Monday, 11 June 2012

St Mark's, Wimbledon, Greater London

St Mark’s is a friendly Anglican church in the liberal Catholic tradition, just a stone’s throw from Wimbledon rail and underground station.

The church itself is of modern design, built in brick around a concrete frame in 1968-9 to designs by Humphrys & Hurst in association with David Nye, replacing a late Victorian church. Very unusually for a church, it is pentagonal in layout, with five large concrete arches meeting at a central point to give a spacious tent-like interior, incorporating a roof-top lantern.

The walls are pierced by rectangular windows filled with vibrantly coloured modern glass, portraying elements of the creation: look carefully and there are planets, fish and whales. Although very much of its time, it works well as a worship space: worship is effectively in the round, with a large sanctuary (and the longest altar I’ve ever seen) surrounded by pews on three sides.

The church also has a small chapel, as well as a church hall and an attractive lawned area at the rear - a small green oasis (complete with a wooden play castle for children).

Worship is in a modern, liberal Catholic style (but no incense), and attracts a friendly mixed-age congregation. There is a creche and a Sunday School for children, and there is a youth group for those aged 13-18.

St Mark's Place, Wimbledon, London SW19 7ND

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