History in Structure

This site is entirely user-supported. See how you can help.

Church of St Matthew

A Grade II Listed Building in Northowram and Shelf, Calderdale

We don't have any photos of this building yet. Why don't you be the first to send us one?

Upload Photo »

Approximate Location Map
Large Map »


Latitude: 53.7387 / 53°44'19"N

Longitude: -1.8293 / 1°49'45"W

OS Eastings: 411355

OS Northings: 426942

OS Grid: SE113269

Mapcode National: GBR HTN6.RH

Mapcode Global: WHC9M.W924

Plus Code: 9C5WP5QC+F7

Entry Name: Church of St Matthew

Listing Date: 23 November 1973

Last Amended: 23 November 2010

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1133912

English Heritage Legacy ID: 338624

Location: Northowram and Shelf, Calderdale, HX3

County: Calderdale

Electoral Ward/Division: Northowram and Shelf

Built-Up Area: Bradford

Traditional County: Yorkshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): West Yorkshire

Church of England Parish: Northowram St Matthew

Church of England Diocese: Leeds

Find accommodation in



(West side)
(Formerly listed as:


DATES OF MAIN PHASES, NAME OF ARCHITECT: Parish church of 1911 by Walsh & Nicholas.

MATERIALS: Snecked local sandstone, graded stone-slate roof.

PLAN: Aisled nave with south porch, transepts, and chancel with south chapel, north vestry and link to north-east tower.

EXTERIOR: Perpendicular style. The nave has a clerestorey of 6 pairs of cusped lights under square heads, continuing over the transepts. Four-bay aisles have three 4-light square-headed windows. On the north side the narrower first bay has a doorway with continuous chamfer. On the south side the porch occupies the first bay, and has a continuous chamfer to its original south doorway, and inserted east doorway. The west front has two 3-light nave windows between angle and central buttresses, and 2-light aisle windows with cusped Y-tracery. Transepts have double gables, each with 3-light windows. On the south side the right-hand window is shorter as it has a square-headed doorway beneath it. The chancel has a 5-light east window and 3-light north and south windows. The 3-bay south chapel has south windows with Y-tracery and 3-light east window. The vestry and organ chamber have trefoil windows, east doorway, and form a passage to the tower, which is illogically placed as if it was an afterthought. The tower is 3 stages, with set-back buttresses rising to crocketed gables beneath the embattled parapet. The lower stage has pairs of mullioned windows. In the second stage are pairs of ogee-headed windows. First and second stage windows are framed by tall arched recesses. Above them is a round clock in a square frame. The taller ashlar bell stage has pairs of pointed openings with louvres.

INTERIOR: The first 2½ bays of the nave have been partitioned off by a steel and glass screen, and their furnishings have been removed. In total the nave is 6 bays, continuing across the transepts, of which the first bay is narrower. Its arcades have octagonal piers without capitals, and moulded arches. The chancel arch is similar, on polygonal responds. The nave has an arched-brace roof with polygonal boarded ceiling behind it, on a wooden cornice with fleurons. The 3-bay chancel roof is similar, with pendants. Aisle roofs have corbelled arched braces and transept roofs have collar-beam trusses. On the north side of the chancel is a high arch to the organ recess, and pointed vestry door. On the south side is a segmental-pointed niche, with heraldic shields forming the label stops. Walls are plastered. The sanctuary has a marble floor but the remainder of the chancel floor is concealed under carpets. The nave has a parquet floor, with raised dais at the east end where an altar has been set up.

PRINCIPAL FIXTURES: The font is octagonal, carved with bowl and stem as a single piece. Pews, surviving only in the eastern half of the nave and aisles, have fielded-panel backs and alternate ends have linenfold panelling. Part of a former chancel screen, made by C.H. Stevens (1938), has been placed in the chancel and has a central ogee arch with flanking narrow bays with delicate tracery. The cornice has been mostly removed. The sanctuary walls have 2 tiers of panelling, the lower with linenfold and surrounding a piscina in the south wall. The reredos is by H.P. Jackson of Northowram (1913), and has niches with figures of archangels. The south chapel retains a panelled wooden reredos but has otherwise been cleared of furniture for use as a meeting room.

HISTORY: Parish church of 1911 by the Halifax architectural firm of Joseph Walsh (1861-1950) and Graham Nicholas (1871-1915). The interior was re-ordered in the 1990s, when furnishings were removed from the west end of the nave, to be used for non-liturgical purposes.

Pevsner, N., The Buildings of England: Yorkshire, West Riding (1959), 235.

REASONS FOR DESIGNATION: The Church of St Matthew, Northowram, Halifax, is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* It is a prominent Gothic building in the centre of Northowram village, retaining its original external character and detail.
* It has a spacious interior with simple but elegant arcades and roofs, and retains most of its original fittings, the most notable of which is the locally carved reredos.

Recommended Books

Other nearby listed buildings

BritishListedBuildings.co.uk is an independent online resource and is not associated with any government department. All government data published here is used under licence. Please do not contact BritishListedBuildings.co.uk for any queries related to any individual listed building, planning permission related to listed buildings or the listing process itself.

British Listed Buildings is a Good Stuff website.