Brief History by SueB
In 1843 Sherwood and Carrington were formed into the parish of St John’s, Carrington, when the church was built there. But the area was still referred to as being part of the parish of Basford until the late 19th century. Not having a nearby strong Anglican influence non conformism began to flourish, especially when Sherwood first became a community in the mid 1820’s.
In 1883 the first Church of England premises were erected on Mansfield Street , Sherwood, not a church of grand design, but a Mission Room of St John's, in the parish of Carrington
The building of the Sherwood Estate after World War 1 increased the parish of Daybrook by some 2,000 souls. Clearly a new church and new parish were needed, but Nottingham Corporation refused permission for a church to be built on the new estate. Not easily thwarted, Colonel F L Seely guaranteed the money for a plot of land on which the Church of the Transfiguration affectionately known as ‘The Tin Tabernacle’, could be built.
It was constructed on Joyce Avenue behind the Cedars on Mansfield Road in 1922, at a cost of almost £1,000. It continued to be known affectionately known as the 'Tin Tabernacle' although clearly not made of tin or any other metal.
Enough money was also raised to provide a stipend for Mr P S Abraham to serve as Deacon
On August 6th 1922, the Feast of the Transfiguration, a few people met at the site on Joyce Avenue to hold a service proclaiming the presence of the Church in Sherwood. This was the first in the chain of events leading to the establishment of St Martin's.
The initiative had been taken by Revd A R Browne-Wilkinson of St Paul's in the parish of Daybrook , which then included the new Sherwood estate.
Rev Edward Lysons took over as priest on 6th February 1926 and dedicated his time to the ideal of providing a permanent church for Sherwood. In 1927 another temporary church was built on Trevose Gardens, this was later to be used as the church hall. Meantime the 'Tin Tabernacle' continued to be used for Sunday Schools, until it was sold in 1944 to the Nottingham General Hospital to be used as a rehabilitation centre.
It was demolished in 1982.
The new temporary church cost £4,500, much of it provided by the Diocesan Church Extension Committee, and was dedicated on November 10th 1927, one day before the Armistice Day services which coincide with St Martin's Day. Services were held there for almost ten years until the new church of St Martin's opened in February 1937. Rev Lysons began his ministry in Sherwood on February 6th 1926 and exactly eleven years later to the day the new church was consecrated by the Bishop of Southwell.
It is a monument to the enthusiasm, drive and hard work of the then Rev’d Lysons and his helpers. The dedication to St Martin, the great soldier-saint of the 4th century, was appropriate.
In 1926 Sherwood, with a population of around 9000, was made a Conventional District, and on November 13th, 1936 St Martin's became an Ecclesiastical District. It was taken partly from the parishes of St Paul's, Daybrook , St John’s, Carrington, and St Jude’s, Mapperley.
The Diocese acquired the site on Trevose Gardens, for the church and parsonage. Following the clearance of the debt incurred in building the temporary church, a new Building Fund was started with the aim of raising £20,000 by December 1932.
At last, on December 14th 1935 the foundation stone was laid by Brigadier General Sir Edward Le Marchant. Edward H Heazell, a local man, could now proceed with the erection of the church he had designed. The Bishop of Southwell, the Rt Revd Henry Mosley, performed the consecration ceremony on February 6th 1937. The following day the first Eucharist was marred by the death in church of John Bradley, the verger, whose wife had died only the day before.
Sherwood now had a permanent church although the building was not completed until 1960’s. The vicarage, adjacent to the church, was completed in 1956. Prior to that Canon Lysons lived in a large house at the corner of Elmswood Gardens and Mansfield Road.
Rev’d William Willatt continued the traditions established by Canon Lysons.
Following him, in 1960, came Rev’d Timothy Tyndall who insisted that the church building be completed. He was also a great believer in 'the building of God's Kingdom ... by the churches in partnership'. His work was carried on by his successor Rev’d Ian Gatford, Ian was succeeded by Rev’d Christopher Gale in 1984. One of his innovations was a monthly magazine, The Sherwood Messenger, which is still distributed free to all houses in the parish. The first female incumbent, the Revd Sylvia Griffiths, was appointed in 1999.