St. Katharine's, The Danish Church
St. Katharine’s Church was built in 1826-8 as an Anglican chapel for the Royal Hospital of St. Katharine, a religious hospice. The church was designed in the Perpendicular style by Ambrose Poynter, a pupil of John Nash. It is on the north-eastern edge of Regents Park and it is listed Grade II*. The building is leased from the Crown Estate.
Today, the church is used regularly and is well maintained. However, the fine ashlar masonry externally was in very poor condition due the corrosion of embedded iron cramps causing stone decay. The stone degradation had greatly compromised the appearance of the principal elevations, and as such St. Katharine’s was placed on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register.
MFA were appointed in 2015 to perform a detailed and costed condition survey report to support an HLF stage 1 bid. Following HLF success, MFA was Lead Consultant for the documentation and oversight of urgent repair works to the fine ashlar masonry, made possible by the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Listed Places of Worship Scheme.
Highly creative and cost effective engineering solutions were utilised to carefully repair the stone turrets using a new internal stainless steel structure that enabled the failing embedded ironwork to be carefully removed without the need to re-build the turrets. This preserved far more original fabric in accordance with best conservation practice and proved far more cost-effective. Value engineering and re-prioritisation of the repairs throughout the project ensured that it was delivered within the allocated budget. The clock was also restored and turret access to the roof was greatly improved.
MFA provided the Management and Maintenance Plan for the Church moving forward and supported the church in all of their reporting and submissions to the HLF.