How our Catholic heritage is overlooked
The Roman Catholic church has a glorious history of fine architecture which has been largely overlooked, a new book claims.
A Glimpse of Heaven, by Christopher Martin, is being published by English Heritage as part of its campaign to save Britain's historic places of worship, many of which are in a serious state of disrepair.
Simon Thurley, chief executive of English Heritage, said it was time Catholic buildings were recognised. "As a group, they have been largely overlooked by architectural historians who have sometimes drawn unfair and inappropriate comparisons with Anglican places of worship," Dr Thurley said.
The research for A Glimpse of Heaven uncovered an astonishing diversity of styles from the chapels of Catholic aristocrats, to Gothic masterpieces by artists such as A W N Pugin, Classical basilicas and even Arts and Crafts and Modern churches.
Their history reflects that of the Catholic Church in Britain from the Reformation, when Catholic worship became illegal for two centuries, through to the 1791 Catholic Relief Act to Catholic emancipation in 1832.
Dr Thurley said it was partly because the majority of the 3,000 Catholic churches were Victorian that they had been ignored.
"It was only 30 years ago that Victorian architecture was deeply unfashionable and certainly 40 years ago people were knocking it down left, right and centre," he said.
Only 18 per cent of Catholic places of worship are listed compared to 90 per cent of Anglican churches. Yet, he said, pilot projects suggested many more should be on the protected list.
- 1 Michelle Rodriguez: Fast & Furious actor apologises after telling 'minorities' to stop taking on 'white' roles
- 2 Raif Badawi, the Saudi Arabian blogger sentenced to 1,000 lashes, may now face the death penalty
- 3 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 4 Robert Mugabe eats a zoo for 'obscene' 91st birthday party
- 5 The remarkable archaeological underwater discovery that could open up a new chapter in the study of European and British prehistory
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
Russia's roadmap for annexing eastern Ukraine 'leaked from Vladimir Putin's office'
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
£9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This role is based within a small family run ...
£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Design and marketing agenc...
£46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This property investment firm are lookin...
£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company specialises provid...