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19 August 2010

Learn about St Giles-in-the-Fields

St Giles-in-the-Fields is another often-missed parish church in the heart of the West End. Built in 1734, the current church replaced a number of previous structures, the earliest-recorded of which was built in 1101, as a chapel attached to the nearby monastery and leper hospital founded by Matilda of Scotland, wife of Henry I.

Whilst the parish population was around 30,000 in 1831, it has now fallen back to less that 5,000, with the church now acting as an important focal point for the surrounding commercial district, and as a quiet space to escape the busy local area.

For more on the history of the church, see http://www.stgilesonline.org/heritage-resources/history.php

1 comment:

  1. "Less than 100 years later, the new church was itself in a poor condition from damp, probably caused by the large number of Plague victim burials, the parishoners petitioned the Commissioners appointed in 1711 to build new churches in the London suburbs, for a grant to rebuild the church..... Eventually they allocated £8,000 and a new church was built in 1730-34, designed by the architect Henry Flitcroft in the palladian style".

    Now I am delighted it was rebuilt in the Palladian style and not rebuilt in the gothic style that had been there before, but why pull it down at all? Why didn't they conserve scare resources, renovate, damp proof as best they could and have a beautiful, usable building?