View Full Version : Archived: Mount St Marys Church, Leeds, 14th May 2008

04-06-2008, 07:46 PM
Visited with freebird +3. I know there's a bit of history out there already but here's my take on info i can find out. Mount St Marys Church is a grade two (star) listed building that was opened in 1857-now 151 years ago! It closed in 1989 mainly due to dwindling church attendance, now it stands abandoned & on deconsecrated land some 19 years later. It is built high on the summit of the Richmond Hill area of Leeds & can reputedly be seen for miles around.
Dubbed locally as ‘The Famine Church’ after the Irish community (who were still recovering from the Irish potato crop failure after six successive years from 1845-1851) who were centred in Leeds in this area raised the funds to build this cathedral sized church. There were many other community establishments here too-schools, care for the sick & poor, an orphnage & of course the church, so important amongst the catholic people. There was a plan (& a fund established) around 1916 to build two massive western tower blocks but however none were ever built.
The church is now due to be partly converted/mostly demolished! The naive & aisles are to be knocked down to build a seven storey block of 62.......FLATS! The chapel & transepts (designed 1n 1866 by architect Edward Pugin) will be retained & restored. The presbytery will be knocked down & replaced by a five storey block of 109.......FLATS!
The church despite the best efforts of thieves, vandals & pigeons is in remarkably good condition (too good to just knock part of it down!) with many original features remaining. The presbytery is in a poor & dangerous state due to fire & water egress& it’s a shame to see it this way.
All in all a wonderfully BIG church, dangerous presbytery & fantastic photo opportunities! Cheers.

Outside view of the church behind the alter

Another darker view from outside

In one of the rooms of the presbytery, this building is in a bad way! :sick:

Looking up one of the pillars to the roof

Looking along & down from around 15' up a pillar

The alter with a beautiful stained glass window above :)

A closer view of the window

A view showing some of the wonderful colours on display in here

This place is almost the size of some cathedrals!

The setting sun was lighting things up SO well

Found hidden away on one of the walls

Looking down the length of the nave from the alter

The ceiling above the alter is stunning

Two of the original exterior doors-i'll not be leaving through these today

I hope you've enjoyed this selection, for even more pics please feel free to check out my Flickr page below. Cheers ;)