The Real Presence

Have you read our recently published book The Real Presence written by Stephen Plaice. Just to tempt you here is a review which has recently appeared in the Anglo-Catholic History Society newsletter


"In my experience the most interesting churches are usually off the beaten track, away from city centres and situated in areas where tourists do not usually go. My favourite Brighton church is the Annunciation which blends in beautifully with the neighbourhood which it was built to serve. It is joined to the terraced housing. To be sure of getting inside I attended a Mass and was very warmly welcomed one sunny Sunday morning. To my absolute delight I found this history of the parish, published in 2014, written to mark the church’s 150th anniversary year, on sale on the bookstall. I had missed it somehow. It really is a very thorough piece of research by local historian Stephen Plaice, enthusiastically written and beautifully produced. There are 128 pages, good photographs, a detailed index and useful endnotes The Annunciation, we read, was founded as a mission to the poor at the height of the Oxford Movement and became a battleground between extreme anti-ritualist Protestants and Catholic Revivalists. The book tells the story of the priests and people of the Hanover district, documenting their struggles with poverty and sectarianism, as the Annunciation became the focus of civil and ecclesiastical litigation, street violence and even the “kidnap” of its ritual artefacts. Today the Annunciation and the other Brighton churches which were influenced early on by the Oxford Movement continue to stand their ground against a secular and liberalising society. A good read and highly recommended. "

Stephen Savage

The Real Presence – A History of the Church of the Annunciation, Brighton by Stephen Plaice. Price £8 plus P&P of £2.50 (total £10.50)  from: The Churchwardens 89 Washington Street, Brighton, BN2 9SR E-mail: cannunciation