The Arts & Crafts church was an eccentric notion – new churches built around 1900, when Britain was no longer a church-going nation, and belief in God was no longer obligatory. And yet the aesthetic urge remained in architects, and spiritual searching still drove their clients. This talk sets the scene, briefly, with a few of the more famous Arts & Crafts churches; then examines churches imagined, but never built; churches that puzzle, delight and confound expectation; and, poignantly, some which no longer survive, and why.
This lecture is given by Dr Alec Hamilton. Dr Hamilton completed his DPhil – ‘The Arts & Crafts in church-building in Britain 1884-1918’ – at Oxford in 2016. His book, Arts & Crafts Churches, was published by Lund Humphries in September 2020, and is available from their website.
He first researched Arts & Crafts churches as part of a Fine Art BA in 2004; then followed an MA on the work of the Arts & Crafts architect Charles Spooner (the book Charles Spooner: Arts & Crafts Architect was published in 2012).
He has lectured widely on Arts & Crafts subjects, and on individual churches, especially Gloucester Cathedral, and the churches of the Wye and Severn Valleys.
More recently he has given online talks on Arts & Crafts churches for the Victorian Society, and the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain (SAHGB).