Christopher Martin tells the remarkable story of Catholic church architecture in England and Wales, a subject about which very little has been written. Catholic churches have too often been dismissed as merely ‘Victorian’. With superb illustrations by the well-known architectural photographer Alex Ramsay, this book demonstrates that many Victorian Catholic churches were masterpieces, that Catholics built churches and chapels of astonishing confidence even in the 18th century, and that in the 20th century Catholic church-builders grasped the architectural opportunities offered by the modern age with enthusiasm.
The churches in this important book are fascinating not only for their architecture but for what they tell us about the politics, history and drama of their times. This book brings a too-often ignored, and sometimes threatened, part of the nation’s heritage to a wider audience.
1. Before and After the Reformation: Survivors and Successors
2. After Emancipation: New Churches for a ‘New People’
3. Pugin and his Followers:
4. The Great Catholic Revival: Consolidation and Expansion
5. Alternatives to Gothic
6. ‘Twilight Saints and Dim Emblazonings’: The Late Goths
7. Abbeys, Schools and Seminaries: The Return of the Monks
8. The Architecture of Change: Arts and Crafts and a Return to Byzantium
9. ‘Behold, I make all things new’: Liturgical and Architectural Revolution