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The glazed faience relief in the tympanum of the west door on the exterior of the Church of St Michael and All Angels (1955-6, architects Hobday & Maynard), Ravenscroft Road, was made by Carter’s of Poole. It was designed for the architects by Jessie Bayes and depicts St Michael with a dragon and figures of angels. Jimmy James, the Deputy Decorating Department Manager, carried out some of the filling-in painting, and the background tiles were by A. B. Read and Peggy Angus.
The thirteen hand-made relief tile panels on the exterior of Sainsbury’s, Walter’s Yard and West Street, were designed and made by Kenneth Bright. The high-fired panels show aspects of the local townscape and were installed around 1993-4.
In exile from France, Emperor Napoleon III (1808-73) and his wife, the Empress Eugénie, came to live in Chislehurst in 1870. After the Emperor’s death, the Empress ordered the construction of a mortuary chapel (1874, architect Henry Clutton) as an extension of St Mary’s R. C. Church, Hawkwood Lane; however, the Emperor’s grand tomb was removed from Chislehurst to Farnborough Abbey in 1887, following the Empress Eugénie’s 1881 purchase of the mansion Farnborough Hill (see Farnborough, Hampshire) and the construction, from 1886, of the associated abbey and mausoleum. The pavement of the Chislehurst mortuary chapel includes decorative encaustic tiles made by the French firm Boulenger, established near Beauvais in 1848 (Fig 145). One of its founding brothers, Jean-Baptiste Aimé Boulenger (1825-87), specialised in the manufacture of encaustics, and was commissioned to make the Chislehurst tiles, some of which bear Napoleonic motifs.
The splendid faience ram, about three feet in height, on the outer end wall of Hillside Primary School (formerly Orpington-Ramsden County Primary School), Dyke Drive, was made by Carter’s and probably dates from the 1960s. The black-glazed ram is incised with white lines to the design of the school’s architect, Oliver E. Steer.
1.^ Carter Archive, Poole Museum Service, 3D-27 (Religion).
2.^ Hans van Lemmen, 'Napoleonic Tiles at Chislehurst', Glazed Expressions, (1985) 10, p12.
3.^ Tony Herbert and Kathryn Huggins, The Decorative Tile in Architecture and Interiors (Phaidon Press, London, 1995), p80.
4.^ Carter Archive, Poole Museum Service, CP45.
The Tile Gazetteer is Copyright © 2005 Tiles and Architectural Ceramics Society and Lynn Pearson, Richard Dennis.