Our latest grants help 54 churches and chapels

Published: Friday, August 3, 2018

 

54 churches and chapels in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are set to benefit from rescue funding of £310,059 from the National Churches Trust.

11 of the churches being helped are on the Historic England 'At Risk Register'.

Churches receiving grants from the National Churches Trust include:

  • St Buryan, in the village of St Buryan, Cornwall, a huge, Grade I listed collegiate church, ‘the Cathedral of the West’ dedicated to St Buriana, a 5th century Irish Saint, receives a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent tower and stonework repairs. The church has a rare four stage tower, the heaviest ring of six bells in world, possibly the most impressive medieval rood screen in Cornwall and more wayside crosses than any other parish in Cornwall. The church is On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.
  • St Michael-in-the-Hamlet church in Toxteth Park, Liverpool, Grade I listed, one of only two surviving cast iron churches by John Cragg and Thomas Rickman, receives a £20,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent roof repairs.  Built in 1815, the tracery, pinnacles, mouldings and building frame are all of cast iron. The church was part of the Cast Iron Shore – an area on the Mersey full of iron works. The area's cast iron houses are now gone, but the church remains, a vital part of a Conservation Area. The church is On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.
  • St Bartholomew, in Tong, Shropshire, a magnificent Grade I listed church, often called the 'Westminster of the West Midlands', receives a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent tower and spire stonework and window repairs. The church, one of a handful of Grade I listed churches in Shropshire, has been preserved almost in entirety since its foundation in 1410. Often called the 'Westminster of the West Midlands' it boasts a splendid carved stone fan-vaulted ceiling in the Golden Chapel together with a unique collection of mediaeval tombs and monuments. Literary connections link the church to Shakespeare and Charles Dickens, being the reputed location for the closing chapters of The Old Curiosity Shop and Little Nell's burial place.  The church is On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.
  • Brighton Unitarian Church, a Grade II listed building, receives £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help repair the classical portico entrance.  Brighton Unitarian Church was built in 1820. Architect Amon Henry Wilds designed the church in the style of the Temple of Theseus, with a classical portico, columns, and steps. It is part of Brighton’s Regency streetscape, built on land purchased from the Prince Regent in a prominent position opposite the Royal Pavilion and the Corn Exchange. The church has been a place of worship for nearly 200 years, services are held every Sunday for a lively and engaged congregation.

Huw Edwards, broadcaster and journalist and Vice President of The National Churches Trust said:

“I'm delighted that the future of 54 churches and chapels in England, Scotland and Wales is being safeguarded thanks to grants of £310,059  from the National Churches Trust.

 “Churches and chapels are some of the UK’s most beautiful buildings, a treasure trove of architecture, history and faith. Religious heritage belongs to all of us, so if you’re looking for a day out this summer, why not visit a church or chapel and discover what makes them so amazing.”

You can see photos of the churches receiving Repair and Community Grants on Flickr.

Five Churches receive Community Grants towards the cost of projects introducing facilities such as kitchens and accessible toilets to enable increased community use and 13 receive Repair Grants towards the cost of urgent and essential structural repair projects as follows.

ENGLAND

CORNWALL

St Buryan, St Buryan, Cornwall TR19 6BB

Diocese of Cornwall - Anglican – Grade I

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Buryan, in the village of St Buryan, has received a funding boost of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent tower roof and stonework repairs as part of a major project to safeguard its future and remove it from Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register. 

The church was awarded £40,000 National Churches Trust Cornerstone grant in 2011 towards valley gutters and inner slate roof repairs.

The project

The project includes the complete re-leading of the roof, a range of remedial work to roofing timbers and a range of masonry and re-pointing work to the tower. The work will ensure this vital, Grade I listed structure is protected and maintained. It is a structure visible for miles around on both land and sea. The peel of bells is of international importance and they are rung by many visiting ringers from throughout the UK and beyond. There is a real danger that the tower may have to close due to the condition of the roof structure. In addition to the physical condition, the tower and church is a backdrop to the village and the residents regard it as their heritage and a centrepiece to St Buryan.

The church

St Buryan is a busy, friendly, Cornish village, dominated by its huge, Grade I listed collegiate church, ‘the Cathedral of the West’ dedicated to St Buriana, a 5th century Irish Saint. The church has a rare four stage tower, the heaviest ring of six bells in the world, possibly the most impressive medieval rood screen in Cornwall, a magnificent Heard organ, a unique heritage, and more wayside crosses than any other parish in Cornwall. The tower is used as a navigational aid for the ships who are travelling around the Land’s End coast and those who are travelling to the Isles of Scilly.

Over the years, many thousands of people have gathered at the church, to celebrate, to grieve and to make their prayers. It is the site of regular pilgrimage and a point of rest on the Land’s End to John O’Groats marathon cycle ride. 

 Revd Canon Vanda Perrett, Rector of St Buryan said:

“As the Rector of St Buryan I know our whole community will be delighted with the news of the National Churches Trust grant. We thank them for their kind and generous donation of £10,000 towards the work on our tower; the total cost of the work needed to repair the tower is £220,000. “

“This is part one of a larger scheme of refurbishing and repairs to our unique building to make it safe and secure for the future, but also to make it fit for purpose today. In addition to the tower works, we have recently renewed the heating system and sound system and are beginning the process of putting a toilet and kitchen into the building.”

“ The work of raising finances for this is a great challenge. To have this grant from the National Churches Trust is not just a much needed boost to our financial fundraising but is also a boost to our fundraisers who will be greatly heartened by receiving support for our vision for the future of this wonderful historical sacred space at the tip of Cornwall. Thank you! “

DERBYSHIRE

St Mary, Chaddesden, Derbyshire, DE21 6LS

Diocese of Derby – Church of England – Grade I

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Mary’s church, Chaddesden, has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent roof repairs in order that the church can be removed from Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register. 

The project

The project will tackle urgent roof repairs needed at St Mary’s church. Previous leaks caused a large section of the ceiling to collapse, and sometimes drips fall on people in the pews! Without the repairs, the building would fall into ruin.

The project will replace the slate roofs on one of the aisles and the nave and repair the lead on the tower roof. There will also be improvements to the rainwater goods to protect the new roofs. This will make the building water tight, and protect its heritage for future generations.

The church

St Mary’s church is a beautiful Grade I listed building. It was built in 1347 as a small chapel, and expanded in 1420 with the north and south aisles and the nave being added.

It is well used and loved by the local community, with a large congregation, school visits, and children’s church. The local historical society also regularly uses the church where people can browse parish registers dating back hundreds of years.

Rev Dr Jason Ward, said:

“This grant is such good news for the church family at St Mary’s in Chaddesden. With the roof failing so badly we were ready to move to our little hall, and run church and share the news of Jesus from there. However, with the support of a number of organisations, including Historic England and the National Churches Trust, we can repair the roof and preserve this ancient building for all to appreciate. We are very grateful indeed to the Lord for National Churches Trust which means that Phase 1 of our roof repair project can happen. Thank you.”

DEVON

St Michael, East Anstey, Devon, EX16 9JN

Diocese of Exeter – Anglican – Grade II*

St Michael, East Anstey, has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent roof, masonry, and gutter repairs.

The project

The stonework on the tower of St Michael’s church is in poor condition with stones falling from the tower on a number of occasions. The tower also suffers from damp with increasing ingress of water. Without prompt intervention, more serious damage will occur. The base of the tower is already an exclusion zone due to the health and safety risk of falling masonry.

Work being funded will ensure that the church will be safe for the future.

The church

St Michael’s church stands on the southern slopes of Exmoor, sited prominently at the top of the village.  East Anstey parish is designated of “Great landscape Value”, with the church and tower standing prominently at the top end of the village.

Most of the church is believed to be from the fifteenth century, but the tower appears to be older, perhaps Norman. The first recorded incumbent was in 1263.

Renovations have taking place over the past few hundred years, including Victorian additions. The bells are rung regularly, and some are amongst the oldest in the south west.

ESSEX

St Barnabas, Great Tey, CO6 1JS

Diocese of Chelmsford – Church of England – Grade I

St Barnabas Church in Great Tey has received a funding boost in the shape of a £7,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant for its project to install accessible facilities to make the church comfortable for all.  

The project

Helped by a £7,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant, St Barnabas will install an accessible toilet and baby changing facilities. There are currently no toilet facilities for worshippers or visitors. This will be of particular help to parents with younger children and enable the church to welcome visitors who have travelled long distances for christenings, weddings, and funerals.

 The church

St Barnabas is a Grade I listed Norman church. Its central tower dominates the village – the roof is said to be one of the highest points in Essex. The tower walls are of re-used Roman brick quoins, iron stone, and flint. The belfry windows are surrounded with round columns with modelled faces.

The body of the church have limestone dressings and Roman cement cappings on the north transept. The chancel was rebuilt in the early fourteenth century, and the nave in the nineteenth century.

Rev John Richardson, M.A., Rector said

“This new facility of an accessible toilet will be a huge blessing to our church at Great Tey.  It will mean that visitors, worshippers, and user groups of all kinds can find at the church a much needed facility which all can use. The church is deeply grateful to the National Churches Trust for their support of this project through grant funding.  The toilet fits well into the existing fabric of the church and has been sensitively designed by the church's architect to be unobtrusive and yet accessible to all.”

St Michael, Kirby le Soken, Essex, CO13 0EH

Diocese of Chelmsford – Anglican – Grade II*

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Michael, Kirby le Soken, Essex has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent structural repairs and remove the church from  Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.

The project

The project helped by the National Churches Trust will deal with urgent structural repairs. There are large vertical cracks in the east wall where it has moved away from the other walls due to subsidence. Parts of the church are roped off and unsafe because of falling masonry, meaning the organ cannot be played. Without the repairs the building is at risk of closure.

The wall will be stabilised with reinforced concrete beams, then the damage will be repaired and the internal plasterwork will be made safe.

The church

St Michael’s church dates from the fourteenth century. It was restored in the early nineteenth century, and rebuilt in the 1870s. Built of stone, flint, and septaria with stone dressings, it has plain red-tiled roofs with pierced and scalloped ridge tiles and cross finials. The east window in the chancel has a trefoiled roundel, with stone and flint dressings. There is a large west tower of three stages with diagonal buttresses, and a raised octagonal stair turret.

GLOUCESTERSHIRE

St Mary, St Peter and St Paul, Westbury on Severn, Gloucestershire GL14 1PW

Diocese of Gloucester - Anglican – Grade I

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Mary, St Peter and St Paul, Westbury on Severn has received top-up funding of a £6,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent spire repairs as part of a major project to safeguard its future and remove it from Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.  

The project

The project was caused by the rotting of the old oak shingles on the spire. These were removed under a previous project which was then unable to cope with the vastly increased financial burden of the additional structural problems which became evident. The effect of this was to have to clothe the newly restored spire in plastic sheeting. New oak shingles will now be able to be fitted to the spire.

The church

It is an extraordinarily large church, dating from about 1300. An unusual feature is a detached stone tower, possibly built about 50 years before this. The impressive, and possibly unique, spire was added within the following 100 years and is made entirely of wood. Looking up inside, it resembles a giant spider’s web of timber. The tower contains six bells, the heaviest ring of six in Gloucestershire. The church has a fine collection of Victorian stained glass windows by well-known firms including Clayton and Bell, Kemps and Tower and an interesting Norman font with an Elizabethan base.

Simon Phelps, Churchwarden, said:

“The local community are delighted that work on the spire has recommenced and are looking forward to seeing the new shingles in place. We are extremely grateful to the National Churches Trust for their renewed generosity. Their help has again made the difference. The tower and spire will have been successfully preserved for future generations.”

HEREFORDSHIRE

St Peter, Titley, Kington, Herefordshire, HR5 3RR

Diocese of Hereford – Church of England – Grade II

St Peter’s Church in Titley has received a funding boost in the shape of a £7,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant for its project to install an accessible toilet and kitchen area.   

The project

Helped by a £7,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant, St Peter’s Church will install an accessible toilet and kitchen area at the east end of the north aisle. The church has no facilities at the moment, and no running water, meaning some elderly people or those with young children are dissuaded from coming to church, and the church cannot offer refreshments.

Once the new facilities are in place, the church is planning more community events and those aimed at young families. The whole community supports the plans, which will make the church a more comfortable place of worship and a flexible place for the community to use outside worship times. It will improve the social well-being of the area, which suffers from rural isolation. 

The church

The present church building was built in 1865 by E Haycock Junior, on the site of a former Tironensian monastic cell. The tower was built around 1834, paid for by Lady Elizabeth Coffin Greenly. The Greenly family lived at Titley Court from the early sixteenth century.

A Grade II listed monument commemorating Edward Harley, 1664-1735, Auditor of the Imprests and MP for Droitwich and Leominster, can be found in the churchyard. So too is a monument to exiled Hungarian national hero General Lázár Mészáros, who died here in 1858.

Reverend Ben Griffith, Vicar, said:

"On behalf of all of the residents of Titley, I would like to express our sincere thanks to the National Churches Trust for their generous grant. At present Titley Church has no modern amenities and this severely curtails the service that the Church can offer to its community. This project will be of inestimable value to both locals and visitors alike for many years to come.

"We’re privileged in Titley to have an outstanding Public House and a much valued Village Hall. These facilities will mean that finally the Church can complement them at the heart of our community just as it should.”

MERSEYSIDE

St Michael-in-the-Hamlet, Toxteth Park, Liverpool, L17 7DB

Diocese of Liverpool – Anglican – Grade I

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Michael-in-the-Hamlet church in Toxteth Park, Liverpool,  one of only two surviving cast iron churches by John Cragg and Thomas Rickman, has received a funding boost in the shape of a £20,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent roof repairs and remove the church from Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register. 

The project

The project helped by the National Churches Trust will create a complete new roof structure, ventilated and insulated, with new stainless steel coverings. The north aisle roof had reached the end of its life and the expansion of rusting iron has caused stone pinnacles to crack and become dangerous. Water ingress is widespread, and has caused rot and corrosion within the roof structure – now at risk of collapse.

Alongside the repair will be heritage interpretation displays to engage visitors with the history of this much-loved and iconic building.

The church

St Michael-in-the-Hamlet in one of only two surviving cast iron churches by Cragg and Rickman. Built in 1815, the tracery, pinnacles, mouldings, and building frame are all of cast iron. The exterior is Gothic Revival, Perpendicular in design with spectacular east window tracery. The church was part of the Cast Iron Shore – an area on the Mersey full of iron works, which was used in buildings. Even the shore was stained red with iron. The cast iron houses are now gone, but the church remains, a vital part of a Conservation Area.

Added in 1919, the tower clock commemorates the fallen of the First World War, as does a stained glass window by local artist Gustav Hiller. A monument commemorates Jeremiah Horrox (1618-41), known as the Father of Modern Astronomy. 

SHROPSHIRE

St Bartholomew, Tong, Shropshire TF11 8PW

Diocese of Shropshire - Anglican – Grade I

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Bartholomew, in Tong, a magnificent Grade I listed church, often called the 'Westminster of the West Midlands', has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent tower and spire stonework and window repairs which will remove the church from Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.  

The project

The project helped by the National Churches Trust will include repairs to the church’s spire and tower and remove health and safety concerns from falling masonry. Iconic architecture including a weathervane, pinnacles and gargoyles will be repaired or replaced. Window repairs will reduce water ingress and draughts to mitigate problem with cold and damp, thus improving the internal temperature and humidity. This will help to conserve highly significant internal historical features as well as make the church more comfortable and welcoming for visitors and worshippers.

The repairs will secure the building for future generations of local residents and international visitors alike and help alleviate chronic issues with damp and cold. This phase of restoration is pivotal to achieving the overall Tong 2020 Vision which sees the church equipped to meet 21st century visitor expectations as well as improve the appeal for other community uses.

The church

St Bartholomew is a fine 15th century Perpendicular Gothic Collegiate Church, one of a handful of Grade I listed churches in Shropshire, preserved almost in entirety since its foundation in 1410. Often called the 'Westminster of the West Midlands' it boasts a splendid carved stone fan-vaulted ceiling in the Golden Chapel together with a unique collection of mediaeval tombs and monuments.

Now on Historic England's Heritage at Risk Register, it survived Tudor court intrigues, the Reformation, and two Civil War sieges. Literary connections link the church to Shakespeare and Charles Dickens, being the reputed location for the closing chapters of The Old Curiosity Shop and Little Nell's burial place.

SHROPSHIRE

St Lucia, Upton Magna, Shropshire SY4 4TZ

Diocese of Shropshire - Anglican – Grade II*

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Lucia, in Upton Magna, has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent roof and structural repairs which will remove the church from Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.

The project

The project helped by the National Churches Trust will include major repairs to the roof of St Lucia to stop the spread of damp and water ingress, which is seriously affecting the walls, foundations, organ and the church’s Victorian wall paintings. The repair project will prevent closure of the church and remove it from the Heritage At Risk register.

Having a safe, watertight and warm building will provide the opportunity to re-establish activities within the church which they have had to put on hold for the past three years, especially those involving our young people. It will also enable St Lucia’s rich history and heritage to be to be enjoyed now and shared with as wide an audience as possible.

The church

A Christian community has been worshipping in St Lucia’s, formally St Lucy, the patron Saint of eyesight, for over a thousand years. Built in Grinshill stone, it dates from a similar time to nearby Haughmond Abbey.

The nave and chancel are from the 12th century, with existing pairs of small Norman, possibly Saxon, round-arched windows. Archaeologists believe some foundation stones are Saxon. Two of the original bells and the very old, rare and precious service bell 1499 remain.

In 1856 the famous church architect G.E. Street added the north aisle and much of the mouldings, floor tilings, fittings and stained glass including a St Lucia window.

Outside there is a substantial, well-maintained churchyard, a habitat for mason bees, areas of wild bluebells and a memorial daffodil bank, several listed tombs, WWII grave and a listed oak lych gate.

Linda Carding, churchwarden said:

 “We are delighted that the National Churches Trust have awarded us this grant towards repairing and preserving our ancient church. The church plays an important part within the local community, and we hope to develop ways to share its interesting and varied heritage with the wider community.”

SOMERSET

All Saints, Isle Brewers, Somerset, TA3 6QN

Diocese of Bath & Wells - Anglican – Grade II

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

All Saints, Isle Brewers, has received a funding boost of a £18,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund urgent roof, stonework and ceiling repairs as part of a major project to safeguard its future and remove it from Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.  

The project

This project will make the building safe by fixing the roof and repairing the tower.  Once the church is in a good state of repair, the church will become a community hub serving a small village (population of less than 150) with no other community space.  When complete, the building will be removed from the Heritage at Risk Register.

The church

The Anglican parish church of All Saints was built in 1861 by Charles Edmund Giles. The original Church of All Saints stood near the Domesday mill, and the current building was funded by the vicar Joseph Wolff, a Jewish Christian missionary of German ancestry who converted to Catholicism, before being ordained in the Anglican church. He later died in the village.

The first part of the name of the village comes from the river Ile, which separates the parish from Isle Abbots. The second part comes from the family of William Brewer (Brewer) who were the lords of the manor in the early 13th Century.

John Boulter who led the village application said:

‘This is wonderful news for the entire village. Not only will a beautiful old building be saved but a community space will be created for all to use, something that has been sorely lacking for many years.  Long may the Church continue to thrive.

The first phase plans for the Church are being launched on the 4th August with a view to these being finalised during September.  Tenders will follow thereafter.  

The Church has been the focal point of the village in the past and it is hoped that it will be used by many community groups in the future. Plans are already afoot for the many ways this community hub might develop in years to come, so watch this space.

STAFFORDSHIRE

Sacred Heart, Tunstall, Stoke on Trent, ST6 6EE

Diocese of Birmingham – Roman Catholic – Grade II

Web address:

Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in Tunstall has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant for its project to develop the crypt as a community hub. 

The project

Sacred Heart is planning to redevelop its large crypt as a fully accessible community space with a kitchen and toilets. At the moment there is no space for community activities.

The large crypt area under the church will be developed as a self-contained, fully accessible community space with kitchen and toilets. It will provide affordable and accessible community space in Tunstall for community groups to hire.

The church has been working with the local community to gain their views on the services to be provided in the new space. An Open Day was held to engage everybody with the plans.

The church

Sacred Heart is a major building in the Tunstall Park Conservation area and is at the heart of the regeneration of Tunstall town centre. The Tunstall mission started from Cobridge in 1853 in a dual purpose school/chapel dedicated to St Mary. A new church was built in 1869 and remained in use until 1930 when the present church was opened by Archbishop Downey of Liverpool, who described the building as 'a miracle of beauty'.

The architect, JS Brocklesby also designed the nearby St Joseph's, Burslem. He was reportedly dismissed by the Parish Priest Fr PJ Ryan, who continued as clerk of works himself, using unemployed parishioners in the construction.

Much of the stained glass and woodcarving was created by young parishioners under the guidance of Gordon Forsyth, Director of the Burslem School of Art. The church was built on a raft foundation to avoid the danger of subsidence. The interior is Romanesque and includes items bought abroad by Fr Ryan. The body of the church consists of three bays, each covered by a dome.

Fr Christopher Miller, Parish Priest said:

 “We are extremely grateful for this generous grant from the National Churches Trust. The new crypt will be of great benefit to the Catholic community and for our outreach to the wider community in an area of above average social and economic deprivation.  We will be engaging with groups supporting children and families, young people, vulnerable adults and older people in our community.

“The development of the new community hub is also an important factor in the future sustainability of the Sacred Heart church, which is such an iconic landmark at the heart of the Potteries. We are delighted to announce that, thanks to the grant support we have received, work on the new crypt will begin on 10 September.”

SUFFOLK

St Peter and St Paul, Bardwell, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, IP31 1AH

Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich – Anglican – Grade I

St Peter and St Paul’s church, Bardwell, has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund repairs to medieval stained glass windows, slate roofing, and masonry.

The project

The project will tackle the repairs needed to conserve the church for future generations, so the local community and visitors can continue to enjoy the church and its heritage.

Work to take place includes replacing cracked stone mullions around the medieval stained glass; cleaning, repairing, and conserving the stained glass; decaying stones around windows which are leaking; leaking slates on the porch roof making it waterproof and preventing water damage; and replacing and repairing other decaying masonry and flint work.

The church

St Peter and St Paul’s church was built in the thirteenth century, though the chancel was rebuilt in the nineteenth century. One of its principle benefactors was Sir William de Berdewelle, who is depicted in a medieval stained glass window.

The church has many fine features, including a painted hammerbeam roof of national significance over the lofty nave; an imposing tower with a spirette; a porch with fine flintwork and carved statues; the remains of medieval wall paintings; and two medieval stained glass windows. It sits at the heart of the village and Bardwell Conservation Area.

The Bardwell Parochial Church Council said:      

“We are very grateful for this generous repair grant from the National Churches Trust which will ensure that this programme of important and urgent repair and conservation work can be carried out over the coming months. 

This will help to ensure that the unique and important heritage of this fine Grade I listed Building will be preserved for future generations to enjoy.”

SUSSEX

Brighton Unitarian Church, Brighton, East Sussex, BN1 1UF

Unitarian – Grade II

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

Brighton Unitarian Church has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help repair the classical portico entrance.

The project

The project helped by the National Churches Trust involves urgent structural repairs to the classical portico at the front of the church. The portico currently is at risk because of water penetrating into the columns. The columns are cracked vertically and horizontally, and the stucco also is in need of restoration.

The columns will be re-rendered and painted with breathable paint. Cracked and loose limestone paving slabs in the colonnade will also be replaced.

This city centre church will then be able to keep its doors open as a place of worship, heritage site, and diverse community hub.

The church

Brighton Unitarian Church was built in 1820. Architect Amon Henry Wilds designed the church in the style of the Temple of Theseus, with a classical portico, columns, and steps. It is part of Brighton’s Regency streetscape, built on land purchased from the Prince Regent in a prominent position opposite the Royal Pavilion and the Corn Exchange.

The church has been a place of worship for nearly 200 years, services are held every Sunday for a lively and engaged congregation.

Brighton Unitarian Church is used by the entire community. It welcomes support groups, including MA meetings, Death Cafes, Martlets Hospice and the Samaritans. Social activities include African drumming, mother and baby groups, pre-school music and arts, University of the Third Age tango classes, Qi Gong, yoga and meditation.  It also hosts a range of different choirs including the Brighton Gay Men’s Chorus.  

Jay Jones, from Brighton Unitarian Church said:

“We are grateful to the National Churches Trust for this significant contribution to our building restoration.  This funding will help us maintain our church as a place of worship and as a community resource. “

WEST MIDLANDS

Holy Trinity, Coventry, CV1 1LZ

Diocese of Coventry – Anglican – Grade I

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

Holy Trinity Church in Coventry has received a funding boost in the shape of an £8,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant for its project to install accessible toilets to make the church comfortable for all.  

The project

Holy Trinity Church will replace its inadequate toilets with a modern toilet area, with accessible and baby changing facilities.

The provision of new toilets will, it is hoped, lead to greater use of the building during the weekdays and the evening, and will be a venue for concerts and school visits.  The new facilities should also attract more visitors to the historic church with its intact charnel house, thirteenth century Doom Painting, and the Priest’s Rooms – the oldest rooms in Coventry.

The church

Holy Trinity Church dates from 1131. It is one of the largest medieval churches in England, with a spire of 72 metres high – it blew down in a gale in 1666 and was rebuilt. The church is 60 metres long and seats 600 people.

The Doom Painting, of the Last Judgement, sited above the main nave archway was painted between 1430 and 1440. It was discovered in 1831 after coats of whitewash were removed, but then varnished over, and cleaned and restored in 2004. It is considered one of the finest examples in Europe.

Holy Trinity is situated at the heart of the city centre within a conservation area, and has a high footfall of tourists and worshippers. It has adapted throughout its history to preserve the beauty and significance of the building, and reflect the changing nature of the community it serves.

Revd. Graeme Anderson, Vicar, Holy Trinity Coventry said:

 “We were very pleased to receive a boost to our project funding from the National Churches Trust and we hope to begin work on our new toilets soon. Our existing toilets are inadequate and inaccessible, so the provision of baby changing and disabled facilities will be a real benefit to the thousands of people who visit us each year. When the new toilets are in place we will advertise the church more widely to school parties and to concert organisers, so that many more people will come to see the beautiful interior of the building and to worship God.”

St Edmund King and Martyr, Dudley, West Midlands, DY1 4PS

Diocese of Worcester - Anglican – Grade II*

On Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register

St Edmund King and Martyr, Dudley has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund ongoing tower roof and rainwater goods repairs as part of a project to bring the church back to life and remove it from Historic England’s Heritage At Risk Register.  

The project

Currently St Edmund King and Martyr is in a poor state of repair. The church has boarded up windows on the tower, crumbling pointing and damaged masonry and the sides of the building are currently fenced off to prevent passers-by from being injured by falling debris.

The repairs to the tower are the first of three phases of repairs to the building which are necessary to make it structurally secure and weathertight, to remove the risk of damaged features falling on passers-by. The other two phases, which will follow as and when funds are available, are to the nave and then finally to the chancel. Hopefully all the repairs will be completed by 2022 which will enable St Edmunds to be removed from the Heritage At Risk register.

This project will address all these issues making the front of the building with the main entrance safe, greatly enhancing its appearance and at the same upgrading the toilet and kitchen facilities.

The church has already raised substantial sums of money and the grant from the National Churches Trust will secure the final piece of its funding jigsaw.

The church

St Edmund, known locally as 'Bottom Church' (to distinguish it from 'Top Church' St Thomas with St Luke to the south at the top of the hill) was originally a medieval church but it was completely rebuilt after its semi destruction in 1646 during the Civil War.

The present church was designed by Thomas Archer and is a classical building of red brick and stone dressings, and has an aisled nave and long chancel. The organ chamber and vestry on the south side was erected in 1849 and in the latter end of the 1800s there were a number of improvements when the interior furnishings were considerably changed but much of the woodwork is of high quality. Today the church is of the Anglo-Catholic tradition. 

Jon Harcourt, warden, said:

“Without the help from the our friends at the National Churches Trust, the congregation would probably not have been able to achieve our aims for making the church fit for today and ready to meet other challenges of physical construction, realising that we leave a legacy for generations to come.”

WALES

CEREDIGION

St David, Blaenporth, Cardigan, SA43 2AP

Diocese of St Davids – Anglican – Grade II

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St David’s Church in Blaenporth, has received a funding boost in the shape of a £10,000 National Churches Trust Community Grant for its project to develop the interior as a community space, much needed as there is no other public building in the village.

The project

St David’s Church will reorder the interior of the church to create flexible community space, much needed as there is no other public building in the village. This includes removal of pews to create a less restrictive space, installation of toilets, improvements to the kitchen, and connection to the mains water supply. Currently water has to be carried into the church every week. The heating and lighting will also be upgraded so they are more efficient.

The church will be able to offer activities for groups of all ages, reaching out to the elderly and isolated, and also young families as there is no public play area for children in the village. IT facilities will also provide opportunities to upskill members of the community.  

The church

Dedicated to the Celtic saint St David, there has been a religious site at Blaenporth since before 1066. The first building would have been made of wood, wattle, and plaster. There are close links to Gruffydd ap Rhys in the twelfth century.

The present building is from 1865, a Victorian Grade II listed building. It is a very good example of the work of RJ Withers. Alban Thomas, curate here from 1722-1740, was the author of one of the first books to be published by the first permanent printed press in Wales, at Adpar, Newcastle Emlyn. He appears in the Dictionary of Welsh Biography

The church is on the pilgrimage trail to St David’s Cathedral.

NORTHERN IRELAND

ANTRIM

Christ Church, Derriaghy, Lisburn, Co. Antrim, BT28 3SQ

Diocese of Connor – Anglican – Grade A

Christ Church, Derriaghy, has received a funding boost in the shape of a £20,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant to help fund vital repairs to their landmark spire.  

The project

The project helped by the National Churches Trust will repair the spire, a prominent feature on this Grade A listed building. Significant weather damage and corrosion has resulted in the crumbling of stone work in the spire. Iron elements have rusted and expanded, fracturing the masonry. Falling masonry is currently potential hazard. Without the work, this iconic building would have to close.

The project will dismantle, repair, and replace the stonework and ironwork to secure the structural integrity of the spire, bell tower, and gable. The parish and wider community are very supportive of the work, which will help to engage a wider audience with the heritage of the church.

The church

Christ Church was built in 1872, on a site where there has been a church since the thirteenth century. It is a classic example of the architectural work of Gillespie and Welland.

It is described by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency as ‘one of the most striking churches in Northern Ireland… [with] the distinctive steeple and the crow stepped gable...the local landscape and the idyllic setting makes the church of particular importance.’

Robert Stinson, Member of Select Vestry, said:

 “The parishioners of Christ Church Derriaghy greatly appreciate the support given byThe National Churches Trust which will enable them to begin work on replacing the church spire which has been a distinct feature of this place of worship since it was built in 1872. This support has created a confidence that will see us through the project and we look forward to its completion and having a church that will remain open for worship for another hundred years or more.”

Other grants awarded

Four churches receive National Churches Trust Project Development Grants, supporting churches to become more sustainable through the diagnosis of issues and the development applications to large church heritage funders such as the Heritage Lottery Fund.  18 churches receive National Churches Trust Maintenance Grants, run in partnership with the Pilgrim Trust, to act on small, urgent maintenance issues and repairs.  In addition, 14 churches receive National Churches Trust Partnership Grants for urgent repair projects, awarded on the recommendation of local church trusts in England, Wales and Scotland. See the full list of churches receiving Project Development, Maintenance and Partnership Grants.