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Gorton Monastery

Church and Friary of St Francis
Basic information
Location Gorton,
Geographic coordinates SJ876968
Geographic coordinates

53°28′06″N 2°11′15″W / 53.468333°N 2.1875°W / 53.468333; -2.1875Coordinates: 53°28′06″N 2°11′15″W / 53.468333°N 2.1875°W / 53.468333; -2.1875{{#coordinates:53.468333|-2.1875|type:landmark|||||| |primary |name=

Affiliation Roman Catholic (Franciscan)
Ecclesiastical or organizational status Friary
Status Secular events venue
Architectural description
Architectural style High Victorian Gothic architecture
Completed 1872

The Church and Friary of St Francis, known locally as Gorton Monastery, is a 19th-century former Franciscan friary in Gorton, Manchester, England. The Franciscans arrived in Gorton in December 1861 and built their friary between 1863 and 1867. Most of the building work was done by the friars themselves, with a brother acting as clerk of works.[1] The foundation stone for the church was laid in 1866 and completed in 1872; it closed for worship in 1989.[2] It is believed to be one of the finest examples of High Victorian Gothic architecture in the world.[2] It was designed by Edward Welby Pugin (1834–1875), whose father, A.W.N. Pugin, promoted the revival of Gothic as the style of architecture which was the ideal expression of Roman Catholic faith and worship in church buildings.[3]

Modern developments

In 1997, Gorton Monastery was placed on the World Monuments Fund Watch List of 100 Most Endangered Sites in the World alongside Pompeii, the Taj Mahal and the Valley of the Kings.[4]

The church and associated friary buildings underwent a £6 million restoration programme supported by funds from the Heritage Lottery Fund, English Heritage and European Regional Development Fund. [5] The project was completed in June 2007 when the restored buildings opened as a venue for conferences, business meetings and community events.[6] The building is also used for a range of concerts.

See also


  1. ^ C Hartwell, M.Hyde and N. Pevsner, The Buildings of England. Lancashire: Manchester and the South East, London, Yale University Press, 2004, p.372.
  2. ^ a b The History of Gorton Monastery Retrieved 2007-12-14
  3. ^ Rosemary Hill. God's Architect: Pugin and the Building of Romantic Britain. Allen Lane, 2007. ISBN 978-0-7139-9499-5.
  4. ^ Retrieved 2007-12-14
  5. ^ "Before and after: historic buildings restored and transformed". Daily Telegraph. 
  6. ^ North West Development Agency:Gorton Monastery's £6 million restoration complete Retrieved 2007-12-14

External links