St George Hanover Square - The Worshipful Company of Parish Clerks

St George Hanover Square

• St George's, Hanover Square, was built in the early 18th century. A civil parish of St George Hanover Square and an ecclesiastical parish were created in 1724 from part of the ancient parish of St Martin in the Fields. The boundaries of the ecclesiastical parish were adjusted in 1830, 1835 and 1865 when other parishes were carved out of it. The ecclesiastical parish still exists today and forms part of the Deanery of Westminster, St Margaret in the Diocese of London.

• The church was constructed between 1721-25 and funded by the Commission for Building Fifty New Churches and designed by John James, who had been one of the two surveyors to the commission since 1716. Its portico, supported by six Corinthian columns, projects across the pavement. There is a tower just behind the portico, rising from the roof above the west end of the nave.

• Due to its Mayfair location, it has been a frequent venue of high society weddings. It was here that Theodore Roosevelt, the future US President, aged 28, married Edith Carow, aged 25, on 2 December 1886. Henry Holland married Capability Brown's daughter Bridget on the 11th February 1773 and John Nash married Mary Ann Bradley on the 17th December 1798. Other notable people married there include, on 2 February 1858, Ann Jeffrey and Samuel Parkes who won the Victoria Cross in the Charge of the Light Brigade for saving the life of Trumpeter Hugh Crawford.

• In the musical My Fair Lady, Alfred Doolittle (Stanley Holloway), having just been provided with an inheritance and having to move into "middle-class morality", invites his daughter Eliza Doolittle (Audrey Hepburn) to his wedding at this church. Following the invitation, he and his fellows sing "Get Me to the Church on Time".

• George Frederick Handel was a regular worshipper at St George's, which is now home to the annual Handel Festival. St. George's has a full time professional choir and a strong choral tradition and is an outstanding venue for classical music concerts. A Restoration Fund Appeal was launched on Trinity Sunday 2006 to raise a total of five million pounds, with a target of one and a half million pounds needed for the first phase of essential restoration work to the fabric of the church.


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