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Published titles > Architecture > Downside Abbey
Downside Abbey cover image
UK £45.00
US $75.00
CAN $82.50
224 pages
240 illustrations, 205 in colour
29 x 29 cm (11.5 x 11.5 in)
ISBN: 978-1-8589-4542-2
Downside Abbey
An Architectural History

Edited by Dom Aidan Bellenger

Described by Sir Nikolaus Pevsner as ‘the most splendid demonstration of the renaissance of Roman Catholicism in England’, the Neo-Gothic church at Downside Abbey, Somerset, was built between the 1880s and the 1930s under the direction of some of the country’s most renowned ecclesiastical architects. This elegant new book reviews the history and construction of this magnificent building, designed to rival the scale of England’s great medieval Gothic cathedrals. Contributions by distinguished architectural historians explore, among other subjects, Thomas Garner’s majestic choir, Sir Giles Gilbert Scott’s soaring nave and the exquisitely redesigned Lady chapel of Sir Ninian Comper. Generously illustrated throughout with drawings, plans, archival photography and dramatic new images by Paul Barker, one of the UK’s pre-eminent architectural photographers, Downside Abbey is an absorbing account of a remarkable place of worship.


A unique and beautiful book celebrating the architecture of this magnificent English abbey church
Features specially commissioned images by acclaimed architectural photographer Paul Barker
Includes contributions from such leading architectural historians as Gavin Stamp and Alan Powers
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Author Profiles

Paul Barker is one of the UK's most respected architectural photographers. He contributes regularly to such magazines as Country Life, Homes & Gardens and World of Interiors.

Dom Aidan Bellenger is Abbot of Downside Abbey, Somerset, and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and the Society of Antiquaries. He has lectured on medieval history at several British universities and is the author of numerous historical studies.

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[Paul Barker's photographs] reveal him as a master of glancing light, those of the choir and nave ranking with the cathedral images of Frederick Evans

The Times

Offers new insights on Catholic and non-Catholic artists and architects … As a history, it achieves three narratives, as it tells the story of Downside, of Catholic taste and beliefs in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and of British architecture's most important moments

The Tablet

Beautiful, scholarly and readable

The Victorian
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