Tour Of Lytham St Annes Churches
This was a great opportunity to take part in a guided coach tour of the churches of Lytham St Annes and discover the heritage on our doorstep.
Vice Chair of DFAS and Expert in Church Architecture, Philip Bailey, was our guide for the day, providing a running commentary, both on the coach and in the churches.
This was a half-day whistle-stop tour of around 14 churches. Most of them we viewed from the coach while Philip pointed out items of archiitectural interest. We went inside five: St Cuthberts; St Josephs RC; St Annes Parish Church; Lytham Methodist Church, and the White Church at Ansdell which is to be the subject of Fylde DFAS’s first church recording exercise
Philip helped us to identify items of interest such as the Burne Jones/William Morris stained glass window in St. Cuthberts in Lytham which is well worth a visit. Once the window was pointed out to us it was clear how different in style it was from the other windows and we could see its Pre-Raphaelite influences. The stained glass in the White Church is also quite spectacular and many of us were embarrassed that we had walked past this church many times without being aware of its beautiful interior.
Although the churches were built at roughly the same time we came to see that they have a wide variety of character from the gothic style St Josephs designed by Pugin and Pugin to the neo-classical Methodist Church.
Other features of interest included a giant tapestry on display in the Parish Church of St Annes, embroidered by the Church Broderers Guild in the 1990s, which shows places and events of note in the history of St Annes-on-Sea and its church.
This was a really interesting and absorbing trip and we all felt we’d learnt a lot about our local heritage. It was also an absolute bargain – transport costs only!Philip is hoping to do another one early next year when we can travel further afield.
The December lecture on stained glass gave many of us an appetite to see more and I will definitely be signing up for future trips. Our thanks to Philip and also to all those who opened up the churches for us.