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Listed Building
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Bath and North East Somerset (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:
ST 75058 65017


BROAD STREET (East side) Church of St Michael 12/06/50


Includes: WALCOT STREET, Church of St Michael Church. 1835-1837, interior remodelled 1901. By GP Manners, interior remodelling by Wallace Gill. MATERIALS: Limestone ashlar with slate roofs. STYLE: Early English. PLAN: Rectangular aisled plan with projecting tower to south, four bays to east side including shallow transept, five bays to west. On peninsular site that slopes down to south. EXTERIOR: Moulded coped parapet with semicircular arches over trefoil headed recesses. Cornice with a leaf chevron frieze and trefoil arched corbel table with turned pendants and moulded plinth. East side articulated by buttresses chamfered above plinth and set back at quoins with five deeply cut weathered marks at window impost level and gabled below tall spirelet pinnacles. Pointed arched triple windows with taller lights to centres have rounded capitals to colonnettes and leaded lights with some stained glass. North transept has two light window to each return. Three stage tower has octagonal spire with crocketed gables to lower half of each facet which have pierced trefoils to apexes and two light openings below pierced quatrefoils. Parapet of pierced trefoils in triangular panels over similar frieze and corbel table to aisles. Pierced rose window to second stage over frieze of quatrefoils in diagonally set square panels flanked by deep weathering similar to those below. Tall south window to front of tower similar to those of aisles with moulded stringcourse at impost level. Sloping site necessitates double plinth, to aisles sill course and similar thickly moulded plinth spans infills with canted corners to each side of tower. Infill stair turrets have smaller buttresses to angles, two light windows with impost and sill stringcourses, steps up to pointed arches over planked doors with ornamental hinges and lancet windows to returns. West side similar to that of east without transept but with single storey entrance bay to left with similar parapet, door etc. North chancel end has full height canted bay. INTERIOR: Comprises west tower, polyganally set east and west porches nave and aisles, sanctuary and polygonal apse. The aisles are the same height as the nave, a `hall church¿, (cf. Bristol Cathedral) to accommodate galleries, removed with the pews and pulpit in the later re-ordering. The arcades are formed of tall slender circular piers, each with four attached shafts. The ceiling has quadripartite plaster rib vaulting, the polygonal apse blank arcading. There are numerous wall monuments (including several to the Blair family, with fine martial reliefs) now concentrated at the (liturgical) west end. There is also an organ of 1847 by Sweetland. HISTORY: This is the fourth church to have stood on this spot, just outside the former city walls: the present building replaces a classical church of 1741-43 by John Harvey, seating 500, with a distinctive dome-capped tower. The expansion of Walcot parish, together with liturgical considerations, prompted the building of the present church, which seated 780 and cost £6,000. Manners's design was based on the retro-choir of Salisbury Cathedral. Consecrated on 4th January 1837, the church formerly had galleries: these were removed (along with Manners's pulpit and pews) during a major re-ordering in 1889. FITTINGS: These include canvasses from the mid-C18 altar-piece, depicting Moses (by Robinson of London) and Christ with the Cross (by William Hoare RA); numerous wall monuments (including several to the Blair family, with fine martial reliefs) now concentrated at the (liturgical) west end; an organ of 1847 by Sweetland; an opulent High Victorian sanctuary; and bench pews with Free Gothic bench-ends. St Michael's is a notable example of a pre-Pugin Gothic Revival church, erected before the preoccupation with archaeological correctness took hold of ecclesiastical architects. It possesses great townscape value externally, by dint of its scale, siting, its lofty proportions, its decorative consistency and its overall Romantic conception. The interior is of very high quality and survives in fine condition. SOURCES: N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England: North Somerset and Bristol (1958), 107; N. Jackson, Nineteenth Century Bath - Architects and Architecture (1991), 135; B. Cunliffe, The City of Bath (1986), 148; J. Lees-Milne and D. Ford, Images of Bath(1982). M. Forsyth, Pevsner Architectural Guides (2003), 130.

Listing NGR: ST7505865017


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This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

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