We are delighted that we have now made a start on Phase 1 of our upgrading project, which has been in discussion for some years…
Our beautiful Church was consecrated on 2nd November 1957 and in celebration of its 60th anniversary back in 2017, the Select Vestry (the group which is responsible for the fabric and finance of the church) made the decision to carry out a significant refurbishment project of the Church building. This will help ensure that it is both an attractive and a functional worship centre in the years to come and was agreed following much discussion, pre–planning and prayer.
The Select Vestry has identified several practical reasons for doing this now:
– As a growing Church, St John’s needs to be able to provide suitable accommodation for a wide range of worship, ministry and other supporting groups and services. The 2017 Quinquennial Inspection report has identified several shortcomings in our Church building, including problems relating to roofing, water ingress, accessibility and décor.
– In addition, our Church building has an issue with Visibility – people don’t realise we’re here! Our outward physical profile is not as welcoming as the actual people within the St John’s family.
– Typically (during non–Covid–19 impacted times), our Church supports three services with three rather different congregations. In order to grow relationships between our services and foster more of a sense of being One Church Family, we need to be able to accommodate all services within our Church building.
– As we continue to develop our worship and discipleship and step up our outreach and community engagement programmes, we need to improve our capabilities by increasing the Functionality of our Church building.
We believe refurbishment work is now essential to ensure that our place of worship will be available to support God’s work in an appropriate manner into the foreseeable future.
– Improve Visibility – by building a new front entrance foyer: provides a more welcoming and inviting front aspect and complements existing Church architecture.
– Encourage a One Church Family ethos – by creating both a new welcome/social area (back of Church) and creating space for worship group (front of Church): allows for a greater diversity of worship styles and mixing; facilitates increased opportunity for welcome and hospitality; creates a unique ‘Room of Remembrance’; creates space for a WC near the front entrance.
– Increase Functionality of our Church building – by repairing flat roof, creating additional rooms, upgrading kitchen & toilet facilities, and improving accessibility: provides additional worship area, including a chapel for more intimate, reflective worship; provides tailored space potentially for youth, family and other purposes; provides more options for current and additional programmes.
Our Consultation and Process
Under the auspices of the Select Vestry, the Rector (assisted by Brian Jeffers, our architectural consultant) convened open consultation meetings following our Anniversary celebrations in 2017.
Two meetings were held to ensure that as many members of the congregation as possible were able to attend, learn more about the refurbishment concept and make comments accordingly. The meetings were attended by 42 members of the Congregation (across both dates). This perhaps represents approximately 40% of the active Congregation at that time. Feedback has been incorporated into the detailed plans of the scheme.
A presentation of the plans has also been erected at the back of church as another layer of communication.
Since this time, we have been in ongoing discussions with the Council Planners, Surveyors and Builders – with some changes having to be made to our plans, as agreed by the Select Vestry – and we have now begun Phase 1 of the work and hope to continue onto Phase 2 imminently once full funding is realised.
If you have any other queries relating to this summary or the accompanying plans, or would like to help in any way, please get in touch with Rev Ross Wilson using the contact details below.Contact us