Building Christ Church: 1935 to 1944

Building Christ Church: 1935 to 1944

1a Cambridge Avenue

From the beginning of its history, Christ Church has had full time vergers tasked with care of the buildings and clerical tasks. In 1936 a house at 1a Cambridge Avenue was built next to the Parish Halls to accommodate the new verger Albert Jones (1936-1965) and his wife.

Since then it has been occupied by Brian Smith, Cyril Allman (verger for one month before his fatal heart attack in May 1972), John Apps, Jim Percival, Len Leeming and David Taylor. A kitchen extension and porch were added to the house in 1978. Together with the Parish Halls, the house is due to be sold in 2017 and new accommodation for the Caretaker provided by converting the loft above the Orchard Room.

St John's

A major development during this period was the building of St John’s on the Kingston Road to replace the Mission Church that was constructed in 1885 and 1898. The Foundation stone of St John’s was laid on June 24th 1939 and the new church dedicated on January 7th 1940.

From this point St John’s was referred to as a ‘daughter church’ of Christ Church led by a curate-in-charge. In more recent times we have preferred the language of a ‘sister church’ led by an Associate Vicar.

In the first Parish History, William Authers declares 'Without Mr Habershon it is certain the Church of St John the Divine would never have been built', paying particular tribute to his 'well-furnished mind, unflinching courage, and overwhelming faith' in dealing with the many challenges that needed to be faced during the development.

Christ Church and the Vicarage

A postcard of Christ Church from this period shows the fashion for letting ivy cover buildings, which was common during this period.

A similar covering with ivy is seen with the Vicarage.

Another photo from 1936 shows the Communion Table in the Chancel, decorated for Harvest.

Building CCNM 1921-35

Willoughby Habershon

Life at CCNM 1935-44

Building CCNM 1944-58