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Lavino

UK St. Paul's church denholme Bradford November 2016

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Visited with @gk-wax and @dangle_angle this place is in a very bad state with holes everywhere roofs floors and crumbling walls inside. And a overgrown graveyard. And pigeon shit everywhere. But as we were passing through we popped in to take a look. So here's a few photos and history.

Denholme was part of the Chapelry of Thornton in the Parish of Bradford whose records began in 1678.  In 1826 the Church of St. Matthew, Wilsden was built and Denholme became part of this new Parish. It became a separate Parish in 1846 when St Paul’s Church was built at Denholme Gate, between Denholme and Denholme Clough. It was to serve both areas and it was thought that they would grow towards each other, with the new building at the heart. But after the building of Denholme Mills by the Fosters, Denholme expanded and left Denholme Clough behind, with the Church in an undeveloped area between.  The land for the Church was given by William Buck, one of the largest landowners in the area. The building, which was completed in 1846, was designed by J B Cantrill and is Early English style with a gothic tower. It cost £3,700 which was raised partly by subscription but also by grants from the Ecclesiastical Commissioners and the Incorporated and Ripon Diocesan Societies. The east window, of beautiful stained glass, was presented by Mr Jonathan Knowles.
In 1997, soon after the 150th Anniversary, it was found that the ceiling and roof were unsafe. The church closed quickly for repairs and the congregation met, temporarily, in the Mechanics Institute. The repairs needed were found to be extensive and with great reluctance, the building and part of the churchyard were put up for sale.  A final Open Air Service of Farewell was held in the new graveyard on Sunday 5th September 1999.   After meeting in the temporary premises of the Mechanics Institute, in 2001 the Bradford Diocese purchased a property on Longhouse Lane, a former doctors' surgery.  Despite its limitations, the building was lovingly put to use and adapted as a church.  The congregation continued to meet there until August 2008 when they found a new home as part of the Shared Church.

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