Chester Heritage Centre

St Michael’s Church is a redundant church standing on the corner of Bridge Street and Pepper Street in the city of Chester, Cheshire, England. A church on the site was burnt down in the great fire of Chester in 1188. It is not known when a stone church was first built but the chancel was built in 1496.The churchwardens’ accounts show that the church was almost completely rebuilt in 1582. During the Siege of Chester in the 1640s the church was used as a prison. In 1678 the chancel was widened and in 1710 a steeple 70 feet (21 m) high was built. Much of the church was rebuilt by James Harrison in 1849–50. It was declared redundant in 1972. It was acquired by Chester City Council and in 1975 opened as Britain’s first heritage centre. Its parish registers from 1560 have survived. It is recorded in the National Heritage List for England as a designated Grade II listed building. The former church is now used as a heritage centre.