The Creation of St Paul's Goodmayes

The original parish of St. Chad, Chadwell Heath, was created in 1895, and included part of Goodmayes, formerly areas that were part of St. Mary Ilford. What is now the parish of St. Paul`s was, at the turn of the last century, part of the ecclesiastical district of St. Chad`s, Chadwell Heath. At a meeting on 13th June 1901, reference was made to the amount of building taking place on the Mayfield Estate. About 420 houses had been built in the preceding eighteen months, 300 of which were occupied, representing perhaps 1,500 people. More were to be built on the south side of the railway line and there was a clear need for a church in this part of the district.
 
The Vicar of St. Chad`s, the Revd. J. P. Shawcross read a letter from the Bishop of St. Alban`s, in which diocese the area then fell, expressing encouragement. The Vicar said Chadwell Heath had developed in a startling manner since the ecclesiastical district had been formed. Services had been held at the ‘Chadwell Board School’ for the convenience of those living in the western part of the district. Mr. Cameron Corbett MP, had been approached to see whether he could provide a site on the Mayfield Estate for a church. He had been unable to give a site but offered to reduce the price of a suitable site in Barley Lane. The site was purchased by the St. Alban`s Diocesan Trust at a cost of £210. Together with a piece of land to be provided by well-wishers, the site for the church would be 100 x 150 feet. The Vicar also said that he had been appointed Chaplain of West Ham Asylum (now Goodmayes Hospital) and this would enable him to engage a curate for the western part of the area. A building Committee was formed to secure the building of such part of the Church as seemed to be advisable and expedient. They moved speedily; and by the end of 1901 plans had been drawn up for a Church, the estimated cost of which was £4,950. The ‘South Chapel’ was to be built first and would account for £550. The estimate was revised and a decision to proceed with the building of the Chapel at a cost of £820 was taken on 11th December 1902.
 
The Lady Chapel was completed within a few months after the Laying of the Foundation Stone and it's Dedication at a ‘Full Choral Evensong’ by the Bishop of St. Albans, the Rt. Revd. Dr. Edgar Jacobs on 23rd May 1903. Services were held in what is now the Lady Chapel while work on the nave and side aisles was in hand. It was completed towards the end of 1915. The church remained a chapel-of-ease to St. Chad until 1917, when St. Paul`s became a separate parish, the advowson of the vicarage being vested in the Bishop of Chelmsford. The first Vicar of St. Paul was Revd. L.A. Hort from 1917 to 1924.

The Church is of the period of Gothic architecture, which prevailed at the close of the 14th Century. The materials used are red brick with stone dressing. Messrs. Chancellor & Son of Chelmsford and London were the architects and the contractors for the first portion of the building were Messrs. Brown & Son of Braintree. The building was completed by additions in 1905, 1917 and 1929.
 
The completed church was finally consecrated by the Lord Bishop of Chelmsford, The Right Reverend John Edwin on Thursday 22nd March 1917, when St Paul's became the independamnt parish church of Goodmayes.
 
CENTENARY: A Mass of Our Lady was held at St. Paul`s on 23rd May 2003 to celebrate the Centenary of the laying of the Foundation Stone.


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