St Mary’s is a Grade 2 listed building. It was built as the parish church of Alsager in 1898. The only building in the town where over 400 people can gather in warmth and comfort, it's used not only for services and quiet prayer, but also for meetings, classes, concerts, exhibitions and fund-raising events - by schools, charitable organisations. Alsager Music and Arts and other non-profit organisations.
The church is dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene, of whom little is known. She's said to have come from a village north of Tiberius, near the lake of Galilee. She was a follower of Jesus and was present at the foot of the cross with Mary, the mother of Jesus. She went to the tomb to anoint the body, as was the custom, but the tomb was empty. There the angel appeared to her to tell her that Christ had risen. Unable to comprehend, she wept, and then Christ himself spoke to her. According to a legend of the Greek church, she went to Ephesus with St. John, whom she married there. The legend tells that after dying in Ephesus she was buried in Constantinople.
Until the last decades of the nineteenth century Alsager was part of the parish of Barthomley, which meant the residents had a three mile walk along muddy lanes and across fields to worship. When the Rev. George Skene became rector of Barthomley in 1880, he felt that the pastoral needs of the Alsager people were not well cared for. The town's population was growing (mainly due to the railway). There were four non-comformist chapels, and no free pews at Christ Church.
With the help of village benefactors, a corrugateed iron chapel (known locally as the Tin Tabernacle) was erected in the centre of the village in Crewe Road. This mission room was a focus of village life for thirteen years. In 1883, after many functions and fund-raising events, the decision was taken to erect a permanent church.Designs were prepared by the architect Hubert J. Austin for a church built of Staffordshire sandstone in the perpendicular (Gothic Revival) style. The building work began in June 1894, the foundation stone laid by Lord Haughton.
By December 1896 the church was ready for worship with a temporary tiled roof where the steeple should have been and with an incomplete North aisle. Many items were donated including the lectern, chairs, kneelers and linen. On the completion of the new building it was proposed to the Bishop of Chester that Alsager should separate from Barthomley making it an independent parish with its own vicar.
The Venerable Archdeacon Woosman opened and dedicated the church on January 8th 1897. The church was consecrated on St. Peter’s Day.
Gradually the furnishings, including the pulpit, were acquired through donations from local benefactors, but it was forty years later in 1937 that the north aisle was completed. The exterior is still unfinished and 100 years later the ‘temporary’ roof is still in place above the west window.
The church has been re-ordered internally - comfortable chairs have replaced the pews; kitchen, toilet and office facilities have been added along with AV equipment and we have a nave altar.