The Holy Trinity Church

The Holy Trinity Church that later became The Holy Trinity Parish Hall.

holy trinity church
Artists impression c.1839

Eleanor Frewen Turner of Cold Overton Hall hired Sydney Smirke of London (brother and former pupil of Sir Robert Smirke who designed the British Museum) as the Architect for The Holy Trinity Church.

1837 The building was built at the Junction of Coventry Road and Trinity Lane in Hinckley, Leicestershire.

The building looked theatre-like, a gallery, entered by outside stairs, filled three side of the interior, there was a three decker pulpit.

1839 The Holy Trinity Church was consecrated on 29th June 1839 as a 'chapel of ease' to St. Marys Church. During the same year a barrel organ was given by the Dean and Chapter of Westminster, this was later to be replaced by a single manual organ.

1841 A bell turret was added to the West end that included a bell weighing 3cwt, the bell was paid for by public subscription.

1842 A font was added and also the building had gas lighting installed.

1843 A new parish of Holy Trinity was created with the Trinity Chapel as the parish Church.

1868 Renovation work was started, the front of the building was re-stuccoed, woodwork was painted and varnished, gas standards was also installed. The cost for the renovation came to £250.

1870 On 16th Feburary 1870 a bill from the Architects and Surveyors 'Dain and Smith' to Thomas Frewen for work done, which was the renovation work that was started during 1868 and also adjoining land.

1880 A project to modernise and beautify the building both inside and out was launched.

holy trinity church parish hall
Interior looking east, Harvest-tide 1904

1883 An appeal was being made for the restoration of the building, an article in the Hinckley Parish Magazine said 'that after the contemplated alterations had been carried out it would present a more ecclesiastical appearance. It has been stated and we believe there is some foundation for the statement, that the architect when engaged upon the plan for the building of this Church had also in hand the plans for a theatre in some other town, and that these plans were forwarded to Hinckley by mistake. It was not until too late that the mistake was discovered. The exterior of the Church was quite as unusual in it architectural details as the interior. There was no attempt at orientation, the East end being West by North-west. Access to the gallery was given by an outside flight of steps. The plain square stone facade was pierced by three semi-circular windows'.

During July 1883 a sale of work was held in the Town Hall, the proceeds were to be for a fund for altering and repairing the building.

William Bassett Smith of London, who a few years earlier carried out a very extensive restoration of St.Marys Church and St.Marys Vicarage was to commissioned to carry out the work. The building contractor was Thomas Smith of Chilvers Coton, Nuneaton. The stone used was Attleborough Stone, which has rather unsatisfactory wearing qualities. Other alterations were the three large windows at the West end of the building were taken out and refixed in the side walls. A larger window of a more ornamental character was inserted at the East end of the building. Large tablets of slate containing 'the Belief', the Lord's Prayer and the Ten Commandments were substituted for the remaining window spaces, these were later removed in installed in to the New Church.

holy trinity parish hall
The Holy Trinity Parish Hall, Trinity Lane.

The pulpit and reading desk removed and altered, the side portions of the gallery were taken down, and a new sedilia and reading desk provided. At the west end of the building the floor was raised, a portion of it laid with encaustic tiles and enclosed with Communion Rails. The old fashioned benches were removed and replaced with more comfortable ones of an improved appearance. The front of the building also underwent some alteration by the removal of the stone steps and palisading leading up to the gallery and entrance porches constructed on ground level.

2nd August 1883 The Church was re-opened to the public.

11th August 1883 The Hinckley Times had an article that read 'The church by the alteration is much improved by the appearance, especially in the interior. The only alteration at the front is the taking down of the flight of stone steps leading to the central door, which has been removed, and a window has been inserted. The two side wings of the gallery have been taken down, the seats have been altered from the old-fashioned benches, and replaced with more comfortable ones of an improved appearance. The old unsightly pulpit and reading desk have been removed, the communion table, which formerly stood in front of the pulpit and desk, has now been put back to the wall, and new communion rails have been put down, the floor being laid with encaustic tiles'.

1886 A new organ with two manuals and a pedal organ bought for the Church at a cost of £180.

1908 During the month of December the Bishop of Peterborough thought the building was unsuitable for its purpose, he thought the building did not look cheerful or commodious and having any architectural merits.

Video Transformation of The Holy Trinity Church

During the same year in a fund raising notice for the replacement of the building a local paper wrote 'the present church, by reason of its unpretentious dimensions and structure, is unknown even to a great many Hinckley people. It was built in the year 1837, a time when Church Architecture was almost at its very worst, with the result that an utterly impossible building was erected'.

Although the congregation of the 'Old Church of Holy Trinity' were extremely happy with the building, it never failed to gain any positive comments from other people. Its interior looked more like a Non-conformist Chapel than a Church. A gallery occupied three sides of the wall space and a three-decker pulpit came up to the same height.

1910 The Church was used for the last time on 6th February 1910 for worship, the building then became the Parish Hall.

1913 Plans were proposed for two classrooms and lavatories to Holy Trinity Parish Hall by Alexander R. Ellis of 24 Bennetts Hill, Birmingham. During the same year the Bell turret was pronounced dangerous and was dismantled.

1973 The Holy Trinity Parish Hall was demolished after being a Chapel-of-ease for four years, a Parish Church for sixty-seven years and finally a Parish Hall for sixty-three years.

demolition holy trinity parish hall demolition holy trinity parish hall
Demolition during 1973