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St Clements Anglican Church

Sitting midway up Jones Ave in the former hamlet of Leslieville, St. Clement's Anglican Church at first glance looks the same as many other churches. It's only upon a closer glance that one realizes the Victorian Gothic Revival building is unused; it's stained glass windows having been removed and replaced simply with plywood. New metal hasps and padlocks also adorn the doors to the church.

Location attributes for St Clements Anglican Church
(Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
Built :: Closed   Status   Difficulty
1914 :: 2006   Formerly Abandoned   ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
Hazards Risk   Security Risk   AUE Rating
★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆   ★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆   ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Hazard Observations   Security Observations
None Specified   None Specified

The St. Clement's parish in Leslieville formally dates back to 1895, when it became an independent parish with a church located on Queen St. E, near Leslie St. In 1899, a second church was built in the region, but even this was not enough to accommodate the growing congregation. Starting in 1910, plans were made for the new church, the one that still stands on Jones Ave.

Construction began in June of 1913, with the building mostly completed and opened in May 1914, although parts of it were still under work. A stained glass window, dedicated to parishioners killed in the Great War, was installed in 1921. An extension to the rear of the church was also added in 1921 and completed in 1923 - this room was used as a recreation room.

By 1970, however, the congregation was shrinking, and it never recovered back to it's former size. In 2006, the Anglican Diocese of Toronto announced the impending closure of the church. Since then, it can only be assumed that the Diocese removed many aspects of the church, such as the stained glass windows and wooden pews, both of which supposedly remained for some time untouched after the closure of the church.

New plans have arisen for the building. A developer has purchased the church lands, proposing to put small condos on the property. The plans do not call for the demolition of the church; rather, the plans call for some alterations made to the 1921 addition and redevelopment inside the church. This is also supported by the Heritage Preservation Services (HPS), who had the property brought to their attention in 2009 by local residents who wanted the building saved.

On January 14, 2011, after reviewing the background information and suggestions from HPS, the City of Toronto passed a new bylaw designating the church a heritage building.

And now, the building sits, awaiting its eventual conversion into condominiums.

To the Glory of God - 1913 - January 2011
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