History Update

Option 1:  History Update

 

St Paul's Church is an imposing stone building with many fine examples of stained glass; a setting of significance for baptisms, weddings and funerals. The church was built in 1876, with seating for 400 people, and is a Grade II listed building. It was extended in 1896 and an octagonal tower added in 1900.

The adjacent Parish Hall is a big space for big occasions and is also used by a wide variety of community groups for activities, hoe-downs and celebrations.(see 'Church Hall Bookings')

Background

In 1840 the railway came to Stockport and with it a huge explosion in the local population. St.Thomas’s Church was opened in 1765 and was the only church to serve the area. In 1874 it was decided to build a new church and at a public meeting it was agreed that it should be called St. Paul and should be built of stone so that it should last a substantial time with little repair. The building was to accommodate 400 people. A Building Committee was set up and Lord Egerton of Tatton donated land and £3000 cash. In return he and his descendants were to become trustees of the patronage. Further monies were raised by public subscription and in January 1875 building work commenced. W Romaine Callender, MP for Manchester, laid the foundation stone in April of that year with full Masonic honours.

Architecture of the Church

The original architects of the church were the Manchester firm of Bird and Whittenburg.

It was designed in a very free and English style which at the time was considered to be quite innovative, for it moved away from the traditional Gothic style so popular at that time.

The first building consisted of the chancel and nave extending to four bays (arches), widely spaced on round stone pillars, which support a cradle vault and the high roofs. Each bay aisle has a pair of trefoil lancets and a group of three plain lancets in the clerestory (upper level). Decorative stonework is limited to strong moulding on the nave arcades and the bases and capitals of the pillars.

The original building was designed so that it could easily be extended as the population increased and in 1896 a further two bays were added. The present nave is now 40 metres long and has a width, with aisles, of 15 metres. Seating accommodation was provided for 600 people.

In 1900 the tower was added at a cost of £1980. Frank Oakley was the architect and the drawing for the design was exhibited at the Royal Academy of Art – a rare distinction.

It stands approx. 25 metres high, is square in shape and is capped with an octagonal top stage. The penultimate floor features louvre windows inset with slate tiles. On the top is a wrought iron weather vane and at the third level is a single bell which is presently rung before Sunday morning Eucharist and on other special occasions. The tower is a prominent feature of the local landscape.

To celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the church in 1926, the final piece of the jigsaw was added by the building of the Choir Vestry. The cost is not recorded but it was met from public subscriptions and profits from various church activities.

Seating and Furnishings

The church seating accommodation is provided by pine pews, some of which are divided into smaller units to provide family pews for rental. However, the practice of renting pews has long been discontinued. Originally, there was seating for 600 people but in 1971 the pews along the north wall were removed to provide an area to accommodate the Book of Remembrance and to make it possible for those attending a Holy Baptism service only, to face the font which is at the back of the Church. Chairs are presently placed in this area but the space can also be used for exhibitions. Cupboards were also provided to accommodate alter frontals and vases. A children's area was later defined along this north wall.

Following these alterations, it is estimated that the church can now seat around 380 people. It is the largest church in the area.

Over recent years, ladies of the Church, led by Beryl Divine and Marjorie Foster, have created a series of embroidered banners which now hang on the stone pillars.  In addition, many individually patterned cushion kneelers have been produced. The work initially began as a result of Gwen Taylor’s idea to provide an altar rail kneeler in memory of Canon Edwin Taylor, and this was worked jointly by Gwen Taylor and Jean Anderson. This led to members of the congregation providing over 90 kneelers which were worked and dedicated to family members and loved ones. The kneelers, coupled with the later addition of the banners, combined to make a warmer, more welcoming atmosphere. The splendid results are of great credit to the team of ladies who have contributed with their time and skills.

 

Chancel

The chancel is 9 metres long and 7 metres wide and a five-light decorated window fills the east end in the Sanctuary.

On the north side of the chancel is the organ chamber and clergy vestry.

The rector’s stall, curate’s stall and choir stalls are built of pine with scroll carving

A pulpit, half octagonal in shape, is built of stone and stands at the entrance to the chancel on the north side.

On the south side of the entrance, a carved eagle, which supports the Bible, surmounts the brass lectern which has a circular base and pedestal. It is inscribed as 'The gift of William Messenger, for the services of God in St. Paul's Church, Heaton Moor. February 25th 1877'. The present Bible (New Revised Standard Version) was presented in Nov 2011 by Jane and Roger in memory of their parents, Frank and Rosabelle Nicholson.

 

Organ (north side)

The present organ was dedicated in 1955 following a rebuild by J W Walker & Sons Ltd. This is the third organ at St. Paul’s. The original organ, built in 1877, was found to be insufficient by 1902 and was completely rebuilt by Benson of Manchester. After a further fifty years of service, wear and tear had taken its toll and another rebuild was the only solution. A lot of the old piping was utilised but the opportunity was taken to incorporate modern technology to provide an organ of considerable quality which is now rated as the best organ in South Manchester. The cost of £4,884 was raised from public appeal. Organ Recitals are held at the Church, organised by the Manchester Society of Organists.

On the wall of the north aisle there is a framed order of service for the 1955 dedication which also gives details of the organ pipe work.

 

Sanctuary

On the east wall behind the altar and extending the full width of the wall is an alabaster and marble reredos. This was erected in 1911 with the help of a legacy from Mrs Hannah Foulkes. The carved medallions to the left and right of the cross represent the Pascal Lamb and the Pelican in Piety. At the same time a piscine was erected using the same materials.

A tribute should be made at this point to the floral displays that are always evident around the chancel and in particular on the altar. Our team of flower arrangers, led by Ann Sawer, provide a valuable service to the church and their results are much admired throughout the year.

 

On the inset shelf to the left of the altar, the silver collection plate is engraved as:

IN MEMORY OF OUR BELOVED FRIENDS

EILEEN JENKS

1949 – 1997

ERIC JENKS

1950 – 1999

JEAN ANDERSON

1948 – 1999

THEIR SERVICE TO ST. PAUL’S CHURCH AND

THEIR LOVE FOR THEIR NEIGHBOURS

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - 

In 1950, following the deaths of Mary Kenyon Ball (1949) and Frank Tacon (1950), a memorial fund was established to provide new floor tiles in the sanctuary, to improve the sanctuary lighting and to install new altar rails. A memorial tile to Mary Ball was placed in the Sanctuary (RHS) and a marble tablet to Frank Tacon is just in front of the altar rails in the Chancel.(also on RHS)

 

Nave of the Church

Font

The font, built from stone, is octagonal in shape and stands on a pedestal, based on an octagonal shaped floor at the back of the church. It is inscribed ‘Presented by the children of Heaton Moor 1876’. A carved wooden cover, octagonal at the base and rising to a point, is on top and this is raised by a wire and pulley system suspended from the ceiling. The word ‘Sanctus’ is on each of the eight sides and is inscribed in the memory of H Hobson and his wife Lucy who died in 1911 and 1909 respectively.

 

Remembrance Corner

Although referred to as a ‘Corner’, it is situated in the middle of the north aisle. A glass topped cabinet in a simple modern style contains the Book of Remembrance.

 

 

Children’s Area

The area next to the Remembrance Corner is a quiet play area for young children, with soft furnishings, toys and books. At present, we do not have a separate children’s crèche but you and your children are extremely welcome at all services.

 

 

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Stained Glass Windows

The stained glass windows of the church are all considered to be great examples of the art and are undoubtedly its finest treasures. They are all protected on the exterior by galvanised metal screens.

(A reminder that each photo can be expanded by clicking on the picture, and then clicking a second time on the expanded picture. This enables the fine detail of each window to be fully appreciated)

 

Sanctuary

East Window

The five-light decorated window at the east end of the church and above the altar was a memorial gift from the congregation to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1897 and depicts the crucifixion of Christ and the conversion of St. Paul in a series of ten panels.

The septfoil(upper) light represents the Father in Glory. The two cinquefoil lights The Angelic Choir. The upper half of the five lights represents successively: The Agony in Gethsemane, Jesus Carrying His Cross, The Crucifixion, The Deposition and The Women at the Tomb. The lower left of the five lower lights represents The Stoning of Stephen, the second, third and fourth represent The Conversion of St. Paul and the fifth represents St. Paul before Felix.

The small lights on the right are enlarged extracts from the main window.

Dedication: 'ERECTED BY THE PARISHIONERS TO THE GLORY OF GOD ANNO DOMINI 1897'

 

North Windows in Sanctuary

St. Paul and St. James

plus

South Windows in Sanctuary

St. Jude and St. Peter

These 2 double windows were added following the death of John Roberts in 1907

Dedication: (across both pairs of windows)

TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN LOVING . . MEMORY OF JOHN ROBERTS BORN

MARCH 24TH 1837, DIED OCT 9TH   . . . . . .1907, ERECTED BY HIS WIFE

 

South Aisle

Six of the windows are stained glass, the remaining five windows being the originals fitted with leaded panes which contain clear and coloured glass.

Details of the Stained Glass Windows, starting nearest to the front entrance:

1st and 2nd windows  –  Jesus Christ and St. John

each dedicated as:

‘In loving memory of Anna Leslie McNiel, died Jan 19th 1881

Inserted by her son Henry McNiel’

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3rd and 4th windows  Representations of Boaz and Ruth

Script and Dedication to be read across the two windows:

THE LORD RECOMPENSE THY WORK. . . . . .  A FULL REWARD BE GIVEN THEE

‘IN LOVING MEMORY OF . . . . . HANNAH, WIFE OF WILLIAM OWEN

OF HEATON CHAPEL WHO . . . DIED FEBRUARY 21st 1888’

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5th  and 6th windows – Jesus Christ appearing to Mary Magdalen after the Resurrection + The Women at the Tomb

Touch Me not for I have not yet ascended to my Maker (on 5th window)

Dedication on each window reads:

‘To the Glory of God in loving memory of Mary Barlow, born Jan 8th 1833

died Good Friday April 17th 1908. Erected by her daughter’

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Windows 7 – 11 are the originals (leaded panes with plain and coloured glass)

 

West End

Figure of St. Paul (near rear exit)

Dedication:

‘In memory of Arthur Hilton, Warden of this church from 1893 to 1895 and from 1901 to 1905. Born 1853 Died Oct 21st 1905’

The picture of Paul's conversion on the right is an enlarged extract taken from the East window

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West Window

The two tall central double-light windows above the notice boards were designed by A L Moore in 1901 and given to the church in memory of Alfred Baynton, a former churchwarden, by his widow. Beneath the window is a brass memorial tablet to his memory.

The upperhalf of the first window, above the text 'They were all filled with the Holy Ghost' represents the Pentecost; the upper half of the second window, above the text 'We praise thee, O God; we acknowledge thee to be the Lord', represents the Te Deum; the lower half of both windows, above the texts 'Looked on him and passed by on the other side' and 'the Samaritan when he saw him had compassion on him' contain scenes from the Good Samaritan.

Dedication:

‘To the Glory of God and in loving memory of

ALFRED BAYNTON

for four years warden of this Church

who died Dec 3rd 1900 aged 55 years

these windows are erected by his wife and children.

BLESSED ARE THE DEAD WHICH DIE IN THE LORD’

It is of interest that the window contains portraits of his two daughters, one of whom married the Rev. Canon Jeff, Rector of the Parish from 1924 – 1962

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Figure of Jesus Christ (near the font) Blessing the Children

SUFFER THE LITTLE CHILDREN TO COME UNTO ME

 

Dedication:

‘TO THE GLORY OF GOD THIS WINDOW IS ERECTED TO THE MEMORY OF RICHARD SHEPHERD, FIRST RECTOR OF THE PARISH FROM 1876 – 1889 BY WILLIAM MESSENGER’

 

North Aisle (starting near the font)

Nine of these windows are of stained glass – the remaining two windows being the originals fitted with leaded panes containing clear and coloured glass.

Details of the 9 stained glass windows are as follows:

1st and 2nd windows  -  Solomon and David

Dedication to be read across the two windows:

 

To the Glory of God and to commemorate the consecration of Prince Edward Lodge 2109, 23rd January 1886

 

There is no Church connection to this Lodge at the present time.

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3rd and 4th windows are the originals.

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5th and 6th windows  –  Figures of Jesus Christ 

Script and Dedication to be read across the two windows:

The Good Shepherd . . . . . I am the Light of the World.

‘TO THE GLORY OF GOD, THIS WINDOW IS . . . . . ERECTED BY WILLIAM MESSENGER

IN LOVING MEMORY OF HIS WIFE MARY . . . BORN JUNE 28th 1821 DIED FEBRUARY 18th 1897’

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7th and 8th windows  –  Figures of Jesus Christ: His Charge to St. Peter and appearing to Mary Magdalen after the Resurrection.

Script and Dedication to be read across the two windows:

He saith unto him ‘Feed thy Lambs’ . . . . . . .Jesus saith unto her ‘Touch me not’

‘TO THE GLORY OF GOD, THIS WINDOW IS ERECTED BY WILLIAM AND MARY MESSENGER IN LOVING

MEMORY OF THEIR NIECE ESTHER ANN COTTRILL BORN AUGUST 28TH 1850, DIED APRIL 11th 1892’

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9th and 10th windows  -  Figures of St. Paul:  Preaching on the Areopagus.

Script and Dedication to be read across the two windows:

‘Ye men of Athens, I perceive that . . . . . . in all things you are too superstitious’

 'TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN LOVING. . . . .MEMORY OF JOHN FOULKES, BORN MARCH

14th 1827 DIED MARCH 6th 1892 ERECTED . . .BY HIS AFFECTIONATE WIFE AND CHILDREN

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11th window  -  St. LUKE the PHYSICIAN

Dedication:

‘TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN LOVING MEMORY OF FREDERICK WILLIAM JORDAN AND HIS WIFE FRANCES’

Undated but in memory of F W Jordan (Peoples Warden 1890) and his wife Frances. (the picture on the right is an enlarged extract from the West window)

 

Memorial Tablets and Plates

South wall of Chancel

Alabaster and marble tablet in memory of W H Smartt, died 1933. (expand to read dedication)  Rector of St. Paul’s from 1889 – 1924.

 Glass Screen to the front of the Wardens' Pew.(near front entrance)

Glass panels in memory of two former Wardens, E L Estill and J I Hughes   and his wife Patti Hughes.

 

Dedications on Wardens' Screen:

EDWARD LAMB ESTILL

SIDESMAN 1906 - 12

RECTOR’S WARDEN 1912 – 31.

WITH GOOD WILL DOING SERVICE

 

JOHN IDRIS HUGHES

PEOPLE’S WARDEN FROM 1939 TO 1969

RECTOR’S WARDEN FROM 1970 TO 1980

PATTIE HUGHES, WIFE OF JOHN I HUGHES

DIED MAY 1997

A QUIET SERVANT TO GOD AND HER FAMILY

 

The scroll mounted on the wall above the Wardens' pew is in appreciation of all those who contributed to the major repair works to the church tower and other church fabric carried out in 2014.

The names can easily be read by clicking on the picture twice.

 

West Wall

Brass War Memorial in memory of the men of the Parish killed in the Great War 1914 –18, containing 39 names.

FOR YOUR TOMORROW, WE GAVE OUR TODAY

Dedication:

1914 – 1919

ERECTED

BY THE

PARISHIONERS OF THIS CHURCH

TO THE GLORY OF GOD

AND IN GRATEFUL MEMORY

OF THEIR GALLANT SONS

WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES IN

THE GREAT WAR

WHOSE NAMES ARE

ENROLLED HEREON

 

  Sunday 11th November 2012

 

The following link

www.johncassidy.org.uk/heatonmoor

celebrates the life and work of the locally based sculptor of our roadside memorial, John Cassidy (1860 - 1939).
Being well known nationally, Heaton Moor was very privileged that he agreed to the commission.

The completed memorial was unveiled on 30 January 1921 in a ceremony attended by Charles Royle, Mayor of Stockport. Cassidy was congratulated for producing a statue which 'suggested great ideals:
it suggested something of the infinite…. heroic endurance and sustained fortitude'.

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North Aisle

 

 

Brass memorial tablet in memory of Hannah Foulkes, a benefactor of the Church, who died in 1910.

 

 

 

 

 

Other Dedicated Fixtures

Notice boards on West Wall at the back of church were given in memory of J B Wayne.

Psalm and Hymn Boards are in memory of Joseph D Duckworth. (see Dedication)

The Book Trolleys at the front and rear of the Church are in memory of Frank Tacon, member of the P.C.C. and Sidesman (1987)

The Altar Book Stand, designed and crafted by Alan Jones of Princes Rd, is in memory of Glyn and Margaret Davies (2012)

Sound system – restored in 1987 in memory of Rev.V and Mrs V Lester and renewed in 2005 by a legacy from Edna W Rodwell.

Oak Paschal Candle is the gift of Dorothy Wayne, Easter 2002.

The candle is placed and used at the front of the chancel during Baptism services and for other special occasions. e.g. Bereavement Service, as pictured.

 

 

 

Grounds

There are no graves within the churchyard but four plots have been consecrated for the burial of ashes. A rectangle of stones, part of the landscaping of these plots, commemorates the consecration and the centre stone bears the inscription May 1965. The plan of the ground is displayed with the ‘Book of Remembrance’ in church. George Ball and Son, the local undertakers, manage the site. Memorial tablets cannot be included due to lack of space.

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ADDITIONAL PICTURE GALLERY

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