St Edmund King and Martyr
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.
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 tower repairs are the first of three phases to the building which are necessary to make it secure and weathertight, and 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 chancel. Hopefully all 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.
Top tips from completed project feedback:
Think beyond the dates promised - and have plenty of patience