Church Of St John The Evangelist

23 Apr 2006
Church Of St John The Evangelist, Dorchester Road, Weymouth, Weymouth And Portland, Dorset, DT4 7JZ
Photograph (Digital)
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This information is taken from the statutory List as it was in 2001 and may not be up to date.


SY6880SW DORCHESTER ROAD 873-1/16/69 (East side) 12/12/53 Church of St John The Evangelist


Anglican parish church, built as a chapel of ease to St Mary's. Opened October 1854 (Kelly), transepts added c1868. By John Bury. Coursed and square Portland stone with cream ashlar dressings, green slate roofs. PLAN: the church in Decorated style is oriented with the main altar to the N, and lies at the junction of Dorchester Road with Greenhill. It has a 6-bay nave with clerestorey and aisles, SW tower with porch, E porch, twin-gabled transepts, chancel with chapels, NW vestry. EXTERIOR: windows generally have stopped labels, and copings are saddle-backed; there are stone terminal crosses to the nave, chancel, and 2 porches. The 3-stage tower has an octagonal broach spire with lucarnes at 2 levels, corner buttresses finished to a gable in the top stage, a stair clamp at its junction with the aisle, and 2-light openings with fretted screens and plate tracery to the bell stage. Facing S is a deep porch with gable stopped to carved angels, and stone vault, on 6 full-width stone steps, over a pair of plank doors with strap hinges. The plinth runs round the whole building, developing greater depth on the W side where the ground falls away. The nave S end has a large 5-light window incorporating a rose, and under a small spherical triangle with trefoil, and a slightly set back aisle with 2-light window. The E side, to Greenhill, has four 2-light clerestorey windows to segmental pointed heads divided by flat pilasters under a roll-mould stone eaves and gutter, and large stone gargoyles at the chancel end. The aisle has three 2-light windows separated by square buttresses to 2 offsets, and at the left end the projecting porch with squat diagonal buttresses. The twin-gabled transept, with ridges below the clerestorey gutter level and central valley gutter, has a central and corner diagonal buttresses, and 3-light windows; on the E side there is a large carved gargoyle figure at the outlet from the central valley to the transept. The return transept wall to the S is plain, but with C20 ventilating ducting externally. The chancel, narrower and lower than the nave, has a deep 2-light window to the E and W, diagonal buttresses, and a large 5-light N window. The chapel

in the internal angle on the E side has ball-flower decoration to the eaves cornice, a 2-light window, central and diagonal corner buttresses, and a 2-light window to the N. On the W side the internal angle is filled with a complex of chapel and vestry, including twin gables, and a lower, flat-roofed range with octagonal projecting unit. The W side otherwise corresponds with the E in layout and detailing. INTERIOR: painted plaster walls, on carpeting throughout, except for Minton tiling in the sanctuary area. The nave has arch-braced trusses, carried on long wall posts to leaf corbels, plus deep brattished tie-beams, and a king-post. The arcades are in 2 chamfered orders with labels to foliage stops, on octagonal piers; at the transept position the pier is extended as a short length of walling each side. The aisles have 'propped' lean-to roofs, and dado panelling to sill height. The doubled transepts have transverse arch-braced roofs and a 2-bay arcade, but the outer bays are closed off on each side by a lightweight screen to approx 2.5m height. The N wall of the right transept has a large blocked archway, and to the left transept is a door in moulded arch, under a pierced stone panel with 4 trefoils, presumably in conjunction with the adjacent organ gallery. The deep chancel has a panelled multi-facet barrel ceiling. The richly carved stone reredos is flanked by dark panelling in Gothic detailing each side, with 2 canopied stalls to the right. To the left is the main organ case, in a high flat segmental arch. FITTINGS: octagonal stone pulpit, brass lectern and brass communion rail, fine carved altar front. No pews or fixed seating. Many of the windows contain stained glass, including the great S ('W') window of 1862, a memorial to Georgina Phipps, wife to John Stephenson (d.1905), the first vicar to St John's. The church, which stands on a busy traffic island, is the most prominent building on the sea-front, visible from most parts of the town, and acting as a visual focus at the N end of the Esplanade. Its lofty tower and spire are reminiscent of the work of Benjamin Ferrey, who was the Diocesan architect at the time. (Buildings of England: Newman J & Pevsner N: Dorset: London: 1972-: 451).

Listing NGR: SY6823080058


This is part of the Series: IOE01/1395 IOE Records taken by Duncan Miller; within the Collection: IOE01 Images Of England


© Mr Duncan Miller. Source: Historic England Archive

This photograph was taken for the Images of England project

People & Organisations

Photographer: Miller, Duncan

Rights Holder: Miller, Duncan


Ashlar, Slate, Victorian Anglican Church, Religious Ritual And Funerary, Church, Place Of Worship, Parish Church, Chapel Of Ease, Chapel, Commemorative Monument, Commemorative