The Chapel On The Bridge - Outside
w/e 27 October
Just visible on the extreme left of this picture is the concrete
structure that now carries the majority of traffic across the
River Derwent in Derby. Far more pleasing to the eye though is
St Mary's Bridge built in the 1790s to the right. Sandwiched
between the two is the "Chapel of St Mary on the Bridge".
A bridge chapel has stood on this site since the fourteenth century.
This present building, served by the clergy of Derby Cathedral,
was restored in 1930 and, in parts, the brick and stonework now
resembles a patchwork quilt. Holes in the masonry on this north
wall were probably for wooden beams.
On the south side of the building is a small enclosed garden.
The adjacent house on the left was built in the 17th century
and displays the Dutch influence that became apparent during
the reign of William III.
It is thought that the sloping structure at the base of the east
wall was probably intended to allow the passage of flood water
and preventing damage to the building.
From this lower level by the wall of St Mary's Bridge, the arch
on which the chapel is supported, and serving the same purpose
as the sloping base, is clearly visible.
The south wall has a number of windows of mediaeval appearance
but these were put in during the 1930 restoration. Derby's bridge
chapel is one of only six that survive in this country.
on Page 2