Church building external

St. Mark’s Church was built in 1842, on land given and with funds raised by Lord Stuart de Rothesay of Highcliffe Castle, a distinguished diplomat, at that time Ambassador to Russia. It was originally a simple building, the work of a local man, John Bemister, though there is good evidence that the respected architect Benjamin Ferrey had some input. Its structure and appearance now is the result of many changes over the years, most recently and extensively in 1990 and 1991, when the foyer, the choir vestry and other rooms were added and the gallery was replaced, while at the same time the library and the cloister were built.

The stained and painted glass in the church is chiefly Victorian and unexceptional, but there is a striking modern window by Henry Haig at the west end. There are memorials to Lord Stuart de Rothesay, his wife and his two daughters, and of historical interest there is the memorial to his son-in-law Lord Canning, Governor-General of India during the Mutiny of 1857 and first Viceroy. A curiosity in its present setting is the carved stone arch above the door in the east wall of the north transept, which is thought to be French of the fourteenth century.

   Stained Glass close up

 The East Window

A page showing the history of the East Window and of its builders James Powell & Sons (Whitefriars) can be found HERE