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Church of St Mark

A Grade II Listed Building in Salisbury, Wiltshire

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Latitude: 51.0754 / 51°4'31"N

Longitude: -1.7863 / 1°47'10"W

OS Eastings: 415065

OS Northings: 130691

OS Grid: SU150306

Mapcode National: GBR 517.K65

Mapcode Global: FRA 7648.XJW

Plus Code: 9C3W36G7+4F

Entry Name: Church of St Mark

Listing Date: 12 October 1974

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1259035

English Heritage Legacy ID: 446134

Also known as: St Mark's Church, Salisbury

ID on this website: 101259035

Location: St Mark's Church, Wyndham Park, Wiltshire, SP1

County: Wiltshire

Civil Parish: Salisbury

Built-Up Area: Salisbury

Traditional County: Wiltshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Wiltshire

Church of England Parish: Salisbury St Mark and St Andrew

Church of England Diocese: Salisbury

Tagged with: Church building

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676/14/557 ST MARK'S AVENUE

East end to one bay west of the crossing, 1892-4, by Joseph A. Reeve of London. Nave and aisles added c. 1914-15, also to Reeves plan. South porch, 1922. Annexe by C.E. Moss (Moss & Denham), 1969. The planned massive tower was never taken above the nave roof ridge.

Materials: Greenish-grey coursed stone, possibly a ragstone of the Upper Greensand as used at Mere, Wilts. The stone has a rock-faced finish. Slate roofs. 1960s annexe of buff brick.

Plan: Cruciform plan: five-bay nave with aisles, western narthex and flanking spaces (gallery stairs, north, and baptistery, south), transepts, crossing tower. Two bay chancel with south chapel, and on the north, stairs to the crypt. Big south porch. Annexe alongside the north aisle. West organ gallery c1969, over an internal porch.

Exterior: St Mark is an ambitious church in Late Free Gothic style, and a considerable achievement, being 160 feet long, and completed for about £5,000 - a small budget for a church in the 1890s. The base of a projected tower has a low cap roof. The big nave has a full clerestory of two windows per bay, lean-to aisles. Turrets and buttresses frame the big south porch with a statue of the Virgin and Child above the entrance. All the openings are four-centred, the window tracery elaborately cusped, with no two windows alike. The aisle windows have blind traceried panels at their bases. Both the east and west gables are flanked by Tudorish turrets, and the west end has double entrance doors beneath a small pent roof; springers for vaulting beneath the roof show that a west porch was projected. Single-storey projections flank the west end, containing the baptistery (south) and gallery stairs (north). Adjoining this to the north is a utilitarian brick annexe for offices, halls etc, 1969, which is not of special interest. At the east end where the ground drops away, there are three windows to a small crypt beneath the chancel.

Interior: The interior is spacious and the nave well-lit, the crossing and east end less so. Four-centred nave arcades. The floors are red-and-black tiles for the corridors, oak parquet beneath the seating. White-painted walls with dressed limestone. The vaults are of stained timber, a variation of wagon vaults of four-centred profile with ridge-ribs, and the principal transverse ribs springing from corbels. The crossing arches are very high, and the western arch has a series of statues arranged vertically on the piers. The south chapel (arranged as a Lady Chapel) has two groups of three lancet windows on the south, and a three-light east window. An arch with traceried head opens into the chancel. Interior features that were abandoned for lack of money were the crossing vault, the baptistery vault, a vault under the west gallery, and carving at the entrance to the gallery stairs.

Principal Fixtures: The chancel has all its original Neo-Perpendicular fittings of oak, designed by Reeve: big reredos with figures, altar, rails, sedilia, priest's stall, reader's desk, etc., the latter two with refined details such as kneeling and seated figures on the arms. The only newer fitting here is the striking jewel-coloured east window by M. Maybee, 1960, a semi-abstract design with three central figures. The pierced parapet wall in front of it has had its quatrefoil openings glazed in the same style, a pleasing touch. Reeve's choir stalls of 1915 appear to have been removed, perhaps when an altar and rails were arranged under the crossing, probably by Moss & Denham, c. 1970. The nave seating is small oak chairs, c. early 20th century. The pulpit is oak, Neo-Perp, and the font is octagonal with panelled bowl and stem. The aisles, transepts and clerestory are mostly clear-glazed. The Lady chapel has a fine stained glass east window of the Virgin and Child with St Catherine and St Anne, and two groups of three figures in the south wall, all designed by H.W. Lonsdale, and commissioned 1898.

History: A district chapelry of St. Mark was formed out of the northern part of St. Martin's parish, and temporary churches had been built in Gigant Street (1880) and Wyndham Park (1882), to cope with the northward expansion of Salisbury. A permanent church of St Mark at the junction of St. Mark's Avenue and London Road was envisaged by Bishop John Wordsworth from the late 1880s. J.A. Reeve¿s design won the limited competition held in 1890. The foundation stone was laid on 27 April, 1892; the first phase, consisting of the chancel, south chapel, transepts and one bay of the nave, was dedicated on 28 April, 1894. The builder was C.A. Hayes of Bristol. The church was consecrated in 1899. In 1914-15 the nave was enlarged by an additional four bays plus narthex, as originally planned. After the First World War a war memorial chapel was formed in the north transept, and in 1922 the south porch was added, a virtual copy of a Reeve's porch at Ramsbury, Wilts.

Joseph A. Reeve (1850-1915) is a little-remembered but able architect with a small London practice. He trained with E.J. Tarver, and then with William Burges. Through Tarver, Reeve knew another protégé of Burges, Horatio W. Lonsdale, who designed the east window of the Lady Chapel at St Mark in 1902. Reeve's family connections were an important source of patronage. His sister married Christopher Wordsworth, whose father was Bishop of Lincoln and whose brother John became Bishop of Salisbury in 1885, a connection which gained Reeve several significant commissions and led to his involvement at St Mark, the most important commission of his career. Reeve's brother was a cleric and close friend of Archbishop Benson of Canterbury, who laid the foundation stone at St Mark. St Mark bears some similarities to St Anne, Roath (1887), Reeve's only previous design for a new church. Reeve died suddenly in 1915 before the completion of St Mark.

Sources: Peter Barrie, 'J.A. Reeve, St Mark's Church & Salisbury', Ecclesiology Today, 32 (January 2004), 24-39.
Lambeth Palace Library, ICBS (Incorporated Church Building Society) archive, ref. 11250.
Pevsner, N and Cherry, B., Buildings of England, Wiltshire, (1975) 438.

Reasons for Designation: The church of St Mark, Salisbury, is designated at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* An ambitious 1890s church, the most important commission of J.A. Reeve's career
* Careful and original detailing in a Late Free Gothic style
* Largely complete fittings of oak designed by the architect
* Excellent glass by H.W. Lonsdale, and a successful semi-abstract east window of 1960 by M. Maybee
* Important for its associations with Bishop John Wordsworth's campaign for the extension of Anglicanism in Salisbury at the end of the 19th century

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