Grade I listed ‘at risk’ church receives HLF grant
— 27 Nov 2018 by Martin Sturley-Hayes
Jonathan Rhind Architects working with the Parochial Church Council of St Margaret’s Church in Northam has been successful in their application for stage 2 Heritage Lottery Funding to enable urgent repairs to the roof of the Grade I listed building.
The existing roof has come to the end of its life with defective slating allowing significant water penetration through ceilings into the interior.
The current roof structure has historical interest as the Victorians re-roofed the church integrating earlier medieval timbers – conservation rather than complete replacement.
However, the Victorian detailing was not ideal, and the lath and plaster ceiling was fixed directly to the underside of the slating battens. Water penetration and the physical impacts of essential slate repairs has resulted in large areas of ceiling plaster falling away.
The HLF grant will enable repairs and improvements to the roofs and ceilings to provide improved spaces for users to enjoy the building.
The repair project will incorporate improvements to community access and use – including a new website, and the installation of a camera and screen to allow visitors and school groups to view bell ringing which is carried out high up on the tower, currently out of view.
The Church, has been on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register since 2014, and the PCC have been fundraising for a number of years for these essential works.
Securing HLF funding for the repairs will also enable numerous public activities including research projects, a college art project to decorate site hoardings, presentations by Delabole slate and sponsor a slate, monument, memorial and ceiling recording activities for local schools
The main contractor, Jamie Brown Roofing, are anticipating a February 2019 start and will be working closely with us and consultants including ecologists, structural engineers and archaeologists.
Jonathan Rhind Architects are delighted to have been involved in securing funding for the project and to be collaborating with the PCC, contractors and consultants to help conserve the historic Church for existing and future generations to enjoy.