Thursday, July 7, 2011

Saint Andrew by the Wardrobe

Walking around London a couple of months ago I came across a building, which for many is easily ignored. This building is the Church of St. Andrew by the Wardrobe, near St. Paul's Cathedral in London. From outside it looks like a public building and the warn out signs next to the pavement hides the fact that it is a place of worship. However its beauty and warmth lies within, where woodwork from a previous time adds character to the Church. 

St Andrew's Church was burnt down in the Great Fire and bombed out in the Blitz. The current building is a complete reconstruction existing within Wren's walls.  The details found in the interior of the Church are a reproduction of previous designs. 

The history of this Church dates back to the 13th century when it was associated with Baynard's Castle, a royal residence that has long disappeared. St. Andrew's was given the name "by the Wardrobe" due to the fact that King Edward III moved his state robes and other effects from the Tower of London to a large building close by and the Church was known for its affiliation with the Great Wardrobe. The name remained to highlight its location, although the King's store room is only remembered in Wardrobe Place. 

During the course of time it has acquired many antique fitments from various other churches, destroyed in WWII.

Today it is a lovely Church, with The English Chamber Choir and a Girl's Choir. Although St Andrew's is Church of England it holds Roman Catholic Mass, bringing together the two distinct Christian groups, which is evident in the above picture.  

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