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St Andrew’s Church mural

Restoration of mural damaged by water

St Andrew’s is a Grade II listed Church in Stoke Newington, designed by Arthur Blomfield and opened in 1884. It stood originally in a green field site and served a large congregation, with over 300 people attended each of the three Sunday services in the 19th century. The area of London in which the church is situated has since become a hub for an Orthodox Jewish community and the congregation of St Andrew’s now remains at around a steady 45.

The church’s stone exterior is quite plain but inside it has an extensive range of wall paintings and stained glass by Heaton, Butler and Bayne. The chronological Life of Christ is depicted in an extensive sequence of wall paintings. The painting at the west end was added in 1914 (later than the rest of the scheme) after the tapestry previously occupying this wall was removed. The scheme in this painting combines the Creed, the Ten Commandments and the Lord’s Prayer with memorial shields, including the arms of Stoke Newington and Hackney. The painting runs over the surface of the 1906 electrical pipes.

In recent decades the large west window of St Andrews had failed and rainwater had streaked this painting. A vertical crack had also opened in the centre of the wall from structural movement. The restoration performed by HOLT cleaned the surface of the whole west end, removing staining, repairing losses to paint, and reinstating missing letters. The open crack was repaired, grouted, and painted over. The restoration carried out by HOLT has helped to restore the impact of the distinctive west wing wall painting (marred by past water damage) and facilitate the connections the church is developing with local schools—connections centring upon the educational value of its interior art. HOLT previoulsy gave a grant to St Andrew's Church in 2015 for the 'Those Who Returned' WWI memorial.

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