This site is dedicated to Sir Walter Tapper, and the fabulous architecture that he left us.


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St Oswald, Deepdale

St Oswald church, Deepdale, Preston, was Tapper's last complete church before his death one year later.

Architect's impression of St Oswald's from the NE

This was one of the most difficult churches to research - and all of the usual 'remote' methods failed me, apart from three images that I was kindly sent by John Batten.

John supplied me with two interior images of the church, and one of a wedding, in front of the North chapel. These can all be found in the interior and miscellaneous image sections.

Of the history of the church, John went on to tell me that "My late father, Rev. T.C. Batten, was Vicar of St Oswalds from 1940 - 1959. He was the second incumbent of the parish, the first being Rev. Taplin. I think the church was built in 1934. I am not sure exactly when the church was demolished, but it was in the early 1990s, possibly 1993."

Of the building itself, John provided some detail of the church from memory. "The altar was backed by a huge 'tapestry' covering the full width of the chancel. The choir was arranged in a U shape with choristers stalls facing the central aisle and clergy stalls facing the altar and backing on to the screen. There were side entrances to the choir from the south aisle and from the Lady Chapel situated on the north side. The choir vestry and vicar's vestry were linked and accessed from the south aisle behind the pulpit.

The screen, lectern and pulpit were constructed and carved in solid oak. The screen supported a balcony across its full width and had the organ console set centrally on it. The organ was built by Comptons and the pipe room was to the north side of the balcony. Access to the organ loft was by a spiral staircase in the back right corner of the church.

At the west end of the church was a balcony, again accessed by a spiral stairway which led beyond the balcony to the belfry. The baptistry was set under the balcony with the font centrally placed. The baptistry seated approximately 40. The nave itself would seat maybe 200 but never did!

There was no stained glass in the building. All walls were off-white except for the stone reveals above the arches. The floor was stone flagged throughout."

After receiving this information from John, I then travelled to Preston with the express purpose of looking up St Oswalds at the Preston Record Office.

Sir Walter Tapper ~ Sir Walter J. Tapper ~ Gothic Revivalist Architect ~ St Erkenwald, Southend-on-Sea ~ Church of the Annunciation, Bryanston Street ~ Church of the Ascension, Malvern Link ~ Guildford Grammar School Chapel