Yorkshire Maintenance Project

 

The National Churches Trust has received £90,100 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for the Yorkshire Maintenance Project which will help keep churches and chapels in Yorkshire in good condition and prevent the need for expensive repairs.

Drone surveys of churches, training workshops to help volunteers maintain church buildings, and ‘MaintenanceBooker’, a new website allowing churches of all denominations to book gutter clearances and other urgent maintenance tasks, are the key parts of the Yorkshire Maintenance Project.

The Yorkshire Maintenance Project will help to sustain the rich religious built heritage of Yorkshire. There are 1,095 listed places of worship in Yorkshire. This total includes 346 Grade I churches, buildings of the highest heritage significance.

However, maintenance of these important historic buildings is often neglected, putting their future at risk.

Key aims of The Yorkshire Maintenance Project

The HLF funded Yorkshire Maintenance Project will set up a maintenance management system to address skills and information gaps for churches in Yorkshire. The key aims of the project are:

  • To increase the number of Yorkshire churches that regularly undertake gutter maintenance
  • To promote awareness of the benefits of preventative maintenance through training
  • To improve knowledge of the conditions of churches at high and roof level
  • To result in heritage being in better condition as a result of regular maintenance care and inspections

There are three parts to the project:

1. Drone surveys of churches to provide information and evidence for Management and Maintenance Plans, Quinquennial Inspections and immediate repair needs. Disks with images will be given to each church to share with their architect. The drone surveys will be carried out by Museum of London Archaeology (MOLA) - read about it on their blog here.

2. Training on church maintenance delivered by The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB) to churchwardens and other volunteers responsible for looking after church buildings. They will set up four new maintenance co-operatives in Sheffield, Doncaster and York offering two days of training and advice on practical elements. This will involve training volunteers on how to inspect their churches and chapels and undertake common low level maintenance tasks. Churches will be able to develop a successful maintenance plan.

3.  ‘MaintenanceBooker’, a web based maintenance service, allowing the people tasked with looking after churches to quickly identify and secure an appointment for maintenance services through a qualified crafts person or contractor. The service will be available to all churches across Yorkshire, listed and unlisted, and launched in February 2017.

For further information contact Janet Edmond, Project Manager, on 07734 392445 or at maintenance@nationalchurchestrust.org.