Christ Church Toxteth Park is part of the Toxteth and Wavertree Deanery of the Diocese of Liverpool. Our Parish is one of the greenest in Liverpool covering the entirety of Sefton Park and its surrounding residential areas, including the vibrant social spaces of Lark Lane.
Christ Church parish developed in the latter half of the nineteenth century as an affluent residential area. The twentieth century saw much decline in the housing stock, however, the last decade has seen great improvement. The population is approximately 5,500 (2001 Census) and is transient with many families and children.
In 1921, fifty years after Christ Church was first built, the following was written in a locally published booklet entitled The History of Christ Church:
“Christ’s Church, Toxteth Park was erected by the late G. H. Horsfall Esq. at a cost approaching £20,000. It was consecrated on April 27th, 1871, by Dr. Jacobson, Bishop of Chester … The Church all along has been famous for two things: singing and liberality … The liberality of Christ’s Church is well known …”
The old Schools in Lark Lane … were attached to St. Michael’s and Christ Church Parish had no place for either Day or Sunday Schools. At that time the building now known as K Garage was being erected, and before it was roofed in, the Vicar agreed to rent the upper room for £20 per annum. When the structure was finished le flets were distributed in the parish to let the inhabitants know that a Sunday School in connection with Christ Church would be opened in it, and as tempting inducements to attract scholars were held out, the new jerry-built erection was immediately filled with expectant scholars and the old St. Michael’s Schools were left with only a few scholars, scarcely exceeding teachers in numbers.
The Church Institute was built soon after, the old St. Michael’s Schools were sold to Christ Church for £800, half of which was received back for the benefit of Lark Lane children … The Institute … is the centre of parochial activity and a whole host of useful agencies find their home in it … The old St. Michael’s Schoolrooms are now used every night for a newsroom, billiard room, Social Club, Church Lads’ Brigade and Training Corps.”
Christ Church is situated near to Lark Lane, one of Liverpool’s hidden gems, nestled between Sefton Park and Aigburth Road to the south of the city centre. Its proximity to student residences, open green space and the variety of bars and restaurants makes it a popular venue as an alternative to the city centre. It’s referred to as ‘The Lane’ by locals and boasts a pretty eclectic mix of unique and independent shops, bars and restaurants. The street is a hub of community activity and has a lively bustling vibe day and night.
Sefton Park is a Grade 1 green space, located roughly within the historic bounds of the large area of Toxteth Park, spanning 235 acres. Today Sefton Park is a Green Flag and Green Heritage awarded site with beautiful features and monuments, hosting festivals and events throughout the year.
Christ Church shares a vicar with St. Michael in the the Hamlet Church. The Hamlet developed at the beginning of the nineteenth century as a collection of villas for the wealthy. Several were built by foundry owner John Cragg and his young architect Thomas Rickman. They also collaborated in building of St Michael in the Hamlet church (1814-15). The congregation of St Michael’s enjoys a traditional evangelical worship style and is large in number with many families. There are a variety of activities that take place at the church and its hall: please visit their website for more information.