It is believed that the first house built on Copse Hill was in the 1750s. The area really took off with the coming of the railway in 1838, and within a few years Wimbledon changed form a village to a town. By the mid-1850’s it was clear that there was a need for a church in the Copse Hill area. In 1857 an appeal was launched to provide funds to build a church, or more correctly a chapel-of-ease, and within a short time £6,000 was raised. The building contract for the church amounted to £3,425.
Prior to 1925, Copse Hill was a country lane, but in that year the road was widened and for the first time a footpath added on the north side in preparation for the opening of the A3 two years later.
The church started out as a chapel-of-ease. By 1872 the possibility of parochial status was discussed but nothing changed until the church’s Centenary Year in 1959 when a fresh application was made. The request was considered by the Privy Council and this time the application was allowed. On 18th September 1961 a service was held for the induction of Rev. Uthwatt as the first vicar of the new parish of Christ Church, West Wimbledon.
Christ Church, West Wimbledon around 1910s
Christ Church, West Wimbledon 2023
How the footprint has changed 1859-1998
On Monday 15th August 1859 a new church in ‘grounds of half an acre or thereabouts’ was dedicated by the Bishop of London, the Rt. Revd. Archibald Tait.
The church was built with Kentish ragstone, with buttresses and some other parts of Bath Stone. The architect was Samuel S. Teulon, who designed a number of churches in the London area. However, it should be remembered that the original church was smaller than we see today. It did not have a south transept, the main entrance was on the north side the nave was one bay shorter.
The present bells of the church were rung for the first time on All Saints Day 1899. They are at the top of a narrow flight of 50 steps, but the six bells are fixed in position and cannot be pealed. This is because of the position of the tower. The bells are rung with clapper lines operated by a single ringer. It is said if the bells were hung in the normal position and then rung they would pull the tower down!
Major changes to the church since 1859 have included (i) the adding of a south transept, designed by Teulon, in 1860, (ii) the north door ceased to be used as the main entrance (maybe because of the chilly winds that came in from the fields opposite) and (iii) in 1881 it was decided to lengthen the nave. This entailed taking down the west wall, extending the nave by one bay, and rebuilding the west wall to incorporate a new porch.
One of the best features are the arcading and the hammer beam roof. The arcading arches are in the Decorated Style and the columns are unusual. The design on each column is completely distinct.
In 1977 a former parishioner, Miss Truman, left the church £70,000 in her will, and as a result a committee was set up to decide how the money should be spent and eventually a number of improvements were made including a junk/storage room turned into what we see today – a pleasant Truman Room; the organ pipes were moved from above the organ to above the Truman Room; the church was completely redecorated; the stone work was repointed.
The Truman Room contains several stained-glass windows, the oldest of which facing the Church Hall was designed and erected in 1866. The East Window was the gift of Mr and Mrs Bishop in memory of their son Eric who died in 1907 at the age of fourteen. The window illustrates the Resurrection, and the kneeling boy in the lower left-hand corner is a representation of the boy who died.
Other gifts by past parishioners include the pulpit given in 1877 and the brass lectern in 1885. The organ dates from 1954, although all the pipes from the old organ were revoiced and incorporated in the new one, which was dedicated at Evensong on 16 May 1954 by the Bishop of Southwark.
In 1931 the land next to the church came on the market, the church bought it, and the hall was officially opened in September 1936 and in 1939 a kitchen was added. In November 1940 the hall was offered to the Church Army as a canteen and club for service personnel in the area until the summer of 1945.
In 2019, after many years of fundraising, the hall was completely refurbished. It is light and airy, with a well-kitted out kitchen, a sound system, a stage, a sprung floor and disabled loos. If you are interested in hiring it, find out how, below
Christ Church hall is a separate building next to the Church and it was fully refurbished in 2019. The sprung wooden floor makes it an ideal venue for ballet and dance classes as well as yoga and pilates. With the modernised kitchen it is also brilliant for Children’s parties. For enquiries about hiring the hall please contact: email@example.com
Christ Church Hall, 2a Cottenham Park Road, London, SW20 0RZ (just down from the corner of Copse Hill and Cottenham Park Road)
• Seats 120 (100 at table)
• Hall dimensions: approx 50ft x 30 ft / 15m x 9m excluding stage area
• Disabled access & toilets
• On-site parking for 6 cars
•New heating and air-cooling system
• Fully equipped kitchen including automatic water boiler
The 12 th Wimbledon Brownies meet on Wednesdays at the Scout Hut on the corner of Cottenham Park Road and Oakwood Road. We welcome all girls aged 7-10 from all schools and all denominations but those who live locally and those who attend Christ Church are particularly welcome. Contact is Elisabeth Bingham firstname.lastname@example.org
The 12th Wimbledon Guides meet on Tuesday evenings, at the Scout Hut on the corner of Cottenham Park Road and Oakwood Road. We welcome all girls aged 10-14 from all schools and all denominations regardless of whether or not they have been Brownies. Please contact us. Contact Nicolette Ewers email@example.com
Raynes Park Bereavement was set up by Christ Church as part of its outreach programme in 2014. There are 12 volunteers who meet with people who have been bereaved on a one-to- one basis. The service receives most of its referrals (about 60 per year) from local GP surgeries. If you (or anyone you know who lives in the area) would like to make use of our service, please call 07914 263420 or email
We are delighted to announce that The Reverend Lotwina Farodoye will be coming to Christ Church at the end of September 2023 as the new Vicar. Meanwhile please email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Parochial Church Council (PCC) 2023-2024
Elected to serve until May 2024
Elected to serve until May 2025
John Davey (Hon Treasurer)
Flis Banks (ex-officio Reader)
Elected to serve until May 2026
Judy Luddington (Hon Secretary)
Merton Deanery Synod Members 2020-2024
(Ex officio on PCC)
*Eligible to stand for a further 3-year term
Our stall is open every Sunday run by members of the congregation.
Fair Trade is business with a commitment to justice for the world’s poor. Fair Trade is based on long-term partnerships with producers in the global south, guaranteeing suppliers a fair price for their products so that they can earn enough to support their families and communities.
Traidcraft run programmes in developing countries, supporting poor and vulnerable people to get a better deal from trade. They often focus on small, marginalised groups, creating long term partnerships and they also campaign to transform the way trade works.
For a wider range of products there is a Traidcraft catalogue and you can also order online at www.traidcraftshop.co.uk
We have special collections throughout the year and there are specific charities that we donate to.
Currently we are supporting:
1. South London Refugee Association https://www.slr-a.org.uk
2. Church Mission Society https://churchmissionsociety.org
3. Christian Aid https://www.christianaid.org.uk
4. A Rocha Kenya https://www.arocha.or.ke
5. Children’s Society, https://www.childrenssociety.org.uk
6. Faith in Action https://www.faithinaction.co.uk
7. Christian CARE Association https://www.christiancaremerton.org.uk
We also collect for emergency appeals for example we recently held a collection for Ukraine.
We are here to help you if you would like to hold a funeral service in church for your loved one. It is not necessary for the deceased or their family to have been church goers. We can also conduct a full funeral service at a crematorium for those who live in the parish of Christ Church. It is usual for the funeral director to make direct contact with us but please contact the Parish Office
if you have any queries.
We are always pleased to discuss marriage with those who live in the parish of Christ Church or who can establish a Qualifying Connection with Christ Church. It may also be possible to be married at Christ Church where either or both parties have been divorced. Please contact the Parish Office at email@example.com to arrange a time to discuss marriage.
We are willing to consider preparing children to receive Holy Communion from about the age of 7-8 and subsequently we encourage young people to wait until they are at least 11-years-old before making the ‘adult’ step into church life at confirmation. Confirmation groups also run each year for adults who would like to make a commitment to church
life. Please contact the Parish Office firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss.
Baptisms are conducted on Sunday mornings either during the 10am service on the first Sunday of the month or at 12 noon on a convenient Sunday. We are always pleased to discuss baptism for those who live in the parish of Christ Church. Visit www.achurchnearyou.com to see if you live in the parish. Please contact the Parish Office at email@example.com for more details.
The cost of running the church and paying for the Vicar is over £2,700 each week – rising with inflation every day. The stark fact is that we are not even covering our day-to-day running costs, let alone paying for repairs and maintenance required to the church and hall.
Christ Church gets no state funding. Maintaining our church for today and securing it for the future requires continued expense. Our prayer is that our Church may continue to flourish. It can do so – but only with your help.
If you would like to donate to Christ Church please contact the Parish Office at
or download, print and return the Giving Form below.