John Francis Bentley

BookJohn Francis Bentley

John Francis Bentley

Architect of Westminster Cathedral

Victorian Architects

2020

May 31st, 2020

£30.00

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This is the first biography of John Francis Bentley (1839-1902), best known as architect of Westminster Cathedral, since his daughter Winefride de l’Hôpital’s Westminster Cathedral and its Architect (1919). Bentley was born in Doncaster, Yorkshire, and went to London to work in the office of Henry Clutton, a distinguished High Victorian architect who became a Roman Catholic in 1856. Bentley also converted, and, after setting up his own practice in 1860, came to be widely recognised as the best Catholic architect of his time. He built comparatively few complete churches, but did extensive work in adding to and furnishing other architects’ churches. He had remarkable skill in the design of woodwork, metalwork, stained glass, and organ cases, all of which are covered in the book. His finest parish church is Holy Rood, Watford, but the climax of his career was the commission in 1894 to design Westminster Cathedral, which was almost complete when he died in 1902.

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Author Information

Peter Howell is Honorary Research Fellow at Royal Holloway, University of London.