668/10/113 SMEDLEY STREET
CHURCH OF ALL SAINTS
Parish church of 1884 by Healey, with west end completed in 1958.
MATERIALS: Tooled gritstone in regular courses, with freestone dressings, graded-slate roof.
PLAN: Short aisled nave, chancel of equal height, with south chapel and north organ chamber and vestry.
EXTERIOR: Early-English style church of very lofty proportions. The nave is only 2 bays long, with 2-light plate-tracery clerestorey windows. Aisles have paired lancets. In the south aisle is a trefoil-headed doorway with ringed nook shafts. An additional half bay at the west end of the south aisle is part of the west front of 1958 that incorporates an entrance vestibule and gallery. The west front has a wide entrance arch above which, and set back behind a coped parapet, is a polygonal apse with simple pairs of gallery windows. The chancel has 3 lancets with a cusped circle above, forming the east window, set very high due to the fall in the ground, and towers over the priest's doorway in the south wall. The chancel clerestorey has 2 lancets and on the south side a bracketed bellcote with louvres (presumably meant to be a temporary measure in advance of a bell tower). The south chapel has a 2-light plate-tracery east window, single and paired lancets in the south wall and west rose window. The north vestry, which has a hipped roof, and organ chamber have square-headed windows, and a small quatrefoil north window to the organ chamber.
INTERIOR: Nave and chancel are of equal height and have a hammerbeam roof of 2+3 bays, on rich foliage corbels. The junction of nave and chancel is marked by triple shafts rising from the top of an arcade pier. Nave and chancel have continuous arcades of different design. The 2-bay nave arcade has a round pier, roll and hollow mouldings in the arch, and nailhead decoration to the west responds and east piers. The chancel arcade is 2 bays with octagonal piers, capitals with nailhead and square abaci, with stilted arches, the spandrels of which have open cusped circles. East responds have foliage capitals and nook shafts. The east window has a shafted rere-arch. The south chapel has a trussed-rafter roof. Walls are exposed freestone. The chancel floor has decorative tiles. Other floors are concealed beneath carpet but pews are on raised floorboards.
PRINCIPAL FIXTURES: The main interior feature of interest is the east window by Morris & Co (1905), showing saints and prophets to the design of Burne-Jones. A sequence of north aisle windows narrates the New Testament story from Resurrection to Pentecost, by Heaton Butler & Bayne (c 1907). An abstract south chapel window is by Sarah Burgess and Tony Sandles (2005). The big square font has inscription and corner shafts, and the equally imposing round freestone pulpit has cusped arches and column with detached shafts. Benches have shaped ends with pierced roundels; choir stalls have shaped ends with panelled backs and frontals. The back tiers are integral with canopied screens to the south chapel and the organ chamber, both incorporating doorways. In the sanctuary is Gothic panelling incorporating a priest's stall. The freestone reredos has cusped arches on marble shafts, framing a central high-relief crucifixion, and symbols of Evangelists under outer arches. The south chapel has a panelled Gothic wooden reredos with central carved figure of Christ under a canopy. A low brass chancel screen on a freestone base is dated 1898.
HISTORY: Parish church of 1883-84 by Thomas Henry Healey (1839-1910), in partnership with his brother Francis (1836-1910), architects of Bradford. The church was intended to capitalise on the success of John Smedley's Hydro, the hydropathic establishment that treated as many as 2000 patients a year in its C19 heyday. The original plan was to build a much larger church, beginning at the east end, but the scheme was over-ambitious and the nave was never completed. A suitable west front was built in 1958.
Pevsner, N., (revised E. Williamson), The Buildings of England: Derbyshire (1978), 274.
REASONS FOR DESIGNATION
The Church of All Saints is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* It is a large and lavish Gothic-Revival building in a prominent position on the hillside above the town.
* It includes a well-designed east window to the design of Edward Burne-Jones, and a scheme of glass by Heaton, Butler & Bayne.
* For its association with the development of Matlock as a C19 resort.