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Lighten my darkness

How St Dionis Church, Parsons Green, leapt into the 21st century. 

Shining light. The St Dionis chancel showing the new parquet flooring in the foreground.

Over the hundred or so years the Puginesque St Dionis Church on Parsons Green had become a somewhat gloomy place mainly due to poor lighting and a 135-year old floor that was not only showing its age but its uneven surface becoming a safety hazard. Its redeeming features include ten Portland stone pillars supporting elegant arches that sweep the eye up to the high, timbered ceiling. The font and the pulpit were saved from a City of London church of the same name that was demolished in 1878.

 
Shining example. The light oak parquetry reflects the light whilst adding emphasis to the elegance of the pillars.

Showcase

Architects Carden and Godfrey were appointed to transport the building into the 21st century. The entrance hall becomes a welcoming reception; above, is an office area all glass, Oak and soft carpeting. The south west corner of the Nave has is a cafe with a minstrel gallery above for special events. And to illuminate the voluminous interior of the church, there is a state-of-the art audio/visual/lighting system to command the intensity of the light and sound in every corner.

A major part of the St Dionis’ resurrection is the floor: 450 square metres of natural Oak supplied by the Natural Wood Flooring Company in Wandsworth and fitted by HS Wood Flooring.

The transformation is stunning and it is no wonder that the Royal Institute of British Architects chose to showcase it in the 2021 London Awards.

A recent video records the Revd Tim Stilwell, Vicar of St Dionis, and Tim Hobern of HS Wood Flooring the the features of the floor and what it means to the parishioners.

This video also highlights how the new floor contrasts with the old fabric of the church and highlights the beauty of the architecture.

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