TWO listed church buildings — Christ Church (see photo), Cheylesmore, in south Coventry, and Calvary Charismatic Baptist Church, Tower Hamlets, in east London — have been upgraded from Grade II to Grade II* to mark the 70th anniversary of the Festival of Britain this summer.
Only 5.8 per cent of listed buildings are Grade II*, deemed to be of more than special interest. Two other churches — St John’s, Waterloo, and St Mary and St Joseph, in Tower Hamlets — are among seven sites, including the Royal Festival Hall, whose list entries have been updated by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to recognise officially their connections with the Festival.
The Festival of Britain ran from May to September 1951, attracted eight million visitors, and promoted British design, science, technology, architecture, industry, and the arts. Historic England’s chief executive, Duncan Wilson, said: “It raised the spirits of the British people following the austerity of World War II, and showcased Britain’s innovation to the rest of the world.
“The Festival had a major influence on design and architecture, and its legacy can still be seen today in our buildings and public artworks. We are delighted to be able to celebrate the Festival as it reaches its 70th anniversary, and we hope that people will continue to appreciate its legacy for years to come.”