God’s many mansions: a guide to the world’s greatest churches

The surroundings of the Crimea Memorial Church in Istanbul are ‘little better than a dump’, wrote the British embassy chaplain in 1964. ‘It takes an intimate knowledge of the place to find it.’ Today, the street running north-west from the Galata tower on the far side of the Golden Horn is quite chic. Turn right at the end and, above fig trees and trumpets of bougainvillea, you glimpse the lead-roofed spirelet of the church. It is by G.E. Street, the architect of St James the Less in Vauxhall Bridge Road, which also has stripes across nave walls and chancel vaulting. The competition to design the church in Istanbul demanded that