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5 July 2019


John Piper’s Christ Church, Newgate Street’ 1941 is of course very reminiscent of The Stones of Bath which we used as the endpaper for Adam Fergusson’s The Sack of Bath. This painting belongs to the Museum of London: ‘Incendiary bombs gutted Christ Church during the Blitz. Impression of east end of church, built by Wren, as it looked from nave the morning after it had been gutted by incendiary bombs from a Nazi air attack.Because of the Pastoral Reorganisation Measure in 1949, a number of the City parishes amalgamated, including Christ Church. Christ Church merged with St Sepulchre-without-Newgate, where services are now held. Christ Church steeple, also seriously damaged, was re-erected in 1960 but the church was never fully restored. The tower was refurbished as office space and the nave area turned into a rose garden with public seating. This is one of a group of paintings John Piper produced in December 1940 and January 1941 featuring London’s bomb-damaged churches.’ Re the Guildhall exhibition: the Guardian has more images, as does the RIBA journal.


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