|HCC Site ID:||1758||Parish:|
|Designations:||Area:||c 2 ha|
|Access:||Public Access||Ownership:||Gosport Borough Council|
Location and site
Trinity Green surrounds Holy Trinity Church which is south of Gosport High Street. Since 2000 it has been linked to the new Trinity Green Time Space. An eastern gateway from the Time Space opens on to the esplanade path that follows the shoreline to the Ferry terminal and Falkland Gardens to the north. Incorporated in the esplanade path is a chain motif that includes the names of local people who paid for their names to be included. Along the path there are fine views to Portsmouth harbour and its waterfront. To the west from the Green, a pathway across the Haslar Road, leads through a small estate to a mound with a mosaic overlooking Walpole Park. Trinity Green and Trinity Green Time Space are sited on low-lying land.
In 1695 Bishop Peter Mews of Winchester, who was Lord of the Manor, granted to the people of Gosport, a piece of waste land, 350ft by 180 ft on which to build a chapel, surrounded by a burial ground. He also provided 14 stout oak trees for the building. The cost to build the chapel came from private subscriptions in Gosport. The trees surrounding the churchyard were planted in 1748. In 1860, Gosport Chapel was designated a parish church with its own district, and named Trinity Church. Maps and photographs of that period show that the Church was situated in a walled rectangular piece of land, surrounded by 18th century houses, pubs, paths and roads, with the trees planted just inside the boundary walls. Entrance gates were to the east, west, and two to the north, with none to the south which is adjacent to Bastion No 1 ramparts. In 1887, Reginald Blomfield restored the church and two years later, on the north side, he added a campanile that became a notable Gosport landmark (Pevsner & Lloyd, 1867, 241). The Church and streets remained much the same until the 1960s, when massive clearances around the area made way for new tower blocks of flats, a new bus station, and new esplanade. The tombs in the churchyard were taken up in 1962, except the tomb of the Reverend Luke Nichols, who paid for the campanile.
By 1964, the churchyard had been cleared and levelled, 1000 roses had been planted and a wide expanse of green lawn sown. The Bishop of Portsmouth re-hallowed the grounds, after a service of thanksgiving. The Borough engineers and staff were responsible for the work. The area around the church and flats was named Trinity Green, and landscaping continued over several years. On the western entrance, the War Memorial to two world wars was restored in 1993. Flood lighting was installed in 1988, commemorated by a plaque. Plaques also commemorate the Silver Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth in 1977 and the formation of Trinity Green as an open space.
The Millennium was marked by the Trinity Green Time Space ‘a unique public area and timepiece’. It was built between the 1960s blocks of flats. Its design was inspired by Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity and his space-time cone diagram is represented within the paving. The clock design is an amphitheatre surrounded by four blocks of three raised steps encircling the west side and a lower grassed step to the east. The circular area has been paved as a giant clock with a central mast and cones that provide a shadow indicating ‘sun time’ and ‘sun date’. ‘The paving mosaic around the perimeter of the site depicts events and characters from Gosport’s rich maritime history’. A digital clock housed in the Millennium Gateway was linked to a light clock within the paving surface indicated by the Roman numerals and an acoustic system provided a chime for the clock at quarter hour periods (Plaque, 2013). The imposing gateway to the esplanade is raised on two blocks and poles and is shaped as a scroll.
A path from the War Memorial on Haslar Road provides the entrance to Trinity Green Church and a view of Trinity Green. The Green has a large number of semi-mature trees within a grassed area with boxed shrub planting, mainly of yew and cupressus, kept to a height of around three feet. The boxes conceal the lighting and also contain some roses. A rose bed, shown in a 1996 photograph as being immediately to the east of the nave of the church, has been replaced by a paved area with a curved cast seat and a path that leads to Trinity Green Time Space. To the south of the path, the grassed bastion remains with a backdrop of firs. The Oak trees to the west and east of the Church, planted to commemorate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee, appear to have been replaced, by cherry trees. Additional wooden seats are provided against the entrance and southern wall of the Church, adjacent to the surrounding path. From the Green, the approach to Time Space reveals a grassed area, a raised slope to the stepped blocks, the Millennium Gateway and a fine view of Portsmouth harbour and waterfront.
Trinity Green originally a mid-18th century churchyard now forms an open space surrounding Trinity Green Church that was redesigned in the 19th century by Reginald Blomfield, who also designed the adjoining campanile. This Green and the Time Space now provide the link and central features in a millennium development between Falkland Gardens, the Ferry Terminal, and Walpole Park.
HGT Research updated December 2013
Click here for Gosport District Borough site
HGT Research 1996
Hampshire County Council, Urban Parks Study 1997
Pevsner N. & Lloyd, D., Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, Penguin Books Ltd, 1997
Plaque on Trinity Green Time Space wall