Our Lady Help of Christians Roof Repairs

Richard Gilbert Scott's dramatic roof gets its green back

Client
Our Lady Help of Christians
Location
Kitts Green, Birmingham
RIBA Work Stage
4-6
Role
  • Project Lead
  • Architect
  • Principal Designer
  • Contract Administrator
We were delighted to get involved with the roof restoration works for this beautiful Grade II* Listed Church, designed by Richard Gilbert Scott of Giles Scott and built in 1967.

The copper roof had been previously resurfaced in 2000 but has reached the end of its design life. We conducted extensive research on the original roofing and detailing, including a visit to the RIBA Archives at the V&A, to determine the most appropriate approach to the restorations. We specified a new covering that will achieve a longer design life to better protect the fabric of the building.

 

You can find more information on the church’s architectural history at the Twentieth Century Society.

Our Lady Help of Christians is an incredible amalgamation of art, architecture and engineering. Even now, 50 years on, it is hard to fathom how the dramatic in-situ concrete forms were created; something that would be a challenge now, even with the significant advances in design and construction technologies. Richard Gilbert Scott’s attention to detail is clear to see in every part of the building, from ironmongery and seating to the different textures of concrete used on separate part of the concrete frame. Everything works together to form an awe-inspiring, sacred, space. The building came at a time when the changes brought about by Vatican II radically altered the form and liturgy of catholic churches. Richard Gilbert Scott’s vision, which he stuck to despite concerns from clergy, created a building that embodies all of the benefits of these changes, and has proven to be an incredibly successful form for worship.

James PhillipsDirector & Project Architect