Our Lady Star of the Sea Church, Lowestoft

Our Lady Star of the Sea Church is a Roman CatholicParish church in Lowestoft, Suffolk. It is situated on Gordon Road in the centre of the town. It was founded by the Diocese of Northampton in 1881 and it is now administered by the Diocese of East Anglia.[2] The church is in the Arts and Crafts style, the architects were George Baines and F.W. Richards, and it is a Grade II listed building.[1] It is the most easterly Catholic parish church in the entire British Isles.[3]

Church in Lowestoft, United Kingdom
Our Lady Star of the Sea Church

OS grid reference TM548931
Location Lowestoft
Country United Kingdom
Denomination Roman Catholic
Website OurLadyLowestoft.com
Status Parish church
Founder(s) Diocese of Northampton
Dedication St Mary
Functional status Active
Heritage designation Grade II listed
Designated 21 June 1993[1]
Architect(s) George Baines and F.W. Richards
Style Gothic Revival
Groundbreaking August 1900
Completed 5 June 1902
Deanery Great Yarmouth[2]
Diocese East Anglia
Province Westminster

. . . Our Lady Star of the Sea Church, Lowestoft . . .

From 1867, the Catholic community in Lowestoft was served by a Jesuitmission from St Mary’s Church, Great Yarmouth. The small Catholic population worshipped in rooms hired in three different buildings in Lowestoft until a permanent chapel was established in a net loft in 1881, when the diocesan parish was founded under the leadership of Apostolic Missionary, Fr. Geoffrey Brennan.[citation needed] However, the chapel became too small to accommodate the increasing congregation, and under a new priest Fr. Alexander Scott, fundraising was started in order that a larger location could be bought.[4]

Construction of the church began in August 1900 when the foundation stone was laid. The architects were from the local area, George Baines and F. W. Richards. They designed the church to be in the Arts and Crafts style. George Baines was born in 1852 and started work in Great Yarmouth. Although, most of the churches he designed were for the Baptists, he also designed churches for the denominations.[5] F. W. Richards had his practice on Stanley Street, Lowestoft and also designed the Primitive Methodist Chapel in Oulton Broad, Suffolk.[6] On 5 June 1902, the church was opened and it hosted its first Mass.[4]

On 13 March 1976 the Diocese of Northampton split into two dioceses, continuing in the west as Northampton and in the east as a new Diocese of East Anglia with Lowestoft still the easternmost parish in the land. [citation needed]

In 2017, the church received £25,400 from the Heritage Lottery Fund, this was to help repair the exterior of the church building.[7]

. . . Our Lady Star of the Sea Church, Lowestoft . . .

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. . . Our Lady Star of the Sea Church, Lowestoft . . .