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Thread: St Raphael Church, Millbrook, Lancs, December 2019

  1. #1
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    Default St Raphael Church, Millbrook, Lancs, December 2019


    1. The History
    St Raphael the Archangel opened in 1963 after Millbrook was made its own parish five years previously in 1958. The area was originally part of the parish of St Peter’s, Stalybridge. However, following a number of well-attended masses in the canteen of Staley Mill (see earlier report), Millbrook, from 1946 onwards, Bishop John Murphy of Shrewsbury decided to constitute Millbrook as a parish in its own right. The church was designed by Edward Massey and Alan Burton of Massey & Massey (of Warrington). Construction then took just under two years, with the foundation stone being laid on 14th October 1961 by Bishop Murphy, and the official opening by Bishop Grasar on 25th April 1963. The church was dedicated to St Raphael, one of the three Archangels named in the Bible.



    The church closed just short of fifty years of service, holding its final mass on 11th July 2011, after an estimated repair bill of an £250,000 could not be met and several parishioners moved to St Joseph’s in nearby Mossley. The church was Grade II listed shortly after its closure in December 2011 for several reasons, most notably its design and the large stained-glass window by Pierre Fourmaintraux.

    It has remained empty but went up for sale in June 2017 for £450,000. However, it never sold and has sat slowly deteriorating with a bad roof leak now adding to its problems.

    2. The Explore
    Visited with Bikin Glyn. Entry was a bit of a challenge. Exit a doddle. Interesting place. Relatively untouched but starting to show the signs of decline. In some ways quite sparse and typical of 60s architecture. The focal points were the dome, the light fittings and the stained glass. Think I prefer my churches more traditional, but this was an interesting first explore on a busy day in Lancashire.

    3. The Pictures

    Nothing special from the outside:

    Millbrook 01 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Love the rectangle light fitting:

    Millbrook 03 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4746 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    And this one. Very 60s:

    img4733 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4727 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Pretty minimalist. Not too sure what AM stands for. Maybe Archangel Millbrook?

    Millbrook 04 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4729 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Millbrook 05 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Millbrook 06 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    Millbrook 07 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4739 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    The rooms off from the main part were showing the greatest signs of decay:

    Millbrook 02 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    The stained-glass window by Fourmaintraux is the best bit:

    img4730 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4740 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4743 by HughieDW, on Flickr

    img4744 by HughieDW, on Flickr

  2. Thanks given by: Hugh Jorgan, KJurbex, KPUrban_, Mearing, smiler, tony willett
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  4. #2
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    Sort of like marmite? a love-hate building of its time.
    Nice photos Hughie.

  5. #3
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    Cracking place, keep meaning to go here 👍

  6. Thanks given by: HughieD
  7. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wakey Lad View Post
    Cracking place, keep meaning to go here ��
    Deffo worth the trip mate.

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