Upper Brook Street Chapel, Manchester

Last updated

Upper Brook Street Chapel
Upper Brook Street Chapel 2017 006.jpg
The chapel in 2017
Religion
Affiliation Unitarian, then Baptist, then Jehovah's Witness, then Islamic
District Chorlton-on-Medlock
Location
LocationUpper Brook Street, Manchester, England
Geographic coordinates 53°28′9.44″N2°13′53.28″W / 53.4692889°N 2.2314667°W / 53.4692889; -2.2314667 Coordinates: 53°28′9.44″N2°13′53.28″W / 53.4692889°N 2.2314667°W / 53.4692889; -2.2314667
Architecture
Architect(s) Sir Charles Barry
Style Neogothic
Groundbreaking1837
Completed1839

The Upper Brook Street Chapel, also known as the Islamic Academy, the Unitarian Chapel and the Welsh Baptist Chapel, is a former chapel with an attached Sunday School on the east side of Upper Brook Street, Chorlton-on-Medlock, Greater Manchester, England. It is said to be the first neogothic Nonconformist chapel, having been constructed for the British Unitarians between 1837 and 1839, at the very beginning of the reign of Queen Victoria. It was designed by Sir Charles Barry, later architect of the Palace of Westminster.

Chapel Religious place of fellowship attached to a larger institution

A chapel is a Christian place of prayer and worship that is usually relatively small, and is distinguished from a church. The term has several senses. Firstly, smaller spaces inside a church that have their own altar are often called chapels; the Lady Chapel is a common type of these. Secondly, a chapel is a place of worship, sometimes non-denominational, that is part of a building or complex with some other main purpose, such as a school, college, hospital, palace or large aristocratic house, castle, barracks, prison, funeral home, cemetery, airport, or a military or commercial ship. Thirdly, chapels are small places of worship, built as satellite sites by a church or monastery, for example in remote areas; these are often called a chapel of ease. A feature of all these types is that often no clergy were permanently resident or specifically attached to the chapel. Finally, for historical reasons, chapel is also often the term used for independent or nonconformist places of worship in Great Britain—outside the established church, even where in practice they operate as a parish church.

Chorlton-on-Medlock inner city area of Manchester, England

Chorlton-on-Medlock is an inner city area of Manchester, England.

Greater Manchester County of England

Greater Manchester is a metropolitan county and combined authority area in North West England, with a population of 2.8 million. It encompasses one of the largest metropolitan areas in the United Kingdom and comprises ten metropolitan boroughs: Bolton, Bury, Oldham, Rochdale, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, Wigan, and the cities of Manchester and Salford. Greater Manchester was created on 1 April 1974 as a result of the Local Government Act 1972, and designated a functional city region on 1 April 2011.

Contents

A listed building since 3 October 1974 (currently Grade II*), it is owned by Manchester City Council and was on the Buildings at Risk Register, rated as "very bad". It was partially demolished in 2006. The Victorian Society placed the building on a list of ten most threatened buildings in England and Wales. It was restored and converted to student accommodation in 2017 by Buttress Architects.

Listed building Protected historic structure in the United Kingdom

A listed building, or listed structure, is one that has been placed on one of the four statutory lists maintained by Historic England in England, Historic Environment Scotland in Scotland, Cadw in Wales, and the Northern Ireland Environment Agency in Northern Ireland.

Manchester City Council Local government body in England

Manchester City Council is the local government authority for Manchester, a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. It is composed of 96 councillors, three for each of the 32 electoral wards of Manchester. The council is controlled by the Labour Party and led by Sir Richard Leese. The opposition is formed by the Liberal Democrats and led by former Manchester Withington MP John Leech. Joanne Roney is the chief executive. Many of the council's staff are based at Manchester Town Hall.

History

Architecture

The chapel was designed by Sir Charles Barry, [1] shortly before he designed the Palace of Westminster (Houses of Parliament). It was constructed between 1837 and 1839 out of sandstone, with a slate roof. It is in English neogothic style. The building has seven narrow bays, with buttresses and a lancet in each bay. The west end has a giant moulded archway, with an arched doorway at the ground floor with a window above. On the east end there is a rose window. The corners are square, with pinnacles. The inside of the chapel had galleries on three sides, and a ribbed, vaulted ceiling. The attached two-storey Sunday School is in the same style as the chapel, and has a triple-gabled north side, with large arched windows on the first floor. It also has a canted apse on the west end, and a lean-to porch.

Charles Barry English architect

Sir Charles BarryFRS RA was an English architect, best known for his role in the rebuilding of the Palace of Westminster in London during the mid-19th century, but also responsible for numerous other buildings and gardens. He is known for his major contribution to the use of Italianate architecture in Britain, especially the use of the Palazzo as basis for the design of country houses, city mansions and public buildings. He also developed the Italian Renaissance garden style for the many gardens he designed around country houses.

Palace of Westminster Meeting place of the Parliament of the United Kingdom,

The Palace of Westminster serves as the meeting place of the House of Commons and the House of Lords, the two houses of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Commonly known as the Houses of Parliament after its occupants, the Palace lies on the north bank of the River Thames in the City of Westminster, in central London, England.

Sandstone A clastic sedimentary rock composed mostly of sand-sized particles

Sandstone is a clastic sedimentary rock composed mainly of sand-sized mineral particles or rock fragments.

The building marked a charge in the style of Nonconformist worship locations. Previously these were mostly built with brick, and were plain, with the grander tending towards Greek architecture. Said to be the first neogothic Nonconformist chapel, Manchester's Unitarian Chapel was preceded by the Congregational Chapel in March, Cambridgeshire, [2] which was constructed in 1836 and is also in the neogothic style. Chapels built following the construction of these two resembled parish churches more than the former style. [3]

Brick Block or a single unit of a ceramic material used in masonry construction

A brick is building material used to make walls, pavements and other elements in masonry construction. Traditionally, the term brick referred to a unit composed of clay, but it is now used to denote rectangular units made of clay-bearing soil, sand, and lime, or concrete materials. Bricks can be joined together using mortar, adhesives or by interlocking them. Bricks are produced in numerous classes, types, materials, and sizes which vary with region and time period, and are produced in bulk quantities. Two basic categories of bricks are fired and non-fired bricks.

Nonconformist Protestant Christians in Wales and England who did not follow the Church of England

In English church history, a Nonconformist was a Protestant who did not "conform" to the governance and usages of the established Church of England. Broad use of the term was precipitated after the Restoration of the British monarchy in 1660, when the Act of Uniformity 1662 re-established the opponents of reform within the Church of England. By the late 19th century the term specifically included the Reformed Christians, plus the Baptists and Methodists. The English Dissenters such as the Puritans who violated the Act of Uniformity 1559—typically by practising radical, sometimes separatist, dissent—were retrospectively labelled as Nonconformists.

March, Cambridgeshire Town and civil parish in Cambridgeshire, England

March is a Fenland market town and civil parish in the Isle of Ely area of Cambridgeshire, England. It was the county town of the Isle of Ely which was a separate administrative county from 1889 to 1965. It is now the administrative centre of Fenland District Council.

The building was listed on 3 October 1974, and is currently classed as Grade II*. [1]

Occupancy

Unitarians

The chapel was originally constructed for the Unitarians. It replaced the Mosley Street Chapel (built 1789, [4] demolished 1836 [5] ) upon its completion for baptisms, burials and marriages. [6] The chapel was used for burial rites [7] until 1882, the chapel had a graveyard from the outset, to both the north and south sides of the chapel. Restrictions were placed on this in 1856 and prohibited in 1882 except for the removal of remains from graves on the north side to brick vaults on the south side of the chapel.[ citation needed ] Baptisms were performed until at least 1912, and marriages until at least 1916. [7]

Unitarianism is a Christian theological movement named for its belief that the God in Christianity is one person, as opposed to the Trinity which in many other branches of Christianity defines God as three persons in one being: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Unitarian Christians, therefore, believe that Jesus was inspired by God in his moral teachings, and he is a savior, but he was not a deity or God incarnate. As is typical of dissenters, Unitarianism does not constitute one single Christian denomination, but rather refers to a collection of both extant and extinct Christian groups, whether historically related to each other or not, which share a common theological concept of the oneness nature of God.

Mosley Street street in Manchester, United Kingdom

Mosley Street is a street in Manchester, England. It runs between its junction with Piccadilly Gardens and Market Street to St Peter's Square. Beyond St Peter's Square it becomes Lower Mosley Street. It is the location of several Grade II and Grade II* listed buildings.

Ministers at the chapel include John James Tayler (until 1853), [4] William Henry Herford (1866–70), [8] Philip Wicksteed (circa 1890), [9] John Trevor (1890–91, left to start The Labour Church) [5] [10] and Edward Walker Sealy (1910-???). [8]

Other denominations

The chapel was sold in 1928 due to changes in the district, [5] and was subsequently used as a Welsh Baptist Chapel. [1] The chapel was then used as a Jehovah's Witnesses Kingdom Hall in the early 1970s. [11] The building has been owned by Manchester City Council since the 1970s, [12] who purchased land alongside Upper Brook Street with the aim of constructing a large motorway into Manchester, which was never realised. [13]

Both the chapel and Sunday School were occupied by the Islamic Academy of Manchester between 1974 and 2006, when it was used as a mosque, teaching centre and for outreach work in the Asian community. [14]

Dereliction and rebirth

The chapel without its roof in 2008 Upper Brook Street Chapel 9.jpg
The chapel without its roof in 2008
The Chapel being redeveloped in 2017 Upper Brook Street Chapel 2017 002.jpg
The Chapel being redeveloped in 2017

By the beginning of the 21st century, the future of the building was looking increasingly uncertain. [15] The chapel had become unsafe, and substantial money was needed for emergency repairs. [14] An unsuccessful bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund for funding to repair the building was made by the Islamic Academy in 2003. In 2001 and 2005 the City Council commissioned structural advice regarding the building, prior to removing most of the roof, with the agreement of English Heritage. [12]

Parts of the chapel were demolished at the start of 2006 on safety grounds, with scaffolding holding up some other sections. By 2010 the chapel was on the Buildings at Risk Register, rated as "very bad". [16] The Victorian Society placed it on a list of ten most threatened buildings in England and Wales. [17]

In October 2010 Manchester City Council announced that it was in discussion with a developer to renovate the building and bring it back into use. [13] In August 2013 the council received a planning application from the Church Converts (Manchester) to repair the building and convert it into apartments; the application was granted in February 2014. [18] The redevelopment by CZero Developments consists of 73 private apartments in both the chapel and the Sunday school. [19]

From September 2017, the building has been operating as student accommodation, with a gym, cinema room, study areas and a lounge. [20]

See also

Related Research Articles

The General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches is the umbrella organisation for Unitarian, Free Christians and other liberal religious congregations in the United Kingdom and Ireland. It was formed in 1928, with denominational roots going back to the Great Ejection of 1662. Its headquarters building is Essex Hall in central London, on the site of the first avowedly Unitarian chapel in England, set up in 1774.

Gamlingay village in the United Kingdom

Gamlingay is a village and civil parish in South Cambridgeshire, England, near the border with Bedfordshire, and the traditional county of Huntingdonshire. It is 14 miles (22 km) from Cambridge and the population in 2011 was 4,900 people.

Cross Street Chapel church in United Kingdom

Cross Street Chapel is a Unitarian church in central Manchester, England. It is a member of the General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches, the umbrella organisation for British Unitarians. Its present minister is Cody Coyne.

Dissenting Gothic

Dissenting Gothic is an architectural style associated with English Dissenters, that is, Protestants not affiliated with the Church of England. It is a distinctive style in its own right within Gothic Revival architecture that emerged primarily in Britain, its colonies and North America, during the nineteenth century.

West Street Baptist Church, East Grinstead Church in West Sussex , United Kingdom

West Street Baptist Church is a Baptist church in East Grinstead, a town in the district of Mid Sussex, one of seven local government districts in the English county of West Sussex. Founded in 1810 as a chapel linked to the Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion, it was the first Nonconformist place of worship in East Grinstead; the town's subsequent development made it a local centre of both Protestant Nonconformity and alternative religions. The red-brick building is still used by a Baptist community, and is protected as a Grade II listed building.

Southover General Baptist Chapel Church in East Sussex , United Kingdom

Southover General Baptist Chapel is a former Baptist place of worship in the ancient village of Southover, now part of the town and district of Lewes, one of six local government districts in the English county of East Sussex. Founded in 1741 as the first Baptist place of worship in the area, it attracted a congregation of General Baptists whose theological views gradually moved towards Unitarianism. This led to their union with the members of the nearby Westgate Chapel, after which the flint and brick building housed other congregations and secular groups before its conversion to a house. The building is protected as a Grade II by English Heritage.

Historic Chapels Trust

The Historic Chapels Trust is a British Registered Charity set up to care for redundant non-Anglican churches, chapels, and places of worship in England. To date, its holdings encompass various nonconformist Christian denominations and Roman Catholic sites.

Primitive Methodist Chapel, Nantwich grade II listed church in the United kingdom

The Primitive Methodist Chapel is a former Primitive Methodist church on Welsh Row in Nantwich, Cheshire, England. Built in 1840, it is listed at grade II. The chapel closed in 2001, and the building has been partially converted to residential use.

Wallasey Memorial Unitarian Church Church in Merseyside, England

Wallasey Memorial Unitarian Church is a redundant church in Manor Road, Liscard, Wallasey, Wirral, Merseyside, England. It is recorded in the National Heritage List for England as a designated Grade II* listed building, and is under the care of the Historic Chapels Trust.

Grade I listed buildings in Liverpool

There are over 2500 listed buildings in Liverpool, England. A listed building is one considered to be of special architectural, historical or cultural significance, which is protected from being demolished, extended or altered, unless special permission is granted by the relevant planning authorities. Of the listed buildings in Liverpool, 27 are classified as Grade I listed and are recognised as buildings of outstanding architectural or historic interest. The following list provides information on all the Grade I listed buildings in the city.

Billingshurst Unitarian Chapel Church in West Sussex , United Kingdom

Billingshurst Unitarian Chapel is a place of worship in Billingshurst in the English county of West Sussex. The cottage-like building was erected in 1754 for General Baptists, hence its original name of the Billingshurst General Baptist Chapel, but the congregation moved towards Unitarian beliefs in the 19th century, and still maintain these. It is a member of General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches, the umbrella body for British Unitarians.

Horsham Unitarian Church Church in West Sussex , United Kingdom

Horsham Unitarian Church is a Unitarian chapel in Horsham in the English county of West Sussex. It was founded in 1719 to serve the large Baptist population of the ancient market town of Horsham—home of radical preacher Matthew Caffyn—and the surrounding area. The chapel's congregation moved towards Unitarian beliefs in the 19th century, but the simple brick building continued to serve worshippers drawn from a wide area of Sussex. It is one of several places of worship which continue to represent Horsham's centuries-old tradition of Protestant Nonconformism, and is the town's second oldest surviving religious building—only St Mary's, the parish church, predates it. English Heritage has listed the chapel at Grade II for its architectural and historical importance.

Robertsbridge United Reformed Church Church in East Sussex , United Kingdom

Robertsbridge United Reformed Church is a former United Reformed Church place of worship in Robertsbridge, a village in the district of Rother in the English county of East Sussex. Built for Congregational worshippers in 1881 following their secession from a long-established Wesleyan Methodist chapel, it was the third Nonconformist place of worship in the village, whose nearest parish church was in the neighbouring settlement of Salehurst. Like the former Strict Baptist and Methodist chapels in the village, which have both closed, it no longer serves Robertsbridge as a place of worship. Local architect Thomas Elworthy's distinctive design—a "rich" and highly decorated blend of several styles—has divided opinion amongst architectural historians. English Heritage has listed the church at Grade II for its architectural and historical importance.

Ditchling Unitarian Chapel Church in East Sussex , United Kingdom

Ditchling Unitarian Chapel is a Unitarian chapel in Ditchling, a village in the English county of East Sussex. A congregation of General Baptists began to meet in the 17th century in the village, which was a local centre for Protestant Nonconformist worship, and by the time the present simple Vernacular-style chapel was constructed in 1740 a large proportion of the population held Baptist beliefs. Along with other General Baptist chapels in Sussex, the congregation moved towards Unitarian views in the mid-18th century; this caused a schism which resulted in a new chapel being formed at nearby Wivelsfield. The character of the Ditchling chapel was wholly Unitarian by 1800, and it has continued under various names since then. People associated with the chapel include William Hale White, Henry Acton, Adrian Boult—who was married there—and G. K. Chesterton. The chapel is set back from Ditchling's main street and has an adjoining house and graveyard, all of which contribute to the character of the conservation area which covers the centre of Ditchling village. English Heritage has listed the chapel at Grade II for its architectural and historical importance.

Union Street Baptist Church, Crewe Church in Cheshire, England

Union Street Baptist Church is in Union Street, Crewe, Cheshire, England. It is recorded in the National Heritage List for England as a designated Grade II listed building. In addition to the church, the attached vestry, meeting rooms and offices, boundary wall and railing are included in the listing.

Taunton Unitarian Chapel Church in Somerset, England

Taunton Unitarian Chapel is on Mary Street, Taunton, Somerset, England. It was built in the early 18th century as a Baptist chapel, but later adopted Unitarianism. The exterior was extensively renovated in the 19th century in an Italianate style. The chapel has been designated as a Grade II* listed building.

Meadrow Unitarian Chapel Church in Surrey , United Kingdom

Meadrow Unitarian Chapel is a Unitarian chapel in the Farncombe area of Godalming, Surrey, England. It is part of the London District and South Eastern Provincial Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches, one of 16 districts within the General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches, the umbrella organisation for British Unitarians.

Godalming Congregational Church Church in Surrey , United Kingdom

The building formerly known as Godalming Congregational Church was the Congregational chapel serving the ancient town of Godalming,in the English county of Surrey, between 1868 and 1977. It superseded an earlier chapel, which became Godalming's Salvation Army hall, and served a congregation which could trace its origins to the early 18th century. The "imposing suite of buildings", on a major corner site next to the Town Bridge over the River Wey, included a schoolroom and a manse, and the chapel had a landmark spire until just before its closure in 1977. At that time the congregation transferred to the nearby Methodist chapel, which became a joint Methodist and United Reformed church with the name Godalming United Church. The former chapel then became an auction gallery before being converted into a restaurant; then in 2018 the premises were let to the Cotswold Company to be converted into a furniture and home accessories showroom. In 1991 the former chapel was listed at Grade II for its architectural and historical importance.

References

  1. 1 2 3 Historic England, "Islamic Academy (1270670)", National Heritage List for England , retrieved 12 April 2015
  2. "March, Cambridgeshire - Extract from Kelly's Directory of Cambridgeshire 1929" . Retrieved 17 March 2008.
  3. Hilton, Boyd (2006). A Mad, Bad, and Dangerous People?: England 1783–1846. Oxford University Press. p. 529. ISBN   0-19-822830-9.
  4. 1 2 Wach, Howard M. (September 1991). "A "Still, Small Voice" from the Pulpit: Religion and the Creation of Social Morality in Manchester, 1820–1850". The Journal of Modern History. 63 (3): 425–456. doi:10.1086/244351. JSTOR   2938626.
  5. 1 2 3 Micklewright, F. H. Amphlett (1943). "A Sidelight on Manchester History". Notes and Queries. Oxford University Press. 184: 214–216. doi:10.1093/nq/184.8.216.
  6. "Church Register List - Manchester City Centre". Manchester City Council . Retrieved 18 March 2008.
  7. 1 2 "Church Register List - Chorlton-on-Medlock to Claughton". Manchester City Council . Retrieved 18 March 2008.
  8. 1 2 Ruston, Alan. "Obituaries of Unitarian Ministers - 1900 - 2004 - index and synopsis". Archived from the original on 22 May 2009. Retrieved 18 March 2008.CS1 maint: unfit url (link)
  9. "John Trevor". Spartacus Educational. Retrieved 17 March 2008.
  10. Pierson, Stanley (December 1960). "John Trevor and the Labor Church Movement in England, 1891–1900". Church History. Church History, Vol. 29, No. 4. 29 (4): 463–478. doi:10.2307/3161930. JSTOR   3161930.
  11. "'Vandalism' - Muslim charge against council 'wreckers'". Manchester Evening News - Asian News. 18 January 2006. Retrieved 16 March 2008.
  12. 1 2 "Manchester City Council - Agendas, reports and minutes". 1 February 2006. Retrieved 18 March 2008. (section on "CC/06/13 Unitarian Chapel, Upper Brook Street, Manchester")
  13. 1 2 "Student digs plan for 'at risk' chapel in Manchester". BBC News. 11 October 2010. Retrieved 1 May 2011.
  14. 1 2 Hammond, Steve (3 August 2004). "Homeless". Manchester Evening News - Asian News. Retrieved 16 March 2008.
  15. Taylor, Paul R (16 February 2006). "'Vulnerable' chapel faces demolition". Manchester Evening News . Retrieved 16 March 2008.
  16. "Buildings at Risk: Former Welsh Baptist Chapel". English Heritage . Retrieved 16 March 2008.
    Heritage at Risk: Welsh+Baptist+Chapel
  17. "Ten 'most threatened' buildings in England and Wales". BBC News. 11 October 2010.
  18. "Upper Brook Street Chapel planning application".
  19. "Revival for crumbling chapel designed by Houses of Parliament architect". Place Northwest. 1 June 2016.
  20. "Hello Student: The Chapel" . Retrieved 30 May 2017.