Modern Places of Worship

Modern Places of Worship

An exploration of architecture, faith and identity in the UK.  Our latest project seeks to better understand the future of places of worship in the UK and their place in the community.  Sacred spaces have historically reflected advances in art, architecture and cultural practices.  We now ask what should a modern place of worship look like? What challenges do they face? Are they inclusive? What role can technology play?  Discover more below.

The Debates

Alongside partners across the UK, the Foundation will host a series of debates, bringing together local communities and leading figures from the fields of architecture, academia, heritage, theology and government. From inclusive worship to sustainable design, the topics selected for each debate are deliberately wide-ranging to encourage participation and stimulate productive dialogues.  Debates are free to attend and open to the public. Register via Eventbrite.  



The Report: 2017

In the project's second stage, the Modern Places of Worship Report, will bring together all of the debate discussions that have taken place across the UK. 

The report will distil our debate series, the contributions made by our audience and panellists, and the issues raised at them - before drawing together the broad conclusions that emerged from the debates. the report will also share the findings of our survey, conducted in partnership Empowering Design Practices.  

The report will also feature case-studies about some of the UK's most iconic and newly developing religious spaces.   Providing valuable insight - our aim is to develop a resource for those wishing to undertake innovative adaptation, conservation or indeed, design a modern place of worship. 

We hope the result will be a unique insight into the future of faith in the UK. 


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Filomena Saltao Liverpool University [Coordinator, Liverpool Debate]

"We developed a really good working relationship and I am looking forward to future collaborations."

Daniel Leon Friday Saturday Sunday Project [Panellist, Liverpool Debate]

"We took part in a most engaging debate with a prestigious and knowledgeable panel, and audience assembled...The whole series of lectures I feel is timely and important."

Dr. Andrew Crompton Liverpool University [Panellist, Liverpool Debate]

"It was a pleasure to host the Baroness Warsi Foundation at Liverpool University.  Their 'shared spaces' event fostered a  lively discussion of the sort that cannot happen on line; some issues have to be dealt with face to face, something their Foundation understands."

Canon David Stone Coventry Cathedral [Panellist, Birmingham Debate]

"This was a very welcome opportunity to engage with a rich variety of perspectives on a vital issue for modern Britain. Thank you for a really worthwhile evening, not least in helping draw attention to the opportunities that arise when religious communities are outward-facing – and so bring healing, strength and enrichment to the society to which we all belong."

Dr. Jagbir Jhutti-Johal Birmingham University [panellist Birmingham debate]

"The perfect evening to successfully discuss a very difficult and complex topic positively, sensitively and constructively. The diversity of attendees and presenters represented a cross section of opinions on this topic, which in turn ensured that the talks given by the panellists were passionate and enlightening, and the questions and comments from the audience epitomized all of the best things we want people to think about when discussing the future design of religious places of worship and their function. Most importantly, the audience discussion provided me a great opportunity to step back, learn, reflect and think differently about what modern places of worship should look like and what they should do."

Project Partners

Debate Gallery