St Mary’s Church at Kippington was built by a local benefactor, William Thompson, in 1880. He had acquired the Kippington Estate some years previously and resolved to establish a new parish church for his own estate.
Developments and improvements to the church in 2010 included new lighting throughout: in addition the South Porch was upgraded, installing a glass inner door that would increase the natural light levels within the church whilst also improving the look and feel of the entrance, eliminating draughts and providing a welcoming view of the interior for visitors.
The original entrance has intricated curved stonework above and around the door and the design commissioned for new glass entrance includes a curved glass over-panel to closely replicate the existing curved stonework.
The brief provided a fully frameless result that was congruent with the curved stonework of the existing entrance.
The glass door is considerably larger than average and is set between two narrow side panels and a shaped overhead glass transom. The glass door screen is stood off from the South porch wall with glass return panels and a curved glass ceiling panel, set into stainless steel channels in the walls and floor of the church.
Measuring only 250mm wide, the curved glass ceiling panel and side panels provide an unobtrusive result that was nevertheless a challenge both to manufacture and install.
Pivoting on a heavy duty hydraulic floor spring, the glass door is fitted with metre high handles in polished stainless steel for ease of operation in use, combined with a rubber finger trap guard for safety.
A large etched effect glass manifestation was applied to the door, in keeping with the style and design of the church.
The final structural CAD drawings, commissioned metalwork and fittings, delivery and installation logistics (including crane management) were all undertaken by Ion Glass.