St. Alban the Martyr

The Windows in the East Clerestory

From the opening of the church in 1881 until 1904, all of the tall clerestory windows had plain glass. In that year a two-light window designed and executed by Henry Payne, a leading member of the Birmingham Group of artist-craftsmen at the Birmingham School of Art was installed in the easternmost position, directly above the High Altar. This window was the gift of Howard Taylor Ratcliff, a prominent supporter of St Alban's, given as a memorial to the Pollock brothers. The theme of this window is the Te Deum laudamus, a canticle or song of praise to God used at traditional Prayer Book Morning Prayer.

In 1927 new two-light windows were added on either side of the central window. They were designed by Stourbridge-born Sidney Meteyard RBSA, a member of the Birmingham Group, who studied under Edward R. Taylor at the Birmingham School of Art, and given by James Frederick Deeming, who later gave the money to complete the church tower. Like the central window they are inspired by two more canticles from Morning Prayer, the Venite, exultamus Domino (Psalm 95) and the Benedictus Dominus or song of Zachariah (Luke 1:68-79).

This page is part of our project "Revealing St Alban's Hidden Heritage" supported by The National Lottery Heritage Fund.