Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:


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Statutory Address:

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

Brentwood (District Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:
TQ 58888 89990



TQ58NE GREAT WARLEY STREET, Great Warley 723-1/10/143 (West side) 20/02/76 Church of St Mary the Virgin


Church. 1902-4. Architect C Harrison Townsend; interior decoration and fittings by W Reynolds Stephens in Art Nouveau style. Rough cast with oolitic limestone dressings, roofs peg tiled. Plan: nave and narrower chancel with apse, transeptal projections on S and N sides are chapel and organ chamber with vestry respectively. W end, small belfry tower with shingled spirelet and 3 louvred openings on each face. EXTERIOR: all windows are of lancet form unless otherwise stated. S elevation, E-W, single window, pair of windows under gable, buttress, 3 grouped windows, S chapel transept with diagonal buttressed corners and broad 2-centred arched window with heart shaped tracery. Nave - 2 pairs of windows, intervening buttress. S porch flanked by buttresses, porch projects in Essex style, timber-framed on roughcast base with central ogee arched head and cusped side opening, barge board with inscription, door boarded with ornamental hinges and dedication inscription above, rainwater down pipes have leaf decorated heads. N elevation, E-W, single window, pair of windows, N vestry transept, buttressed and gabled with central segment headed doorway with boarded door, organ chamber integral build but set back with buttressed corner and hipped roof and 2 rectangular paired windows with leaded panes. Nave, 4 pairs of windows, buttresses between, rainwater down pipes as on S. E end elevation shows N vestry to have a pair of tall narrow windows on E side with leaded panes. W elevation, nave with angle buttresses, ground floor, 7 narrow rectangular windows spanning full width, above, `rose' window with central roundel and 8 radiating tracery hearts. INTERIOR: nave roof, timber, 2-centre arched having broad vault - 5 bays have ribs decorated with embossed rose trees in aluminium leaf. S chancel window glass destroyed in 1939-45 war and partially replaced by memorial windows. Walls wood panelled below with marquetry inlay. Pendant lights have galvanised iron frames with enamel panels, flower bud metal shades and glass bead finials. Font, white marble, central bowl and pedestal, 2 attached side pillars surmounted by bronze angels, font cover in bronze with mother-of-pearl inlay. Pulpit cruciform in copper sheet, rivet heads featured and mother-of-pearl inlay panels. Central IHS in repousse, arms of cross supported by bronze triple stemmed trees, black marble podium. Lectern in copper sheet, as pulpit, with decorative rivets and mother-of-pearl inlay panels, desk top supported by flowering branches, black marble plinth. Rood screen of brass rose trees on variegated green and white marble screen walls, crest of continuous frieze of dog-roses in mother-of-pearl and enamel with supporting angels, central upper cross. Chancel, 2-centred arch, apse has lower panels of cippolino variegated marble with aluminium leaf above. Embossed paired ribs carrying stylised vine leaves and red painted grapes rise to a deep frieze of similar leaves and grapes, small lancet window opening contains the only original stained glass. Roof similar to nave with slender aluminium ribs. Reredos, central metal embossed figure of Christ with decorative flanking panels depicting the Entombment and the Nativity. Altar rail, metal with brass crowns of thorns containing triple roses on dark green marble pillars. Side chapel has a wooden parclose screen, posts terminate in linked poppy leaves with flowers above in top rail. Organ case in iron with brass repousse cladding and central ormolu angel on projecting beak of canopy which is supported by iron side screens with bulb flowers. HISTORICAL NOTE: the building was largely the gift of Evelyn Heseltine who donated »5,000. The architect and artist could be expected to reproduce faithfully the very modern Art Nouveau styling. It is described as having `an orgy of the English Arts and Crafts variety of the International Art-Nouveau' (Pevsner, 1965). Townsend worked in E London, some of his buildings being the entrance to Blackwall Tunnel, The Horniman Museum, Forest Hill and the Whitechapel Art Gallery - all known as landmarks in English Art Nouveau architecture. The Church and lych gate (qv) form a group. (The Buildings of England: Pevsner N: Essex: 1965-: 213).

Listing NGR: TQ5888889990


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

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Books and journals
Pevsner, N, The Buildings of England: Essex, (1965), 213


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

End of official listing

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Date: 27 Aug 2001
Reference: IOE01/05346/05
Rights: Copyright IoE Mr Graham Bridgeman-Clarke. Source Historic England Archive
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