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Church of St Mary Magdalene and Attached Railings

A Grade II* Listed Building in Islington, London

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Latitude: 51.5484 / 51°32'54"N

Longitude: -0.1079 / 0°6'28"W

OS Eastings: 531288

OS Northings: 184971

OS Grid: TQ312849

Mapcode National: GBR GK.1H0

Mapcode Global: VHGQT.2BSV

Entry Name: Church of St Mary Magdalene and Attached Railings

Listing Date: 20 September 1954

Grade: II*

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1195637

English Heritage Legacy ID: 369018

Location: Islington, London, N7

County: London

District: Islington

Electoral Ward/Division: St Mary's

Built-Up Area: Islington

Traditional County: Middlesex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater London

Church of England Parish: St Mary Magdelene and St David Holloway

Church of England Diocese: London

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Listing Text


635-1/45/507 HOLLOWAY ROAD
20-SEP-54 (West side)


Anglican church in Neo-classical style, originally the Holloway Episcopal Church and a Chapel of Ease to the medieval church of St Mary Islington. Built 1812-14, the name of the architect William Wickings recorded on a tablet under the E window; builder Joseph Griffiths. Became a parish church in 1894, internal alterations 1895 by CE Child. Yellow brick in Flemish bond with dressings of Portland stone, roof obscured by very deep parapet. Plan of chancel, nave, N,S and W porches; tower over the chancel. Gauged brick voussoirs to arches and openings; upper windows are round-headed, lower are segmental arched, basement openings also segmental-arched and barred. E end is of 3 bays, each articulated by a shallow full-height round-headed arch enclosing lower and upper windows, the middle bay set slightly forward. Rusticated stone plinth incorporating windows to basement; stone band dividing the two upper storeys and similar impost band not carried into the round-arched recess which frames the window; stone entablature. Lamps fixed to corners. The tower over the central bay is square in plan; its first stage is of ashlar and incorporates clock faces - clock by Handley and Moore of Clerkenwell presumably 1814; second stage is of brick with round-arched recessed louvred belfry openings flanked by bracketed Ionic pilasters of stone; moulded stone impost band, again not carried into the arched recess; modillion cornice, parapet with urns over the pilasters, the urns originally of Coade stone but replaced in real stone in 1910. First bay of N and S returns continues this arrangement but at ground floor level are curved steps up to a stone portico with paired Tuscan columns distyle in antis supporting an entablature and blocking course, later enclosed with wood panels with pedimented doorway; scrolled wrought-iron lamp bracket over entrance; iron railings to steps at sides and centre. 6-bay nave with stone bands separating storeys and at parapet level; part lead rainwater heads with downpipes at either end; at centre railed steps down to crypt with segmental-arched doorway. W end is similar to E but with central porch similar to those at N and S with railed steps, though straight; doorway with double 8-panelled doors, a rear entrance; centre and ground floor windows blind/blocked; similar storey bands; parapet is surmounted by a gable enclosing a semi-circular lunette within a round-arched recess. N side as S.

Inside, N and S porches lead to hallways with vestry off and cantilevered open-well stone staircase to gallery with iron stick balusters and lamp bracket and wreathed wooden handrail; fanlight over former main doorway; panelled dado, mutule cornice. Ringing chamber with peal boards and wooden ladder to belfry. At ground level doors lead to interior at NE and SE. Central shallow segmental arched reredos recess at E end containing two pairs of Ionic marble or marbled pilasters, each outer pilaster sunk in the reveal of the recess; the pilasters support an entablature with modillion cornice broken by a gilded dove within a sunburst; the arch to the recess relating to the entablature as a segmental pediment, the soffit decorated with paterae in squares; black panels with gilded texts - the Lord's Prayer, Ten Commandments and Creed. Very shallow sanctuary bordered by later altar rails of brass supported on panels of arabesque ironwork and paved with decorative encaustic tiles; Regency table altar. Gallery to N, W and S sides is raked and carried on Tuscan columns with a plain white painted front. Altered from horseshoe-shape to rectangle by Child in 1895. At W is the organ by George Pike England of 1814 with adaptations by Henry Willis in 1867 and N P Mander in 1947 - Father Willis the organist here for c 30 years. England's mahogany case is of the 4-tower type, each with 3 pipes; central flat has 5 pipes and outer pair is double-storeyed; the towers have carved pipeshades and above the console is a gilded sunburst. Royal Coat of Arms to gallery front. Original dado panelling throughout the church. 6-panelled double doors with panelled reveals. Ceiling is lightly moulded: a modillion cornice, coving and a flat ceiling bounded by a band of guilloche work, with one large and two small roundels surrounding central roses of foliage ornament. A C19 water-colour shows an elaborate painted decorative scheme to the ceiling, no longer extant; the present painted decorative scheme is a recovery of the original Regency character. Mahogany pulpit converted from original 3-decker and now at W is square in plan with concave chamfers at corners and resting on an arcaded base, the curved stair having a balustrade of later ironwork. Marble and alabaster font in N aisle of fine neo-Renaissance work dated1899, a square bowl decorated with oval panels carved in shallow relief supported by a central column and four corner Corinthian antae. Some Victorian stained glass with small scale decorative pattern at W and N window by Heaton, Butler and Bayne post 1856. Some wall monuments including The London Troops Memorial and a mosaic Art Nouveau style War Memorial. Beneath the church is a crypt of four parallel white-painted brick tunnel vaults mostly converted to classrooms. Set in a large churchyard with many chest tombs.

Listing NGR: TQ3128884971

This List entry has been amended to add the source for War Memorials Register. This source was not used in the compilation of this List entry but is added here as a guide for further reading, 30 October 2017.

This text is from the original listing, and may not necessarily reflect the current setting of the building.

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