A Tribute Act to the Sistine Chapel, hidden away on the South Coast

Church of the English Martyrs

If you’ve ever wanted to visit the Sistine Chapel, but don’t want to deal with the crowds in Vatican City, then why not visit the only reproduction version in the world? This is situated in the less glamorous Goring-by-sea on the South coast of England.

This is the Church of the English Martyrs, nestled just a short walk from the beach at Goring.

From the outside the church looks quite low-key (so much so that I walked past it without realising), then you step inside and find this wonderful ceiling.

This was painted in 1987 by an enthusiastic parishioner Gary Bevans, who became inspired following a visit to see the real thing.  He is a sign painter with no art training.

The reproduction comes in at exactly 2:3 size of the original. 

As with Michelangelo, Gary Bevens stood on a platform with his head bent backwards to paint the ceiling. Now the church provides these handy mirrored trollies, so that you can view the ceiling without having to crane your neck. 

There is a convenient train station at Goring if you want to visit, however on the day I went there was a problem on the line and I walked from Worthing.  This involved a long walk through suburbia; I wouldn’t recommend it.

The beach in Goring, a typical beach of this area complete with beach huts and pebbles

Goring itself is a quiet place, popular with retirees. It has a pebbly beach, typical of this stretch of the south coast and a collection of pubs and cafes. The cafe on the beach comes recommended, but there was a long queue on the day I went, so I got the bus back to Worthing for my dose of caffeine.  

3 replies »

    • Hi, well the trips are a little less glamorous these days. I hope things are working out for you in your new neighbourhood

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