San Gil Abad parish church is located in the highest part of the town, on a typical Andalusian street, Calle San Antonio, in the San Gil neighbourhood, also known locally as Cerro del Alcázar. It is well suited to its setting, which exudes regional character and essence.
Founded in the fifteenth century, in around the same time as Santiago church, San Gil is Écija’s oldest church (1479). Over the centuries, it has undergone several conversions and extensions, until almost the entire building was transformed into Baroque.
The building’s general structure is preserved from the original construction: a rectangular floor plan with three naves, each with five sections, separated by pointed arches supported by pillars. The church was remodelled in the third quarter of the eighteenth century, when groin vaults replaced the naves’ primitive wooden roofs. Additional works were also executed at that time: the baptismal and animas chapels were built, the apse remodelled, and the sacristy erected. Between 1727 and 1730, a building of one single nave, consisting of five sections, was transversally erected.
The tower, located to the left of the portal on the west end, was built between 1777 and 1782 by Écijan master, Antonio Caballero, in line with Antonio Matías Figueroa’ designs. It is the town’s tallest tower and considered the most beautiful by some.
Master carpenter, Juan Guerrero, created the main altarpiece between 1770 and 1780. Some of its elements date back to the first third of the same century, but were taken from another church’s retablo. A sculpture of Saint Giles stands in the retablo’s central niche, and date back to the first quarter of the sixteenth century. Many sculptures of saints feature in the side panels and a relief in the attic.