Colonsay Parish Church

 

Colonsay Parish Church is a charming white-harled kirk on the island of Colonsay, built in 1802 to the design of architect Michael Carmichael. Features include a 'birdcage' belfry which crowns a classical pediment above the semi-circular vestry, the pediment being enhanced by a 'blind' oculus. Four round-headed Georgian windows make for a well-lit interior which is graced by an attractive combed wooden ceiling. Colonsay has a population of 124.  The parish church is a key building on the island. If the belfry is not repaired, the building will have to be closed for safety which would have a significant adverse effect on such a tight-knit community. The belfry is in a parlous state and work is urgent. The weather on Colonsay is such that the belfry cannot be left exposed in its current condition.  Works required: dismantle, restore and reinstate stone belfry and bell; replace cast-iron gutters to semi-circular vestry. The grant will help bridge the funding gap and enable repairs to take place.  See also our case study here.

Top tips from feedback:

- Have the correct final figure agreed from the start (you cannot increase it and maintain credibility).

- Keep careful records of who has been contacted, how, and when.

- Respond to all donations with a thank-you letter and update, and write again at the conclusion with a further thank-you and invitation to the "re-dedication" event.

- Produce an A5 leaflet with proper details of the appeal and a Gift-Aid form on the back.

- Use social media but also find a way to issue a carefully-worded "story" through a Press Agency, with some angle that is sufficiently intriguing to attract notice

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