Brooks, James

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Brooks, James (1825–1901). One of England's most distinguished Gothic Revival church architects. Born in Berks., he set up his own practice in 1851. He favoured First Pointed Burgundian Gothic of C13, and worked mostly in London, often using brick. Some of his churches follow the ideal of urban Minsters established by Butterfield at All Saints', Margaret Street, and include the powerful St Chad (begun 1867) and St Columba, Kingsland Road (1865–74), both in Haggerston: the latter is on a large scale, and light is admitted to the impressive interior through a clerestorey of plate-traceried windows and lancets at the east and west. Later churches include The Ascension, Lavender Hill (1874), and The Transfiguration, Lewisham (1880s). All Hallows', Gospel Oak (begun 1891), was intended to have stone vaulting, but the 1914–18 war prevented this; at St John the Baptist, Holland Road, Kensington (1872–1911), however, stone vaulting was erected throughout the church, creating a grand and solemn effect. He was in partnership with his son, James Martin Brooks (1852–1903).

Bibliography

B. Clarke (1966, 1969);
J. Curl (2002b);
D&M (1985);
Eastlake (1970)

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