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Listed Building record MDR9750 - St Mary's Roman Catholic Church, Bridge Gate/Arthur St, Derby

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

St Mary's Roman Catholic chapel, shown on late 19th and early 20th century Ordnance Survey maps. (1-3) St Mary's is the principal Roman Catholic church of Derby. Completed in 1839, the work of the elder Pugin. Adjoining the church is a large convent [see SMR 32439]. (4) St Mary's, Derby, was the first parish church to be constructed by A W N Pugin. Construction took two years and it was opened in October 1829. Upon its completion, Pugin wrote a description of it in which he called it '..the first Catholic structure erected in this country in strict accordance with the rules of ancient ecclesiastical architecture since the days of the pretended reformation', although in fact he had built it without the usual complement of aisles and facing the wrong direction. Nevertheless, St Mary's was generally well received. From outside the building is not particularly impressive; however, this is compensated for by the interior, although not decorated as Pugin originally intended. (5) The Roman Catholic Church of St Mary is grade II* listed and built in a 15th century Gothic style from ashlar. It has a nave with an apse and aisles. The ritual west tower is in fact to the south with a tall, slender spire. (6) The Church of St Mary was built in 1838-44. It was designed by the gifted architect Augustus Pugin and was his first major church. It was finished by his son, E W Pugin and financed by John Talbot, 16th Earl of Shrewsbury. It has a tall, slim Neo-Gothic Perpendicular tower and a lofty, simply adorned nave. The non-canonical north-south orientation is dictated by the confines of the site. (7)

Sources/Archives (7)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1882. OS County Series, 1st edition, scale 1:2500 (c. 25" to one mile).
  • <2> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1896-1900. OS County Series, 2nd edition (1st revision), scale 1:2500 (c. 25" to one mile).
  • <3> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1912-1921. OS County Series, 3rd edition (Second Revision), scale 1:2500 (25" to one mile).
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: Webbe, E W. 1892. Oddfellows' Companion and Guide to Derby. pp 148-149.
  • <5> Article in serial: Knight, J. 1996. 'A W N Pugin: A Gothic architect in the East Midlands', East Midlands Historian. Vol. 6, pp 12-18.
  • <6> Listed Building File: Historic England. 2011. The National Heritage List for England. List entry number 1215808.
  • <7> Bibliographic reference: Derby Civic Society. 2004. Derby Heritage Buildings.



Grid reference Centred SK 35113 36789 (30m by 56m)

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Record last edited

Feb 2 2024 4:32PM

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