The Twentieth Century Society

100 Buildings 100 Years

1941: St Peter’s Church, Grange Park

Type: Place of worship
Architect: Cyril Farey
Location: Vera Avenue, Grange Park, London , N21 IRJ

I’ve known this church and its wooden church hall – the original temporary church, now demolished – for the past 25 years. Built during WWII, Farey’s church caused controversy in the local press at the time, but it’s a great example of architectural salvage. It’s said that no new timber was used in the construction, all of it coming from London churches destroyed during the Blitz. Pews, font and choir stalls were also rescued and the church bell, dated 1785, came from St John’s, Drury Lane.

Architect Cyril Farey is better known for his perspectivist architectural drawings. In the 1920s he worked with Edwin Lutyens and at one time the architectural room at the Royal Academy was so full of Farey perspectives that Lutyens called it “the Farey Glen”.

St Peter’s brick-built exterior, with rectangular windows, parapets and pantiles looks Scandinavian-Classical, whilst the white-plastered interior has Romanesque influence. This church demonstrates that Farey could build as well as draw.

by Cela Selley