Today is Sunday, May 22, 2022

Ambitious All Saints' church projects given permission to start

Work to repair and improve All Saints' church can now begin after the National Lottery Heritage Fund – which awarded a the project a grant of nearly £500,000 last year – has given permission to start.

The permission means that the budgets and plans for the project – overseen by the town's PCC and the Friends of All Saints' – have been approved, so that professional services can now be paid for to carry out work including the renovation of the 97ft-high Tudor tower and the construction of an extension with an equal-acess toilet and kitchenette. Local building contractors will be used where possible to maintain the project's environmental responsibilities and adverts will appear soon inviting tenders.

The project also includes:

  • Being inclusive, removing barriers and reaching new audiences
  • Responding to environmental issues and promoting sustainability
  • Interpreting both the heritage of the ancient building and natural environment, alongside the maritime and community histories
  • Appointing an Activity Co-ordinator to engage a wider range of people in the heritage of the church and churchyard
  • Reaching out to pupils, parents & carers with educational activities
  • Recruiting more volunteers and offering training to them

The Lottery grant covers around two-thirds of the money required for the project and fund-raising is continuing. Last month the Bishop Radford Trust gave £1,000 and a sale of snowdrops, tea and cake by the Holy Mowers – local volunteers who maintain the churchyard – raised £340. Applications for funds are being considered by the Friends of Essex Churches Trust and also by Cornerstone, the National Churches Trust/Pilgrim Trust).

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