The Church is in the heart of the Shirrell housing development, on the north side of Bellshill, on a site large enough to contain a Church, Presbytery, generous car-parking and a Parish Hall.
St Gerard’s Primary School, opened in 1973 - two years after the opening of the Church, is situated on the land to the north of the Church.
The site is virtually surrounded by housing and an attempt was made to design the Church complex in a manner and scale complementary to the dwellings of the people.
The Church, which is almost square on plan, seats approximately 500 and the seating is arranged with aisles radiating from the Sanctuary, which is situated in the south-east corner of the square, the main entrance being on the opposite or north-west corner.
Ancillary accommodation to the Church includes a Day Chapel which seats around 50 people with a separate entrance, a meeting room, Priests’ Sacristy, Altar Server’ Sacristy, working Sacristy, toilet accommodation and boiler house.
The Presbytery, which is linked to the Church, contained accommodation for the Parish Priest, two curates, and a housekeeper. Further accommodation has recently been added on the ground level for a retired Priest.
Externally, the buildings are finished with a golden brown facing brick, produced in Lanarkshire, and the Church has a deep fascia, originally of copper covered bituminous felt. This was damamged by bad weather in 2012 and was replaced with traditional zinc which has been detailed in a contemporary modern way changing the aesthetic of the building. Both the Church and Presbytery have flat roofs.
Floor levels have been kept low to minimise steps at entrances, and a ramp is provided at both the Main Entrance to the Church and at the Marian Chapel Entrance for ease of access for wheel-chair users.
Internally, the buildings are simply finished, with painted plaster walls and ceilings, except in the church which has a ceiling of acoustic tiles. Floors are generally of timer with vinyl covering where appropriate, the aisles of the church being carpeted. The sanctuary floor is of terrazzo tiles in two colours, and the vestibules are floored with ceramic tiles.
Construction of the buildings commenced in December, 1969 and was completed in May 1971.
The sanctuary was destroyed by fire in May 1986 and the church was subsequently closed until December of the same year. During this time substantial renovations took place to the Church.
Below are photographs of the Church today.
Side view of the Santuary
Statue of St Gerard Majella
Statue of Our Lady
Marian Chapel Sanctuary
Marian Chapel Sanctuary side view