The New Church of England Parishes
Parish of Barton
St Martins Church, and former Mission churches at Barton & Hele
St Augustines was part of I. K. Brunel's design for a housing estate for his estate workers and financed by his work for the Great Exhibition. A crescent of 10 houses was planned but only four were built. The chapel is believed to have been part of Brunel's original design but was built after his death, probably by his wife and sons in about 1874/5. The land and building were conveyed to Vicar & Churchwardens of St Marychurch for use as a school. The school having closed many years before, the last church service took place here on 17 June 1928, the chapel was then used as a church hall, the function of the church having been taken over by the temporary church of St Martins.
The building still stands, although it has been converted into two houses, and the following blue plaque has been affixed by the Torbay Civic Society.
Mission Church of the Good Shepherd
Standing in Hele Road
I know very little about this Mission church except for the fact that the foundation stone was laid on 13th January 1883 by a Miss Harding, and it was used as a school & chapel. The education authority vacated in 1927 and the last church service was held on 17th June 1928 (same day as St Augustines). It the became a church hall for St Augustines. Today, it has lost its bell turrett, but still stands and is used as a Boxing club.
St Martins Temporary Church
In early 1926 it was deemed necessary to have a new church to serve the needs of the evergrowing housing estates of the Barton & Hele Village areas of Torquay. Over £300 was raised to purchase the land and 1½ acres of land was aquired for the erection, at a future date, of a temporary church (which could later be used as a church hall) a parsonage house and a permanent church. A further £1000 was raised so that the temporary building could go ahead and on Friday 22 June 1928 this was ready and on this date the Lord Bishop of Plymouth dedicated it, and this was witnessed by over 700 people. A parsonage house was built in 1930. On 6th July 1938 the first sod of the site of the new church was cut, and on 15th february 1939 the foundation stone was laid, but when war broke out later that same year the building was left unfinished, the unfinished building was consecrated on 20th July 1940. For a further 21 years the building remained unfinished. On 15th August 1960, by an order in council, St Martins became a parish and the new church the parish church. In 1962 the main building was completed and in 1971 a new church hall was dedicated and the temporary building demolished to make the car park. The vicarage was demolished a few years ago in order for the access road to the newly opened up Barton new town to be constructed.
St Martins Church today- still very active
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