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HHER Number:18575
Type of record:Building


1883 Anglican church built as a chapel for the hamlet of Hatfield Hyde and known as Hyde Chapel until it became a new parish church in 1928

Grid Reference:TL 245 112
Map Sheet:TL21SW
Parish:Welwyn Hatfield (Non Civil Parish), Welwyn Hatfield, Hertfordshire
Map:Show location on Streetmap

Monument Types

  • ANGLICAN CHURCH (1883, Post Medieval - 1501 AD to 1900 AD)
  • CHAPEL OF EASE (1883, Post Medieval - 1501 AD to 1900 AD)

Full description

The church of St Mary Magdalene opened in 1883 as a chapel of ease within the parish of Hatfield for the hamlet of Hatfield Hyde, and replaced a smaller chapel [16281] 250m to the NE in Homestead Lane. The new church was built by Lord Salisbury and was constructed in 1882 to designs by his nephew, Eustace Balfour. Until it was consecrated as the parish church of Hatfield Hyde in 1928 it was called the Hyde Chapel, and stood on the south side of Hyde Farm [16280]. The reredos was made from wood from the old chapel's desk and pulpit, and other gifts came from the Kendall family of Hyde Farm. The altar rails and candelabra were bought secondhand, but in the 1930s were found to be original fittings from St Etheldreda's, Hatfield [2368]; they were replaced by duplicates and the originals returned. Until the new parish was instituted in 1928 (during the development of the Garden City) the Hyde Chapel was not licensed for marriages, which still took place at St Etheldreda's nearly 3km to the SW. Funerals also took place at St Etheldreda's until 1915 when a small extension to the chapel plot was bought as a graveyard <1>. This was superseded later by the municipal cemetery on the other side of the road.
The 1880 OS map <2> shows only farmland here, immediately on the south side of Hyde Farm. The 1898 map <3> shows the new chapel, a rectangular building set well back from the road, with a porch projecting from the north-west end and a path approaching it. Trees had been planted within the plot.
Construction of the south extension, which projects forward, began in 1957 <1>.

<1> <www.st-mary-magdalene.org.uk>, (Accessed 29 Jan 2013) (Digital archive). SHT7689.

<2> OS 25 inch map, 1st edition, 1880 (Cartographic material). SHT8116.

<3> OS 25 inch map, 2nd edition (1897-1901), 1898 (Cartographic material). SHT8113.

Sources and further reading

<1>Digital archive: <www.st-mary-magdalene.org.uk>. Website. (Accessed 29 Jan 2013).
<2>Cartographic material: OS 25 inch map, 1st edition. 1880.
<3>Cartographic material: OS 25 inch map, 2nd edition (1897-1901). 1898.