Treasures Revealed St. Aidan


Picture of detail of mosaic at church of St Aidan at Harehills, Leeds.

Paul wrote on this day: “Yesterday I revisited the church of St Martin at Potternewton, Leeds and then went to have a look at St Aidan’s church in Harehills. I lived in Harehills for around 1 year when I was a student in Leeds many years back, so I know the area pretty well. Although I had walked around the outside of the church of St Aidan I had never been beyond the locked door. I knew St Aidans was large form the exterior but it was quite a bit bigger inside than I had thought. Everything about St Aidan’s is on an almost Soviet era scale but especially the font and the pillars.

The one thing most people know about St Aidan’s is the mosaics by Frank Brangwyn, these were completed in 1916. Originally Brangwyn was commissioned to decorate the church with a painting, but he worried about the smoky atmosphere in the area damaging the work so he started anew and produced a mosaic instead. The mosaic in the apse shows scenes from the life of St Aidan and it like the church itself is on a grand scale. In the above picture can be seen a length of a mosaic on the stairway leading up to the altar with some of the main mosaic above and beyond this.”

Leeds Parish Church

Leeds-Parish-Church
Picture of Leeds Parish Church.

This view of Leeds Parish Church is not the one that most people would think of. I took this photo looking at the side of the church from the West. Because of the proximity of nearby buildings you cannot get further away which would enable a bit more of the tower to be visible.

This current church was built by the then Vicar of Leeds Walter Farquhar Hook (13 March 1798 – 20 October 1875) and it was consecrated on 2 September 1841 with Florence Nightingale in the congregation.

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Church of St Mark, Woodhouse, Leeds

Church of St. Marks in Leeds.
This is a picture of the church of Saint Mark, Woodhouse, here in Leeds.

I have visited this old Waterloo church several times in the last year, I have photographed the churchyard of the church of Saint Mark in snow and with wildflowers in late spring.

Time has not dealt this tall Victorian church a good hand in the game of life, despite the fact that the builders used fine materials and good workmanship. Today it is besieged by vandals and since I last visited something has happened to a large chunk of the front wall. I am not sure of the cause, people stealing the stone or perhaps a vehicle crashing into this section, either way it is not looking good.

On a brighter note, the Yorkshire Evening Post recently ran a story “The fight to save a landmark Leeds church which has links to the Battle of Waterloo has ended in victory after a grant of £171,000 was offered by English Heritage to repair it.” So perhaps there is light at the end of the tunnel for this Grade II listed church.