St Mary le Strand

The Church Building

St Mary le Strand is a justly celebrated architectural gem and a widely recognised landmark building. It has a grand and dignified worship space which makes it a sanctuary and place of peace in the heart of the district.

After the Great Fire and the subsequent rebuilding of St Paul’s Cathedral the City Commissioners proposed a scheme to build fifty new churches for London, of which St Mary’s is the first. The original church of St Mary le Strand was demolished in 1549 to make way for Somerset House.  In 1711, the parishioners successfully petitioned the Commissioners that a church should be reinstated in the Strand and work begun in 1714.  The new church was consecrated on 1st January 1724.

The church is a fine and beautiful example of baroque design by James Gibbs, an architect of high technical competence and originality, informed by a sophisticated knowledge of ancient, Renaissance and contemporary European architecture.  The church in its landmark setting in the middle of the Strand is a magnificent and memorable site, enhanced by the important visual connection with St Clement Danes church a short way to the East.

As a Church of England parish church St Mary’s has been a centre of parish worship and London life since the early 18th Century. The church’s prominent location in the heart of the metropolis on the processional route from Westminster and Buckingham Palace to the City of London is just part of its wider significance than the purely local.  St Mary’s is the London church of the WRENS (the Women’s Royal Naval Service).

The exciting plans for the pedestrianisation of the Strand, promoted by the Northbank BID, will be utterly transforming for the church.  It will create a piazza to the East and West of the church, which means it will no longer by isolated on a traffic island but will be open and accessible to all.

Venue Hire

St Mary’s is a place of Christian worship open weekly for private prayer and public services including the celebration of Life Events, such as, christenings and dedications, weddings and blessings, funerals and thanksgiving-memorial services.  As well as being a regular place of worship, in normal times, St Mary le Strand would be available to hire for a range of events from concerts and recitals, to art exhibitions and drinks.  For now, due to public health restrictions relating to the Covid-19 pandemic, the building is only available for public worship.

When things return to normal and you would like a venue with a difference then please contact the church team who will be very happy to help.


Strand London WC2R 1ES


Telephone :020 7836 3126