Campbell Smith’s restoration of the apse and chancel of St Edmunds Catholic Parish Church has been shortlisted by the National Churches Trust for The King of Prussia Gold Medal Award for innovative repair and conservation church architecture.
St Edmund’s Catholic Church is one of the oldest post-reformation parishes in East Anglia and the current church building dates from 1837. The conservation and restoration of the apse and chancel was the final stage in a three year project to prepare the church for the 250th anniversary of the first Mass celebrated in the parish. The work included a wide range of specialist decorative techniques and very fine detailing, including scagliola to the columns (hand painting in successive layers of colour to achieve a marbled finish), gilding to the egg and dart detailing of the column capitals, signwriting and gilded lettering, design and setting out of the stencilling and hand painting of the tri-colour cruciform decoration of the walls framing the apse and cleaning and conservation of the mural to the apse.
The beautifully completed work provides a spectacular backdrop to the church’s services, ordinances and celebrations.