St George the Martyr with St Alphege and St Jude
The building is bounded on three sides by major roads, with the road on the north side now pedestrianised. The current building is on a site which has been a place of Christian worship since at least the 12th century. The earliest known record of the church is for the year 1122. The present building is brick built of classical design with Portland stone pediments, string courses and dressings, designed by John Price (1735) with the interior altered by Hedger (1808). The present ornate ceiling by Basil Champneys (1897) was repaired & restored by Thomas Ford (1951) following war damage. In 2005, the church closed for substantial structural repairs during which the crypt and vaults were transformed into a parish centre. Accommodation comprises a porch and tower incorporating belfry chambers, vestry, upper rooms and stairs, the nave and aisles with upper galleries along the south, west and north sides, the chancel with adjacent stair/lift/vestry rooms. The crypt area includes lobbies, two large meeting rooms, office, toilets, kitchen, boiler, stores and ducts/risers.The church is known for its part in Charles Dickens's Little Dorrit and has a tribute to the title character in the east window.
The grant will help fund repairs to stonework and gutters, install teapoint facilities in the north-west porch, install glass doors inside the main entrance, and create space for a community cafe.
Top tips from completed project feedback:
- Have a detailed cash flow set out and manage reserves for the worst case scenario
- Work closely with the contractor team so you have early heads up of issues
- Prepare for things to take longer than you think!