About us

The Fitzrovia Chapel Foundation looks after the chapel on behalf of the local community, our visitors, other organisations and the wider public. We’re responsible for promoting its place in local history, heritage and culture.

We are also entrusted with the conservation, restoration, maintenance and preservation of the building and its contents. The chapel was never consecrated, or dedicated, nor was it ever registered as a religious building under English law. We have a licence so that marriages and civil partnerships may be conducted here. We also hold baby naming ceremonies, workshops, community events, concerts, launches, fashion shows and exhibitions. 

Open Days

The chapel’s original purpose was to provide a place for reflection and quiet contemplation for the staff and patients of the former Middlesex Hospital. We continue this tradition, opening the chapel on most Wednesdays to the public. Between 11:00 and 17:00, visitors are welcome to learn more of the chapel’s history, appreciate its breathtaking architecture or ‘just be’ in the calm and serene surroundings.

Meditation & Mindfulness

In these busy times, there is great value in giving ourselves permission to be still and look around us, to reflect and to engage only in the wealth of colour, soft light and sense of history that the chapel brings.  Increasingly, research tells us that practices such as mindfulness and meditation help ease anxiety, depression and social isolation. We offer the chapel to you as just such a space. Somewhere you can step out of the concerns of city life and feel you are in another world. A place to stop and wonder, but most definitely to stop.

There is no charge for our open days and you do not need to book. Please come as often as you would like. We value our community and love greeting familiar faces as well as new visitors. The chapel is wheelchair accessible.

’This beautiful jewel-box of a building’

Grayson Perry, Artist

Caring for the Chapel

As well as looking after the day-to-day care of this treasured space, the Fitzrovia Chapel team greets visitors, recounts its stories, cherishes its history, passes on the wonder. Whether you are seeking peace and calm on our open days, enquiring about getting married, studying our unique architecture or holding a fashion show or shoot, we can help guide you to the right place. And if you’d like to volunteer, let us know your skills and how you’d like to share them with the chapel.

The Team

Meet the chapel team

Madeleine Boomgaarden

Madeleine Boomgaarden


Madeleine comes to the chapel with a professional history of high-level communications and customer experience roles across the commercial, not-for-profit and government sectors. Working with the board and our team of volunteers and staff, she's responsible for making sure the chapel remains a place of inspiration for everyone in the local community and beyond.

Contact: Madeleine at madeleine@fitzroviachapel.org

John Aubusson

John Aubusson


John is an independent management consultant who has called Fitzrovia home for more than 20 years. He first visited the chapel in 2005 while recuperating at the hospital shortly before it closed, and so was delighted to accept the invitation to become Treasurer of the beautifully restored chapel as it reopened to the public in March 2016, allowing him to help shape the chapel’s growing role in the community and the arts.  In addition to overseeing the development of the chapel’s finance function and reporting, and his wider board responsibilities, John chaired the finance committee which meets quarterly in preparation for the board meetings. John now splits his time between Fitzrovia and El Gòtic in Barcelona, loving both dearly. He has now stepped down from the board and is the finance lead for the chapel.

Marion Dean

Marion Dean


Marion had the privilege of working for 20 years with children in the performing arts in the wonderful theatres in London. She enjoys every minute of being in the wonderful Fitzrovia Chapel. Marion looks after couples who visit the chapel to get married or propose - or anyone who wants a spectacular and intimate event - in this beautiful setting. As Wedding and Events Coordinator, she helps make everyone’s day memorable in this hidden gem in the heart of Fitzrovia.

Freya Bently

Freya Bently


Freya is the chapel's Culture and Commercial Manager.

The Trustees

Picture of Carla Whalen one of the Fitzrovia Chapel trustees

Carla Whalen


Carla is a charity lawyer based in south London. Before she entered the world of law, Carla studied music and English literature in Glasgow and worked for a time in arts fundraising. Carla is particularly attracted to the chapel’s history as a space for contemplation and reflection, and she feels privileged to be able to contribute to the continuance of this much-loved treasure.

Elliot Payne

Elliot Payne


Elliot is an architect and director of a small but dedicated architectural practice He is deeply interested in how and why we build the buildings we do and ultimately how this affects their sustainability, how they are created, how they will be used and how they will be reused. Listed buildings and heritage properties feature heavily in his work because they deliver a fascinating opportunity to observe these interests in other buildings from other times.
He first saw the building, but only the exterior, when it stood alone in the cleared site that is now Pearson Square. He had all but forgotten about this lonely little building until chance intervenes and, as he describes: 'this golden, lucid cacophony of ideas, histories and personal stories' had him beguiled.
Elliot joined the board in the hope that he could bring his pragmatic knowledge of dealing with such buildings to the use of the foundation. This includes overseeing and developing the building's maintenance planning, but more importantly ensuring that the chapel's unique nature as a place in London is not just preserved but receives its just use and enjoyment.

Jenny Pistella

Jenny Pistella

Jenny Pistella is a Heritage Learning specialist, working in public engagement and teaching museums, libraries and archives studies at Further and Higher Education. She is passionate about making museums, galleries and heritage sites relevant to people today. She has always loved the area around Fitzrovia and the chapel and it’s unique heritage and how it reflects the social history of the area. Jenny has over 15 years’ experience working in cultural organisations such as Historic Royal Palaces, the V&A, the UCL Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology among others. She is currently the Course Leader for Apprenticeships at Westminster Adult Education Service.

Samar Zia

Samar F. Zia

Samar F. Zia is a visual artist and art writer, originally from Pakistan. Through her art practice, she endeavours to activate the imagination of her audience, provoke thought and bring communities closer together. Representation for marginalised people is a great concern for her and the reason for being a member of the Alumni Of Colour Association (AoCA) of the University of the Arts London (UAL). She also freelances as an independent curator and art tutor.

As a former resident of Fitzrovia, the chapel is meaningful to her in more ways than one. Besides finding the interior architecture of the chapel absolutely awe-inspiring, she feels privileged to have held her first solo exhibition in London at the Fitzrovia Chapel in 2017.

David Woodhouse

David Woodhouse

David Woodhouse is a writer and local resident interested in the history of the chapel and the surrounding area. His publishes literary criticism on Lord Byron (who was born on Holles Street and baptised at St Marylebone) and William Hazlitt (who died on Frith Street and is buried in St Anne’s Churchyard). With John Leigh, David was co-author of Football Lexicon and the Mark My Words column in the Independent on Sunday. His latest monograph, Who Only Cricket Know, was launched at an event in the chapel and has won the four major Cricket Book of the Year awards. David is Treasurer of the Byron Society. His previous not-for-profit roles included a four-year term on the Audit Committee of UK Anti-Doping.