In the Summer of 2019 the Church had its quinquennial (5 yearly) inspection. The inspection identified a number of immediate repairs that were needed. These included minor slate roof repairs, repointing and repairing the keystone above the main door. These works were completed in the second part of 2020. The cost, of around £8,000 was paid from the Churches existing General Fund
The report also identified a second stage of works, namely repairing and renewing the high level stone dressings, mouldings and balusters that make our Church such an attractive and distinctive looking building. The recommended time scale for these works was put at 18 months – 2 years, at an estimated cost of £107,000.
We need to put in place a programme for these repairs now or it is likely that in a few years’ time we will be in a position where we will have to find and spend even more money as the stonework deteriorates further and more problems emerge.
The report also recommended that further inspection of the Churchyard wall should be undertaken. A firm of structural Engineers were appointed and their report of March 2020 highlighted that the work required was far more extensive and more urgent than originally thought. There are a number of sections of the wall that are in danger of collapse, especially along the Fox Hollies Road elevation. The estimated cost of rectifying the situation is estimated at £75,000
Taken together the combined sum of £182,000 far exceeds the Churches available funds. It was originally thought that we would have to carry out the Wall repairs in two parts, only adding to the expense. However, following an appeal to Church Members in November 2020 many generous donations were received and we find ourselves able to do all of the works in one stage. This alone is estimated to save approximately £5,000.
At the same time applications were made to various grant giving organisations and this remains an ongoing project. Unfortunately to date we have met with limited success from these sources.
Whilst we are confident of being able to commission the repairs to the Church Yard Wall, this will exhaust all of our available funding. As a result we are planning for this Autumn to expand our appeal to members of the local community, set up a Crowd Funding platform, as well as continuing our approaches to grant givers as potential new sources are identified.