Christ Church Aughton – the building

Christ Church is in the style of decorated gothic, designed by Liverpool architects, W & J Hay.

The foundation stone was laid by the Lord Bishop of Chester on 26 March, 1867 but it was another to be another 10 years – 4 May, 1877 -  before the building was consecrated.

cc with moon

Ten things about our building

1        We have lost the foundation stone

The foundation stone was laid by the Bishop of Chester using a specially inscribed trowel.  (The Diocese of Liverpool was only formed in 1880).

However, we cannot find this special stone. It may have been covered when the ground level around the porch was raised.

We are still looking

main porch

2        Christ Church can be seen for miles.

Our tower, some 120 feet to the very top of the main pinnacle, is visible for miles around.   You need to climb 105 steps to get to the top.

On a clear day it is the first site of land for ships approaching Liverpool.

This photo was taken 12 miles away from Standish.

photo from wigan

3        The stone comes from a local quarry.

Nearly all the stone was quarried from the now disused quarry  situated between Delph Lane and Quarry Drive.

Stone for the window lintels comes from Storeton Hill in Cheshire.

The foundations go down to the solid rock and there are no bricks used in the building.

tower shot

4        Except for the font, pulpit and reredos.

These are made from stone from Caen in Normandy.  This stone is unusually homogeneous, and therefore suitable for carving.

The reredos  is the decoration behind the communion table)

pupit

5        There are some surprising faces in the church

There are numerous faces carved in stone and wood throughout the building, inside and out.

You can see the face of the Bishop of Chester who laid the foundation stone, Rt Rev William Jacobson, above the pulpit.  While on the facing side of the chancel appears the head of Queen Victoria.

The head of the Rector of Aughton, Rev W H Boulton, is on the outside of the building, near the top of the tower.  Exposed to the elements, he is now corroded

face

6        Everton Football Club logo appears in stained glass

There are six stained glass windows in Christ Church with the main one, at the east end celebrating the glory of Christ – the events of the final week of his life are shown along with his resurrection and exaltation.

The window at the west end of the church, above the balcony shows the four evangelists – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

The most recent window has the theme of Jesus welcoming the children. This was donated by Ken Park in 2005 in memory of his wife, Isabel and designed by Gerald Rickards, of Orrell, Wigan.

In this window designed for children the logo for Everton Football Club has been carefully hidden in margins.

Park window

7        One of our pinnacles is missing

There should be eight pinnacles at the top of the tower, but in 1928 the central one situated over the church building was blown down in a gale.  This caused much damage to the church room.

A metal brace was subsequently fitted to secure the remaining seven pinnacles.

Missing pinnaacle

8        There are eight bells, weighing a total of 3.6 tons.

Originally Christ Church only had the one bell but a full peal was installed in 1878 by John Warner, of Cripplegate in London.  Several of the bells are inscribed with the names of their donors.

The first peal was sounded on Thursday, 19 September that year.

When the bells are being rung, the tower gently sways.

9        Our organ came by canal – to Halsall.

Christ Church used a temporary organ until 1893.  At this time St Cuthbert’s, Halsall ordered an organ from Abbott and Smith and this was transported by canal from Leeds to Halsall.

However, for some reason this organ was never installed at St Cuthbert’s and instead was fitted at Christ Church.

organ pipes

10      No pews ends are the same

Christ Church was built and decorated by craftsman, witness the innumerable carvings and decorations.

One feature is the pattern at the end of each pew, some, are never the same.

Pewends

The view inside our church

Towards the altar HDR2 DAVED

From the altar_HDR2 DAVED