St Paul’s Church, Peel is an active Anglican parish church in Little Hulton, Greater Manchester. It serves the parish of Peel, part of the benefice of Walkden and Little Hulton, in the Salford and Leigh Deanery in the Manchester Diocese.
Its origins were in a chapel built in 1760 on an adjacent site. The church is a Grade II listed building, designed by J. Medland and Henry Taylor.
The old Peel Chapel was built by the Yates family in 1760, and it was consecrated as a chapelry in the Parish of Deane. The new church was built immediately to the south of the chapel, and its foundation stone was laid by Lord Kenyon in August 1874 and the chapel was demolished; the chapelry became a district parish in March 1874.
The new church was designed by J. Medland Taylor and Henry Taylor in the Early English Gothic style with Decorated details. It is built of sandstone from Peel Quarry with a slate roof and bellcoteShelter containing one or more bells.. The naveCentral part of a church, used by the laiety., chancelPart of a church containing the altar, used by the officiating clergy. and aisles, lower part of the western tower and a porch were built between 1874 and 1876 and consecrated by the Bishop of Manchester in December 1876. The tower and broach spire were added in 1897. Construction cost about £5,500,and the tower and spire another £2,000.
The church, built on projecting plinths, has a nave and four-bay aisles with separate roofs which terminate short of the nave at the west end. The bays are separated by buttresses and each has a pair of two-light windows above a continuous sill band. The two-bay chancel is taller than the nave and has a five-light east window. The four-stage west tower has angled buttresses and a west door above which is a four-light west window. The belfry has paired two-light openings under a broach spire set back behind a parapet. The spire is 140 feet (43 m) tall.
Inside, the nave has a hammer-beam roofStructural framework of timbers designed to bridge the space above a room and to provide support for a roof. ; its arcade is carried on short cylindrical columns with moulded and decorated capitals. The wide chancel arch is supported on quatrefoil columns made of Runcorn and Bath stone. The pierced stone chancel rail incorporates the pulpit which is made of either gypsum or alabaster with green Connemara marble pillars carved into scenes from the life of St Paul. The lectern has carvings of flowers and ferns and the head of a king at its base.
The reredosLarge ornamented wall, screen, or other structure placed behind the altar in a Christian church. is made from carved alabaster probably from the Blue John mines in Derbyshire. Some of the stained glass windows are by Shrigley and Hunt. A window over the font made of painted and fired porcelain was saved from the old Peel Chapel. A brass plaque from 1759 on the clergy vestry door, one of several pew plates saved from the old chapel, is inscribed “Geo. Kenyon Esq.”
The churchyard contains Little Hulton’s War Memorial, a granite Roman cross on a hexagonal plinth. It contains the names of 120 casualties from the First World War and 37 from the Second. It also contains the Commonwealth War Graves of 11 casualties of the First and Second World Wars. A listed chest tomb of about 1788 in memory of the Hewitt family of Peel Hall is a survivor from the old Peel Chapel.
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