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A liberal & inclusive church, seeking God through beauty in our worship, honesty in our faith & doubt, & service in our community
Christ Church was founded at the end of the 18th century in the fashionable, prosperous city of Bath, a city very attractive to the wealthy visitors who took the waters and engaged in a variety of pleasurable activities. The city’s churches prospered by charging pew rents, which meant, however, that the poorer people could not afford to attend church. To remedy this, a group of socially inclined men opened a voluntary subscription fund to build a new church in which the ground floor should provide seating free of charge for any who wished to attend services, while the gallery seats would be let at a price sufficient to pay clergy and other staff. Early supporters included the Archbishop of Canterbury, the great evangelical and campaigner against slavery William Wilberforce, and Martin Stafford Smith, godfather of John Keble, a founder of the Oxford Movement. The physical structure and appearance of the fine Georgian building remain today, but not the social engineering!

When it was completed in 1798, Christ Church was a typical late 18th century “preaching house”, with a gallery, a central pulpit and a small free-standing altar. About 70 years later, after the influence of the Oxford Movement and in a typical act of Victorian exuberance, the house next to the east end of the church was bought and demolished to make way for a large apse, in a much more Catholic style. This eclectic mix of Catholic and Reformed remains in the make-up of the congregation to this day. Christ Church today is defined as a proprietary chapel, sometimes known with slight amusement as a “Peculiar in Ordinary”, owned by a charitable Trust. It lies geographically within the Parish of St Swithin’s, Walcot, but has no organisational link to that church beyond St Swithin’s having a representative on the Trustees.

The historical oddity of Christ Church having no geographical area of responsibility is becoming less strange as people commonly travel well outside of their parishes, particularly in cities, to attend churches which they feel meet their spiritual needs. In recent times Christ Church has sought to play a full role in the life of the Deanery and Diocese, donating a sum to the Diocesan Common Fund equivalent to a parish share and taking up places on Deanery Synod. We have strong links with our neighbours at St Stephen’s, Lansdown, and St Mary’s, Charlcombe, through the formation of a Local Ministry Group.
 
You can read more in Christ Church Bath - A Brief History and Guide (updated August 2019) or on Wikipedia.
 

Upcoming Services

Eucharist (streamed online)
Sun 5 Apr at 10:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Thu 9 Apr at 11:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Sun 12 Apr at 10:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Thu 16 Apr at 11:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Sun 19 Apr at 10:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Thu 23 Apr at 11:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Sun 26 Apr at 10:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Thu 30 Apr at 11:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Sun 3 May at 10:00am
Eucharist (streamed online)
Thu 7 May at 11:00am

Latest Events

CANX The Cedar Tree Community Cafe
Fri 3 Apr 11:00am-1:30pm
CANX Toppings - Sophie Walker
Tue 7 Apr 8:00pm-9:30pm
CANX The Cedar Tree Community Cafe
Fri 10 Apr 11:00am-1:30pm
CANX The Cedar Tree Community Cafe
Fri 17 Apr 11:00am-1:30pm
CANX The Cedar Tree Community Cafe
Fri 24 Apr 11:00am-1:30pm