ARCHBISHOP HEENAN of Westminster has urged archi tects and builders to consider especially the problems of "the aged, disabled and the handicapped" when designing and building Catholic churches in the future. His appeal is made in the foreword of the Catholic Building Review to be published on January I.
"Too often one sees the unnecessary steps which bar a wheelchair or the absence of a handrail where one would make movement so much easier," writes the Archbishop.
"It is most important that we Catholics should not lag behind when the problems of the aged, disabled and the handicapped are being discussed."
The Central Council for the Disabled estimates that by 1969 Britain will have more than 7,500,000 people over 65 and that four million of these will be over 70.
"Old age brings frailty. Accident and misfortune can mean dis
ability throughout the whole of life," he writes, and adds: "II is therefore for our architects and builders to think of these special difficulties and especially of the problems of access".
Archbishop Heenan points out that in school and Church design Britain has caught up with the Continent. But he emphasises the need for an overall reappraisal of design in the light of the Liturgical changes.
He also stresses that new educational theories and methods will mean changes in existing concepts of school-building. "The large comprehensive school, the school chapel, the youth wing, the language laboratory, and closed circuit television will present architects with new problems."