St Leonard's Church, Bridgnorth, Shropshire
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A vast church with an explosive history
The proud red Gothic tower of St Leonard's dominates Bridgnorth's skyline. Surrounding it is an oval of charming houses, almost like a cathedral close. Inside, the church has the airy vastness of a cathedral - the size is breathtaking.
The width of the nave and aisles together is not much less than that of St Paul's Cathedral in London and as you walk in from the door under the tower you get an extraordinary sense of space being slowly revealed. Seemingly medieval, it is in fact almost entirely a Victorian restoration. This is because disaster struck during the Civil War when St Leonard's was used by Cromwell's troops as an ammunition store. A cannon shot caused it to explode, and fire swept through the town. The church was repaired, and in the seventeenth-century, the magnificent nave roof was installed.
Most of the current church dates from the nineteenth century building campaign under the Revd George Bellett, whose monument is in the church. The interior is beautiful - look out for the umbrella stands on the pews. All the woodwork, stained glass, tiles and stonework inside are of exceptionally high quality and there are a number of interesting memorials to well-known townspeople over the centuries. The most unusual are the four cast-iron monuments dating from 1692 to 1707, probably made at Richard Knight's ironworks nearby.
21 July 2018 - 21 July 2018
A Church Tourism Week event - Want to know more about bell-ringing? Take a tower tour and enjoy a demonstration!
Sloping path to main door. Steps up to chancel and altar.
Disabled access information
Wheelchair access is possible along a stone path through the churchyard, but there are cobbles outside the main door and a step up to the choir and altar.
Facilities & Hire
Due to the historic nature of our buildings, only a small number have heating, running water or toilet facilities. The lighting is usually operated via a 'push button' timer or a motion sensor.
Centre of Bridgnorth High Town, via High Street, Church street and St Leonard's Close.
Nearest railway stations: Telford (10 miles), Wolverhampton (14 miles) and Bridgnorth Severn Valley Railway. Bus routes via Arriva buses.
History & Further Information
Why not make your visit more enjoyable and informed by finding out more about this church before you visit? You can download a range of publications below including the relevant county guide, and any walk round guides we have for this church.Shropshire County Guide 2012
This free of charge short guide contains details of all the churches we care for in Shropshire. Printed copies of the county guide are also available at the church. A walk round guide for St Leonard's Church, Bridgnorth This short, full colour walk round guide contains a floor plan of the church and highlights of things to see during your visit. You can purchase a printed copy of this from the church (50p) or download in advance (free/optional donation).
Community information forSt Leonard's Church, Bridgnorth
All our Shropshire churches are in our North region.
Useful local links:
- Shropshire Tourist Information
- Shropshire Tourism website
- Secret Shropshire website
- Shropshire Family History Society
- Family Days Out in Shropshire
- Shropshire Days Out website
- Shropshire History website
- Shropshire Historic Churches Trust
- Shropshire County Council Discover Shropshire website
- Shropshire Archaeological & History Society
- Ironbridge Gorge Museum
- Visit Ironbridge
- Ironbridge Gorge Guide
- Shropshire is in the Diocese of Hereford and the Diocese of Lichfield
- List of churches in Shropshire