Webpage created: February 12, 2016.
Webpage updated: February 15, 2016
ANGLICAN CHURCH OF SAINT CLEMENT OF ROME
The Anglican Church of Saint Clement of Rome (Pope Clement I) was situated in Warleigh Avenue, Keyham Barton, until it was destroyed in the Second World War.
It was built to serve an increasing population living in the Ford/Keyham district, supposedly numbering between 13,000 and 14,000 souls. The Church of Saint Thomas had already been opened and was destined to become a parish church in its own right but Saint Clement's seems never to have been planned as such, being merely a chapel-of-ease to Saint Mark's, Ford. It was the twelfth and last church to be erected under the Three Towns' Church Extension Scheme.
The foundation stone was laid by the Bishop of Winchester, Dr Talbot, during a Diocesan Conference in Plymouth. It was dedicated and licensed by the Bishop of Exeter at 4pm on Saturday November 22nd 1913, the day before Saint Clement's Day.
Saint Clement's was designed by Mr Charles Cheverton of Chapel Street, Devonport, and because it was not planned as a parish church, was constructed of plain Wellington red brick, with buff brick dressings and red culter-bricks for the arches and window coigns. It cost around £4,000, including fittings, of which some £250 had still to be raised at the time of its opening. It was built by Mr Stanbury of Devonport.
A flight of steps led to a porch, from which both the church and the senior school were entered, these being only separated by glazed, sliding partitions. The church portion would normally accommodate 120 persons but this would be increased to 400 if the partitions were pushed back. The roof was open timbered, covered with Delabole slates. Beyond the nave, which measured 34 feet by 30 feet, was the chancel where the clergy and choir vestries and organ chamber were situated. The chancel 18 feet by 27 feet. The nave contained chairs while the furniture and fittings in the chancel were of plain wrought oak, including the altar table, cross and candlesticks, credence and alms dish, all of which were designed by the architect. The building was heated by steam from gas-heated radiators and lit by incandescent gas burners.
The senior school, on the ground floor, could accommodate 200 children and be accessed from either the front porch or the rear lane. Beneath it was the infants' school, for 230 children, also with access front and rear.
The Reverend J Heywood Waddington was the vicar at the time of the opening.
On November 23rd 1952 a memorial to the Church, the Saint Clement's Light, was dedicated at The Church of Saint Mark Church at Ford.