Sixteen churches from across Yorkshire are celebrating this month after being awarded over £47,000 from Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust (YHCT) for essential repairs, conservation and maintenance works.
The future of many churches is under threat due to crumbling roofs, windows and stonework. The YHCT works to ensure these places of worship are kept in good repair, recognising the contribution they make to society at large and the support they provide to local communities, especially during the current Covid crisis.
Funding was awarded to churches from all over Yorkshire, from a small rural church at Chopgate, near Helmsley, offering a service once a month to Cemetery Road Baptist church in inner city Sheffield, sharing its space with two diverse congregations. Funding ranged from £600 to ensure stonework repairs and pointing work could take place at St Nicholas, North Newbald, to a contribution towards a £192,000 glazing and masonry repairs project at St Oswald’s Church, Fulford.
St Thomas’ Church in Sheffield received £3,500 for urgent roof and fabric repairs to shore up the building for the winter. Water has been leaking into the building, leading to severe damp and areas of dangerous falling plaster.
Originally dating back to 1876, St Thomas’, Wincobank is now a focal point of community life. Ordinarily, the church hosts a number of regular events for the local community including a weekly tea and toast drop in, nearly new sales, a monthly men’s breakfast, barn dances, pancake parties and a Christmas Fayre.
St Margaret’s Church at Brightside in Sheffield shares a vicar with St Thomas’ and was also awarded £3,500 from the Trust for fabric repairs, which again were needed to keep the building watertight over the winter.
The Revd Philip Warman, Vicar at St Thomas and St Margaret’s said:
“Both St Thomas’ and St Margaret’s are hubs of community life and we are delighted to have received this funding from the YHCT. It will help ensure we are able to carry out the essential repairs to both churches and be ready to offer a full range of activities for the local community when it is safe to do so.”
Tom Ramsden, Chairman of the Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust, said:
“The impact of lockdown has had a devastating effect on our local churches. Many have been unable to run any services or fundraising events and some have been closed up completely. Now, more than ever, these precious places of worship need our support.”
The full list of churches receiving grants can be found at https://www.yhct.org.uk/news/recent-grant-awards/
You can become a Friend of the Trust and help support local places of worship from as little as £35 per year. For more details visit www.yhct.org.uk.