|St Benet and All Saints Church Garden||Camden|
A mission church of 1881 predated the church of St Benet and All Saints here, built on a small field by a pond donated by St John's College Cambridge. A larger church was soon needed, which was consecrated in October 1885. It had taken only 4 months to be built, a contributing factor to later structural problems, and had no chancel. The chancel with vestries and south chapel was built in 1908 and, having become a dangerous structure, the original nave pulled down in 1927 and the current church built. St Benet and All Saints Church has a small raised area of garden fronting Ospringe Road with a notice board stating this is church land open for the public.
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/05/2009
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St Benet and All Saints Church Garden, August 2002. Photo: S Williams
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The church of St Benet and All Saints here was predated by a mission church that opened on 17 July 1881.The mission church had been built on a small field by a pond near Brecknock Road, the land having been donated by St John's College Cambridge. The site is now that of the church hall. The need for a new, larger church soon arose as the congregation grew and the first church on this site was consecrated in October 1885 and dedicated to St Benet, derived from St Benet's Church, Paul's Wharf in the City, now St Benet Welsh Church (q.v.). Bene't was a corruption of St Benedict, founder of the order of Benedictine monks in the early C6th. The church had taken only 4 months to be built, a fact that contributed to structural problems experienced later. By 1901 there was concern about the weight of the nave and insufficient foundations, and there was also no permanent chancel. As a result, in 1906 the decision was taken to build a chancel, and Bodley and Hare were appointed architects, who designed the present chancel with vestries and south chapel in 1908. Further problems were caused by a spring beneath the church, and in 1925 it was decided that the nave should be pulled down. Cecil G Hare was appointed as architect for the new church, which was built in 1928, although in November 1927 the old nave was condemned and closed by the LCC as a dangerous structure, and the mission church used as a temporary church in the intervening year.
St Benet and All Saints Church has a small raised area of garden fronting Ospringe Road with a notice board stating this is church land open for the public. It consists of a paved area with seats surrounded by flowerbeds, with some shrubs and an area of grass. Along Lupton Street is a further area of garden behind fencing and not open to the public, which has a sunken area with brick paving, the sides formed of railway sleepers that also provide seats, some flowers, shrubs and grass.
Bridget Cherry & Nikolaus Pevsner, The Buildings of England: London 4: North (Penguin, 1998); Camden Listed Buildings website; history on church website www.saintbenets.org.uk.