January 8, 2018
This new year brings an £80,000 funding boost for projects in local churches thanks to a grants award by the Gloucestershire Historic Churches Trust (GHCT).
The grants aim to keep churches in a good state of repair so that they can be used and enjoyed but their local communities today and in the future.
GHCT Chairman Nick Talbot Rice said: “Maintaining these buildings, which are such an integral part of our visual and historic landscape, is usually very expensive and this often presents a major challenge for congregations. GHCT is pleased to be able to support churches with their fundraising.”
The largest grants of £10,000 each were promised to St Mary, Fretherne and Saints Mary, Peter and Paul in Westbury on Seven. Both churches need expensive works to their towers and spires, and their congregations face a mammoth effort to raise the required funds.
St Catharine’s church in Gloucester (pictured below) has received £5500 towards reordering the chancel area of the church. This busy city church regularly welcomes 150 people to services, and is also used by local schools and the wider community. “Services often feature worship bands and interactive dance or drama elements, and we regularly welcome choirs and local school music productions”, explains PCC member Phil King. “Currently they have to squeeze into a small space around the choir stalls. Our plan is to create a large dais area at the front of the church which will open up that space to be more suitable for both regular church worship and community events.”
St Peter’s Church in Lawrence Weston is keen to encourage visitors to the building, and develop closer connections with the local community. The first step towards this is reducing the height of the perimeter wall, for which GHCT has contributed £1000. Plans are also in place to make a café corner at the back of the church.
For full details of the grants awarded visit our Grants page