Chapel of All Saints

When Lord Dufferin – the Viceroy of India (1884 – 1888) built the building of Viceregal Lodge in Shimla he also built a Church near that, basically to be used by the Viceroy and the people living in the estate. The total population of the estate of the Viceregal Lodge during Raj was 840 people out of which 40 were the Europeans and rest 800 were Indians. So the need of having a private chapel was felt.

Shimla Chapel near Viceregal Lodge

Shimla Chapel near Viceregal Lodge

The chapel was called the Chapel of all Saints and it remained in use till the independence of Indian in 1947. After that it began to suffer the ignorance of the authorities and now with time has deteriorated a lot. The outer shell of the building still stands behind the observatory house – now a hostel for the scholars, but the interiors has ruined completely.

Shimla Chapel near IIAS

Shimla Chapel near IIAS

Just walk towards the Chapel along the left of Fire Station Café, and after some time a tilted cross on the top of the chapel starts appearing. Huge sized iron water tanks actually hide the building of the church. As you near the tanks you discover an uneven shaped staircase to your right, once must have attained a perfect shape that leads you to the grounds of the church.

The architecture of the building looks like the copy Moc-Tudor. The font remains closed but the rear entrance has lost its door so provided a warm welcome to the visitors to go inside and see the actual signs of its deterioration.

Although the circular shaped ventilator above its front door has lost its tinted glasses but due to its shape and design still looks attractive

Old Chapel in Shimla

Old Chapel in Shimla

The ceiling beams are saved as the iron bars attached with the wooden beams and wooden pillars hold it tightly, but the altar is missing. The baptism tank sheds tears on remembering its past. The pews have, perhaps, been vandalized and the walls have lost their grace. Around the Church is growing weed and a large sized ditch is being used to through rubbish.

The building is crying to survive but not attention is being paid to it by the authorities. Many a times it has been heard that there are plans to renovate it but till now they are buried in papers. There are many other buildings in Shimla suffering the ignorance and are in the similar shape. But there is no one to come and wipe their tears.

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