St Mildred's Church, Canterbury  Church

Image Source: Graham White


All Saints Canterbury Built in 1844 as the garrison church for Canterbury's Northgate Barracks and dedicated to St. Alban. The name of the architect is unknown. Following the closure and demolition of the barracks in the early 1970s, it was purchased by the Diocese of Canterbury in 1975 for 44,000. It was rededicated to All Saints and officially opened on All Saints' Day 1976.The dedication had become available since the demolition of Canterbury's previous All Saints church in 1938. That church, in the city centre, had been built in 1827-28 but was later demolished for road widening. The Garrison Church is built in a 13th century Gothic style with a long buttressed nave with individual lancet windows and a small chancel. The corners and halfway points of the nave are topped with narrow pinnacles shaped like chimneys, although the south-east and south-west pinnacles have since disappeared. There is large bellcote at the west end, containing one bell. Two entrances in the north wall were built presumably so the officers could enter the church separately from the rank and file; either that, or it was designed for large numbers of soldiers to enter and exit quickly. Internally the church has been completely altered. The Ministry of Defence stripped out all the interior fittings and memorials; leaving the Church of England with just a shell to convert into a multi-purpose church centre. The nave has been divided by a centrally partitioned entrance narthex, with a couple of upper rooms doubling as vestries/storerooms. The main worship area is to the east of the partition, while a large hall is to the west. The former west gallery has been converted into two first floor storerooms with toilets and a kitchen below. The former chancel has been separated from the nave by a screen wall and is now a separate chapel dedicated to St. Gregory. The opening of All Saints and the construction of several hundred new houses on the garrison site meant that the previous parish church of St. Gregory the Great could now be closed. Built in 1848 to a design by George Gilbert Scott, it proved to be too small and in the wrong location for most of its congregation, who lived along the Sturry Road where a small Mission Church dedicated to St. Columba had been built in 1937.This was also closed, and is now a shop selling baby equipment, while St. Gregory's is part of the Music Faculty at Christ Church College. Several artifacts from St. Gregory's have been re-housed at All Saints, including the rood cross suspended in front of the chancel arch, the wooden board displaying the list of incumbents; and a large Della Robbia depicting the Annunciation which is now in the chancel chapel. Some 20th century stained-glass from St. Gregory's was re-installed in the north windows of the nave in 1980.The oldest artifact in the church is a memorial brass to former Mayor of Canterbury Ralph Brown from 1509.This was formerly located in the medieval church of St. Mary Northgate, which was declared redundant in 1970 and is now owned by the King's School and used as a theatre. Text by Rob Baker



Church Data


1851 Census Details


Seating Capacity: No return

Morning Attendance: 100

Afternoon Attendance: No service

Evening Attendance: No service


Architecture Details


Original Build Date/Architect: Medieval


Second Restoration:







Contact Details


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