sanctuary and the old altar to be set in the north aisle, the reredos to be set on a dais and a shelf fixed for a credence table. Thus the side chapel was formed in the north aisle and six old pews that faced south were removed and instead three new oak pews were installed facing east. (In 1957 when the original stone pulpit was removed a pew in front of it and two in front of the organ chamber were taken out and stored in the Church Hall.)

The Hidden Texts

Paint now completely covers Minton tiles and biblical texts which originally were part of the overall design of the church. Instead of the ordinary hood moulding the four arches forming the arcade between nave and aisle were neatly finished by Minton’s encaustic tiles. Over the chancel arch was emblazoned in medieval lettering, on a fillet, in illuminated gold colours the text:

Glory to God in the highest: on earth peace and good will toward men.

This information comes from W W Fyfe. He goes on to write:

The east wall of the chancel is in like manner illuminated and inscribed with a fillet bearing instead of the Old Testament Decalogue the condensed form of the Commandments given in the New Testament by Jesus Christ:

“Jesus said - Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind: this is the first and great Commandment. And the second is like unto it - Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two Commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” Mat. xxii, 37-40.

One section of this text is inscribed on the north, and the remainder, or continuation, in a similar manner, on the south of the east wall of the chancel.

Unhappily these features were obliterated many years ago, probably in the 1960s.

The priest’s doorway in the south wall of the sanctuary has been blocked up. Only one metal cross is left on the roof (out of three) after an incendiary bomb fell on the building on Good Friday 1941.