RepositoryChurch of England Record Centre
LevelFonds
Order NoCLARKE
Extent31 notebooks, 112 albums, 127 files, 1 volume
TitleCanon Basil Clarke Collection
Date1923-1978
DescriptionThe Canon Clarke collection contains material concerning the architecture and architects of Anglican and Roman Catholic Churches, predominately in England and Wales but also in Europe, Asia, Africa and America.

The collection contains written and typed notes, correspondence, newspaper cuttings, manuscripts, guide books, photographs and postcards arranged into the following series:

- Notebooks
- Papers
- Postcards
CreatorNameBasil Fulford Lowther Clarke
AdminHistoryBasil Fulford Lowther Clarke (1908-1978) came of an Anglican clerical family, was ordained in 1932 and after several curacies served for thirty years as vicar of Knowl Hill, Berkshire, in the Diocese of Oxford. He was the brother of cryptologist Joan Clarke (1917-1996) best known for her work as a codebreaker at Bletchley Park during World War II.

He was for many years secretary of the Oxford Diocesan Advisory Committee for the Care of Churches and member of the Council for the Care of Churches, of the Advisory Board for Redundant Churches and of the Westminster Abbey Architectural Advisory Panel.
His studies of church building, particularly of the post-Reformation period, bore fruit in the form of several books including Church Builders of the Nineteenth Century (1938), Anglican Cathedrals outside the British Isles (1958), The Building of the Eighteenth Century Church (1963) and Parish Churches of London (1966), all of which remain standard works in their field.

From the age of fifteen in 1923, encouraged by his father who was secretary of the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, until the end of his life Clarke kept manuscript notes on the numerous churches which he visited. By the time of his death 55 years later he had filled 31 notebooks with information on 11,479 Anglican and Roman Catholic churches in England, with occasional excursions abroad. This means that his notes cover about two-thirds of the churches of those two denominations in England.

Please note that the entry is based on notes by Donald Findlay, Deputy Secretary of Council for the Care of Churches, 1994.
CustodialHistoryHeld at Cathedral and Churches Building Division Library since 1978 (donation by Clarke's wife) until transfer to CERC in 2016.
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