Press Release from The National Churches Trust

DATE  11 December 2019

Christmas funding boost for St James church, Leckhampstead

A much-loved Berkshire church is to share in a £523,000 funding payout from the National Churches Trust. 

A £15,000 National Churches Trust Cornerstone Grant will help fund roof repairs and remedy structural movement at the Grade II* listed St James church, Leckhampstead, making the church watertight and preserving its historic fabric. The church is currently on the Historic England ‘At Risk Register’.

Broadcaster and journalist Huw Edwards, Vice President of The National Churches Trust, said:

“The UK’s historic churches and chapels are a vital part of our national heritage. But to survive, many need to carry out urgent repairs and install modern facilities. The cost of this work is far beyond what most congregations can pay for themselves.”

“I’m delighted that the St James church, Leckhampstead, is being helped with a £15,000 National Churches Trust Cornerstone Grant. The work on the roof and walls will secure the future of this historic building for future generations and help remove it from the Historic England ‘At Risk Register’.

63 churches and chapels in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will benefit from the latest grants from the National Churches Trust, the charity supporting church buildings of all Christian denominations across the UK.

In 2019, the Trust distributed over £1.2 million to help churches and chapels tackle urgent repairs, maintenance work and install modern facilities such as kitchens and toilets.

A wide range of grants from the Nation al Churches Trust will be available to help places of worship in 2020 and full details can be found at http://www.nationalchurchestrust.org/grants

The church

St James’s church is in the North Wessex Downs and is located in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The present building was designed in brick and flint by Samuel Sanders Teulon, whose style was a High Victorian style known as ‘Modern Gothic’. The first historic record of a church dates from 815AD as Leckhamstede and later Lecanestede in the Domesday Book 12th Century. A Norman font installed in St Edmund’s church, was moved to St James in 1859 -1860.  St James also contains priceless artefacts such as an 11th Century font, a 14th  Century bell, a Jacobean pulpit and Georgian altar rails.

The project

The project will help fund urgent roof repairs and remedy structural movement of the roof and church walls.

Ian Brown and Michelle Martin, Churchwardens at St James’s said:

“We are thrilled to receive this grant as it completes out fundraising project and enables us to commence the works in March next year.  We are so grateful for the National Churches Trus ‘s support which will secure the future of our beautiful church.”

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