Sandham Memorial Chapel and Garden

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HCC Site ID. 1980 Parish: Burghclere

Designations: Chapel LB I Area: 1 ha
Access: Timed booking to Chapel-check opening times Ownership: National Trust

Historic development

In 1924 Mr and Mrs J L Behrend decided to build a chapel on land in Burghclere which they had purchased in 1923 from Carnarvon estate . Their intention was to facilitate a space for their friend Stanley Spencer in which to display a series of huge canvases depicting aspects of the Macedonian campaign. The chapel, designed by Lionel Pearson LRIBA, was later dedicated to the memory of Mrs Behrend’s brother who had died in 1919 from an illness contracted in Macedonia . The chapel and its setting is a unique memorial to all those ‘forgotten dead’ and whose names were not recorded on official war memorials. It is the only site in the UK which marks the Macedonian campaign . In 1947 the chapel and its garden was given to the National Trust. In 2014 a new ‘memorial garden’ designed by Daniel Lobb was opened behind the chapel.

Current description

Brick path and well

Brick path and well

The landscape design falls into two areas: the south lawns and meadow frame the chapel and its adjoining almshouses, the rear gardens were cultivated as cottage/kitchen gardens by the occupants of the almshouses. A vista south from the chapel steps towards Watership Down is an important feature. The gate, well, and brick path provide a formal approach to the important chapel while the natural wild-flower meadow setting acts as a foil to the emotional intensity aroused by the images within the chapel. The setting is an important example of a late Arts & Crafts approach which has remained largely unaltered since in conception; it provides two contrasting garden areas- ornamental at the public south side, and utilitarian gardens to the
rear. Following a recent HLF grant, the rear garden has been redesigned to provide a further space for quiet reflection within an updated productive garden space. All the recent work has been accomplished by volunteers .
HGT Research: April 2015


Sandham Memorial Chapel Conservation Statement for National Trust; Dr Sarah Rutherford, October 2013
Directory of British Architects 1834-1913, Vol. 2 (L-Z) RIBA
Landscape Summary: Sandham Memorial Chapel Conservation Statement for National Trust; Dr Sarah Rutherford, October 2013
National Trust Press Office:

Click here for link to National Trust website for opening times

Our address

Burghclere, Timed bookings for Chapel - check opening times Click for Disclaimer & copyright
51.3443603292715, -1.3363677263259888

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