St Francis Vicarage


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Amersham Road, High Wycombe, HP13 5AB


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Statutory Address:
Amersham Road, High Wycombe, HP13 5AB

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

Buckinghamshire (Unitary Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:


A vicarage, designed by Giles Gilbert Scott around 1929-1930 to accompany the neighbouring Anglican church of St Francis, High Wycombe.

Reasons for Designation

The Vicarage, The Church of St Francis, High Wycombe, designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott and built 1929-1930 is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:

* a building by the noted architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, which retains a high degree of its original designed form and shows Scott's mastery of massing and effective detailing.

Historic interest:

* one of the relatively few domestic designs by Giles Gilbert Scott, which fully shows his ability to create an impressive composition with limited means and to blend styles on one site.

Group value:

* with the Church of St Francis (Grade II*), also designed by Giles Gilbert Scott.


The vicarage and the church of St Francis, High Wycombe were both built to the designs of Sir Giles Gilbert Scott and appear to have been the result of a single commission.

The church replaced a small wooden building erected in 1912. A more substantial church was proposed by the Rev. Frederick Francis Field in 1916 but no progress was made due to the First World War. The present church was built in 1929-30 and a new parish of Terriers was created in 1937.

It was Field's widow who selected Sir Giles Gilbert Scott as architect. His fame was well-established by this time. At the age of twenty-two he had won the competition to design Liverpool Anglican cathedral and he was knighted in 1924 following its consecration. Although principally a designer and restorer of churches, he had already designed his own home, Chester House, Clarendon Place in 1925-1926 (Grade II) which established the pattern for his later domestic designs such as 22, Weymouth Street, London (Grade II) and the present building.

The vicarage can be seen in aerial views dated 1937. It continued to serve as the church house and was latterly used as a curate’s dwelling until 2019.


A vicarage, designed by Giles Gilbert Scott around 1929-1930 to accompany the neighbouring Anglican church of St Francis, High Wycombe.

MATERIALS: buff brick laid in stretcher bond with ashlar dressings and a pantile roof.

PLAN: the plan is linear and extends from south-west to north-east. Reception rooms are placed on the south-east side of the ground floor, with the study having a bow window at the south-west end, as does the sitting room next to it. The kitchen is placed at the north-eastern end with a small external yard. The staircase and corridors run along the north-western side with the bathrooms, lavatories and storage.

EXTERIOR: the building has a flush ashlar band at first-floor sill level. Door and window openings have bricks with a quadrant moulding to their inner edges and soldier courses to the sills and lintels. Metal-framed casement windows have been replaced with uPVC substitutes.

The north-eastern entrance front has a projecting portion to the central five bays with a recessed arched porch and front door to the middle. Walling to either side is recessed and the eaves have a pronounced overhang. Ridge chimney stacks to right and left help to promote the sense of symmetry.

The south-western end is bowed and has three windows to each floor, symmetrically disposed, each with two casement lights.

The south-eastern front facing the garden has a similar arrangement to the entrance front with a projecting central portion of five bays. The five, two-light casements at first-floor level are evenly disposed. At ground-floor level the sitting room has a single-storey bow at left with a pitched, semi-circular roof of pantiles and the two dining room windows to its right have low sills. At right again and recessed is the kitchen with a three-light window and further to the right is a single bay with lean-to roof which marks the service end of the house and leads to the small enclosed yard which is set at a lower level than the surrounding garden. Solar panels have been fixed above the roof at the centre of this front.

INTERIOR: the house retains fittings such as original panelled doors and door furniture, designed by Scott. Fire surrounds which correspond to those shown in Scott’s architectural drawings survive in the dining room and sitting room, the former having its original tiled surround. The staircase retains the splat balusters shown in the internal elevation drawing. First-floor fire surrounds in the bedrooms have been removed and fixtures and plumbing to the kitchen, bathroom and lavatory have been renewed, but the plan has been little altered.


Books and journals
Pevsner, N, Williamson, E, Buildings of England: Buckinghamshire, (1994), 386
'22 Weymouth Street' in Architect and Building News, (30 November 1934), x
Architectural Drawings by Giles Gilbert Scott in the RIBA Drawings Collection at the V&A museum, London showing external and internal details


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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