St Bride's Church (1)
Percy Street, Liverpool L8

Picture taken on Saturday 3rd September 2005, Donated by Jonathan P. Neill
 
Designer: Samuel Rowland
 
 

Whilst the district of Canning is mostly Georgian in its provenance, there exists in Percy Street and particularly in St Bride's Church, an enclave of neo-classicism. St Bride's with its Ionic columns and temple-like appearance is said to be the finest surviving neo-classical church in Liverpool. (Had St Catherine's in Abercromby Square survived 'The University's utilitarian ambitions' there would have been stronger competition). These days it scrapes a survival on a part-time basis and although it is still possible to catch a service there you are more likely to encounter 'avant garde' music than religion, at least in the summer months. It has been a biennial venue on several occasions and 'The Kif and Fracture' are amongst the users of the gallery space sub-divided and let to a number of tenants in the arts. The notable gate piers are cast iron. Inside there are monuments to the Reverend J.H. Stewart and to Mr W.M. Foster, his wife and their servant who were lost in the 1831 wreck of 'The Rothesay Castle' near Puffin Island. The captain refused to turn back to port in foul weather and subsequently presided over the grounding of the grossly un-seaworthy boat during a trip from Liverpool to the North Wales coast. The only lifeboat was holed and without oars and the bilge pumps broken. The ship was broken by the storm, bringing 130 fatalities, although 23 survived to condemn the captain who had been drunk and perished himself when the funnel collapsed.

Sources: Pevsner Architectural Guides; Liverpool by Joseph Sharples, Wikipedia & http://www.bbc.co.uk/liverpool/

Alan Maycock 2007

 

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