All Saints’ Hampton, Middlesex

From the website of the Twickenham Museum:

Hampton in 1914

In 1914 the north-west corner of Hampton, adjoining Hanworth, was completely dominated by nurseries and glasshouses (marked as cross-hatched buildings on the maps). The proliferation of Nurseries was a result of the failure to develop Marling Park (earlier Tangley Park) and all its farmland; the nurseries and glasshouses provided the next best financial return on the land after building. This land was destined to continue in use as nurseries until the Nurserylands housing development of the late 1970s onwards. (St James’s Church): “The principal growers were Sherwood’s, Page’s, Gill’s and Milne’s Flowers who grew mainly carnations and daffodils.” One of the comparatively few buildings in this area at this time was All Saints Church, opened a few years before in 1908, which established a separate parish for the northern part of Hampton.

The north-east corner of Hampton which abuts Hampton Hill was only partly developed at this time. Roads such as Broad Lane still had much open land and nurseries in them as well as a certain amount of housing. The Uxbridge Road that turns off High Street and passes the northern edge of the Manor House Estate, which itself had not then been developed, was largely empty at its western and eastern ends with some older housing clustered in the middle. The isolation hospital, opened in 1904, had been positioned towards the western end of the road for good reason…”

From the website of All Saints’ Hampton:

“Until 1850 Hampton was a small country village by the River Thames, bordered by farmland and heath. The building of the railway linking Hampton with London in 1864 encouraged both residential development and the establishment of market gardens. By the end of the century the need for a new church in the northwest of Hampton as a place of prayer and worship became clear.

Soon plans were underway: a site was selected and a competition was held to design a new church with a large detached bell tower. The winning plans (by the prolific church architects FH Greenaway and JE Newberry) were chosen and a variety of fund raising events were held. In June 1908 the foundation stone was laid by Princess Helena (a daughter of Queen Victoria). It was a happy event with bands, flags, processions, presentation of gifts and tea parties. Finally the church of All Saints’ was consecrated in November 1908.

However the church was not built to its original design!  Why? Quite simply the money ran out!  Initially two phases of building were planned. Phase1, which involved building the first two thirds of the church, was successfully completed as scheduled and a temporary plaster board wall was built at the west end. But the outbreak of the First World War and the financial constraints of its aftermath put an end to further fund raising and building. The west end wall and porch were finally completed in 1970. The bell tower was not built.

After its consecration in 1908 All Saints’ began a life of its own, and although not independent of the parish church for another 22 years, it had its own priest-in-charge, church council and churchwardens.  Set amidst fields, lanes, hedgerows, over 100 market gardens and newly built houses, the church had its own special rural charm.  From the beginning it served the needs of its growing population in a genuine but unpretentious way with Sunday services, baptisms, weddings, funerals and a variety of social and pastoral activities.  It finally became a parish church in its own right in 1929…”

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