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© Mr A. B. Cooke

IoE Number: 411110
Photographer: Mr A. B. Cooke
Date Photographed: 22 July 2003
Date listed: 18 May 1972
Date of last amendment: 18 May 1972
Grade II

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FISHBOURNE PARK ROAD, 1. 1577 BINSTEAD SZ 59 SE 7/100 Quarr Abbey II* 2. 1908 to 1912. Dom Paul Bellot architect. Monastic buildings including cloister with church situated to South. Built entirely of Belgian brick. One of the most successful early C20 church buildings, though more related to the continent than to England, Strong affinities with Catalan and Moorish brickwork with references to Gaudi's early work at the Casa Vicene and his Colegio de Santa Teresa in Barcelona. The plans and elevations are original in their spatial effect. The church consists of a short low nave without aisles, followed by a much taller monk's choir and then the massive towered sanctuary. As with the entrance to the Abbey, the low West front has a stepped gable, flanked by short square turrets, and a pointed arched entrance which is repeated internally across the nave and with far greater height across the choir. Exter- nally the beginning of the choir is strikingly masked by a high bare brick wall, flanked by a short square North tower and a far more prominent South tower with a circular bell stage and conical roof. A squatter but massive square East tower encloses the sanctuary which has low chapels South and North again with stepped gables. The tower has square corner turrets repeating on a large scale those flanking the West front. The rib vaulting of the tower space consists of diagonal ribs crossed in turn by four ribs connecting the centres of the four sides, a bold conception quite original but which again refers to Northern Spain and to the mosque at Cordoba. The vault rests on four large pointed arches and on each side, behind them, appear groups of tall slender windows. The spendrels and ribs have a series of open narrow arches cut into them, a feature repeated in the choir. This has bare side walls and very narrow transverse arched side passages, with a high open gallery above, tall narrow lights and again transverse arches. The transverse arch together with the plain pointed arch are a recurring motife in the cloister, chapter house and refectory, frequently with the inserted arches found in the choir and tower. All decoration is of brick, sometimes polychromed and often purpose-out to form angular tracery, grids, corbels and stepped friezes, whether internally or externally, throughout the monastic buildings.

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