Point of Interest

Saints Church, Francis Road

England / Europe

All Saint’s Church, Frances Road, is a brick structure in the modern style, consisting of a chancel, a nave of six bays, a south aisle and a central tower, containing one bell. In 1862 Canon Henry Ellison (1813-99), Vicar of Windsor, noted that many of his poorer parishioners were unable to attend church because of the extortionate pew rents in operation at St John’s (the Parish Church), only 200 of the 1,700 being free. This church was built to accommodate more people in free seating. Queen Victoria contributed £300 towards the building costs. John Piper and John Betjeman described it as ‘polychrome Early English in the big-boned manner of Brooks and Butterfield by Sir Arthur Blomfield, 1868.’ Sir Arthur was one of England’s most eminent architects, but it was his apprentice, Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), later the well-known novelist, who visited the proposed site and made the necessary plans and drawings. Empress Frederick (then Crown Princess of Germany, eldest daughter of Queen Victoria, laid the foundation stone on 21 November 1864. In 1931 the church was given a new organ and the west gallery built. The new Parish Hall was opened by Princess Anne on 12 April 1989.

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