A Most Surprising Church in Lower Kingswood

17th February 2022, 10:45 - 12:30



A Most Surprising Church in Lower Kingswood with optional pub lunch and walk to the Inglis Memorial


Thursday, 17th February 2022
Start time: Coffee at 10.45 am
The visit will finish at approx. 12.30
Optional lunch and walk should finish about 3.30 pm





The church of the Wisdom of God is unique in England: it is built like a Roman basilica and is filled with treasures from ancient Rome and Byzantium. From the outside, it looks like a very ordinary building but join our visit and learn the secrets of its interior. To follow the visit, we are organising an optional lunch at a local pub followed by a walk onto Reigate Hill to see the fabulous view from there.

This is a truly remarkable church and we are grateful to the ACMS for organising a visit for their members and those of the SHS.

The church was designed by Sidney Barnsley and this is his only church. He is better known for the design & production of Arts & Crafts furniture with his brother Ernest in the Cotswolds. In accordance with his sponsors’ request, it is in the style of a Roman or Byzantine basilica. In fact, the design is derived from the Church of St Irene in Constantinople. It is rectangular in shape dominated by a beautiful central apse on the eastern altar wall and is decorated with fine marbles and mosaics all in the style of Roman and Byzantine basilicas.

The visit will begin with coffee at 10.45am, followed by a talk about the church and its history with a chance to walk around for a closer look. The church will provide a booklet about the church which is included in the price of the event.

This should finish no later than 12.30 and those joining the lunch will need to drive the short distance to the Sportsman Pub.

By 2.15pm, we should be ready to set out on the walk. This is a stroll of roughly 2 miles, mainly flat but muddy in parts. You will definitely need strong footwear or boots as it is wet underfoot although there is no ‘deep mud’. Allowing time to enjoy the views, it will probably take about 1 ½ hours.

This event is not suitable for children and/or pushchairs or dogs.

Those members with mobility challenges are welcome to enjoy the visit to the church and join the optional lunch.

The cost for this event will be £10 for members of either SHS or ACMS* and £14 for Non-members which includes the visit, a booklet on the church and coffee. It does not include the lunch.

There is an option to book to visit the church only and an option to book to visit the church and join the walk after lunch.  Please use the correct option when booking and indicate in the comments box whether you would like us to reserve you a space at the pub for lunch.

*Would ACMS members please put ACMS in the comments box when booking.

Deadline for booking Friday 11 February 2022.

For further details and enquiries, contact us at

By continuing and making a booking you confirm that you have read, understood, and agree to the Terms & Conditions specified in our Cancellation Policy and Responsibility Statement, both of which can be viewed by clicking here


This event is fully booked. If you wish to have your name on our waiting list, please let us know via email or contact form.


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