St Clement King Square - The Worshipful Company of Parish Clerks

St Clement King Square

• Church Building Commission purchased the land in King Square from the St Bartholomew's Hospital in 1822 and ordered a construction of a new church. The government had set aside a fund of £1 million “for building new churches in populous places”, in thanksgiving for victory over the French in the Napoleonic Wars. And St Luke’s parish was chosen to be the site of one of these so-called “Waterloo” churches. St Clement’s Church, consecrated originally to St Barnabas, was designed to be a “chapel of ease” (an extra place of worship for those in a parish to far from the parish church, or for extra space if the parish church was too small). Certainly the area was becoming a populous place. The orchards that covered the area in the 18th century were, by the 1820s, giving way to smart new developments on the city fringe, including King Square (named after the newly-crowned King George IV).

• The foundation stone was laid on 27 January 1822. French ex-prisoners-of-war and the local community were likely involved in the construction.

• The building was designed by architect Philip Hardwick, the designer of Euston Station. The design style was ancient Greek (Ionic), however the building also featured a spire.

• Construction was completed in July 1824 and cost £17,000 in total. The church had space for 1600 worshippers; it was consecrated as St Barnabas, King Square on 12 June 1826. At the time the church was part of the St Luke's parish; it was assigned a separate parish in 1846.

• The church suffered minor damage from bombing by German aircraft during the London Blitz in 1940 during the Second World War. In 1952 the parishes of St Barnabas, St Clement, Lever Street and St Matthew, City Road were united due to the fact that the other two churches were badly damaged through wartime bombing.

• The inside of the church was redecorated and refitted in 1953, including some of the ornaments from St Clement’s church, and was re-consecrated on 12th June 1954. • The parish changed its name to St Clement with St Barnabas and St Matthew and the church began to be known as St Clement's.

• The church organ was built by "Father" Willis for St Thomas, Agar Town in the 1870s and moved to its present location in 1950s, with some alterations, by Manders.

• The building is Grade II listed


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