Not far from where I live, in the neighbouring county of Bedfordshire, there is a very pretty church on a winding back-road, which is notorious for speeding fines, if little else.
Officially known as The former Holy Trinity Church, it is in the small hamlet of East Hyde.
It was designed by Benjamin Ferrey
in a Neo-Norman style and built between 1840 and 1841. It has two large Norman piers flanking the entrance, with open staircases with Norman colonettes turning left and right, culminating on the left in the single asymmetrically placed turret. It is a Grade II Listed Building
. It was declared closed for public worship by the Diocese of St Albans in 2008, but is currently in use as a Greek Orthodox Church dedicated to St Charalambos.
Just north of the church, through the graveyard, is an incredibly impressive mausoleum
which is a listed building in its own right. It is the tomb of the family of Julius Wernher
whose country pile, Luton Hoo (now a Hotel) is a mile or two up the road. German-born, at the time of his death in 1912 he was one of the richest men in the United Kingdom with a fortune of £12 million ~ much of it made from diamond mines, and much of it spent during his lifetime, on art.
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It is often worth stopping at small churches such as this one. They can be little gems. On a wet, muddy and windy day in November, it was well worth a visit.
Annie Bee x
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