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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Mount View Road with Mount View Congregational Church

As well as being a decent view of Mountview Road from just east of the junction with Ferme Park Road, this Edwardian postcard shows the Mount View Congregational Church and lecture hall in the distance on the right, on the eastern corner of Granville Road. You may have noted that both the caption on the postcard and my rendering of the road name both use two words, which was and still is the correct way to write it. (Though, I must admit, I'd always thought it was just one word!)

Little seems ever been written about the church. What I have been able to find out is that it held its first service on September 26th 1894. Built at a cost of £9,000, the church seated 800 people. A hall was opened in April 1887 and used for worship until the completion of the church building. The church was closed and demolished in 1935.

I couldn't find any photo of the church, but I was able to find this line drawing, published when the church was first opened in 1894.

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Tags (All lower case. Use " " for multiple word tags): mountview road
Albums: Historical images of Stroud Green

Comment by Joanna Bornat on March 29, 2024 at 9:38

There’s been some dispute amongst nearby Albany Road residents as to whether you are right about the drawing being the Mount View Congregational church. The two have very different spires also it’s not clear if this is Mount View Road at all. The large gate posts on the right don’t seem to fit and the church should be at the junction with Granville Road but appears to be further away. 

Comment by Arkady on March 29, 2024 at 9:52

The old garden wall of the church is still in place, partly obscured by the hedge that fringes the block that replaced the church.

Comment by Arkady on March 29, 2024 at 9:54

And yes, the drawing is of the quite different church that was on the corner of Granville and Stapleton Hall. The church hall survives, which can be seen on the drawing and on google street view.

Comment by Hugh on March 29, 2024 at 9:59

Well, that's strange (but possibly true). The image was published by the Hornsey Journal to illustrate  an article about the church's first service. Would the paper really have just used a generic church picture? I suppose the typesetter could have just used the wrong picture by mistake.

I wonder if we're thinking of different buildings, Arkady. Do you have a link and screenshot for the church hall you're thinking of, because I wasn't able to see it when I looked.

Arkady, you seem quite certain that's it's wrong. Can I ask what makes you so certain?

Comment by Arkady on March 29, 2024 at 10:11

The picture at the top is looking *east* down MVR where I used to live. The short-lived Congregational church can be seen on the right at the end, on the junction on MVR and Granville. It had a small spire on its long nave, as can be glimpsed in the picture. The sketch, on the other hand, is of a much bigger beast. The church hall on the left of the sketch survives on Granville- just look on Google street view- it's ecavtly the same. The church was pulled down well after the war after suffering some damage then. The peace gardens are where it used to be, with a modern vicarage taking up part of the site.

Comment by Arkady on March 29, 2024 at 10:17

Actually hands up, I think I'm wrong. The sketch doesn't match the original Holy Trinity. Still odd though as the spire in the photo doesn't match the sketch- unless it lost its main spire at some point.

Comment by Hugh on March 29, 2024 at 10:29

Thanks. I was perplexed, but as you say, there's not a clear match between the drawing and what we can see in the postcard. I've also just been through the paper published the week after the one that contained the drawing and I couldn't find any erratum, nor any letter for an outraged of Mountview Road. Then there are those Albany Road residents that Joanna has mentioned. So, it's clearly not a slam-dunk either way.

Comment by Joanna Bornat on March 29, 2024 at 10:36

Attached is a copy of the Holy Trinity Church Peace Garden notice board  at the other end of Granville Road, with the image of Holy Trinity church, as was, until damaged by the Granville Road V1 bomb in July 1944 and then finally demolished in 1960. The garden can be visited, when the rain stops! (Click image for a larger copy).

Comment by Hugh on March 29, 2024 at 10:58

Comparing the two images in the original post again, I think I can see that the spire visible in the postcard is probably a match for the small spire shown on the roof of the church in the drawing. The tower however seems to be absent in the later picture.  The article accompanying the picture might offer some clues. It included the following,

"... The full plan of the church includes the completion of the tower ..."
(My emboldening and underlining).


"... the committee had held a great many meetings, and they had approved the plans for the present building, at the cost which had already been stated of £9,000. The first half of that sum had been secured."

From the foregoing, I think it would fair to assume that the drawing was one made by the architect to illustrate what the finished church would look like. After the main part of the church had been built, it was put into use with the intention of building the tower once the funds had been raised. Apparently, the money was never available and the tower never got built. This is exactly what happened with the last St Mary's Church on Hornsey High Street. The planned church pictured below ...

... became the one shown in this colourised postcard. (The image shows a view towards the south end of the church from Church Lane. The tower had been planned for the north end ).

The church is shown from the front, looking rather truncated here.

Comment by John Shulver on March 29, 2024 at 19:08

It's so easy to forget or overlook the death and destruction that occurred on our shores.........even though our elders relayed tales to us younger generation.

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