October 23rd, 2016

Historic Stoneleigh church to be fixed thanks to lottery funding

Historic Stoneleigh church to be fixed thanks to lottery funding Historic Stoneleigh church to be fixed thanks to lottery funding
Photo by James Cooper. (s)

THE CRUMBLING roof of an historic church in Stoneleigh is set to be repaired thanks to lottery funding.

St Mary the Virgin Church has received a £211,000 boost from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

The cash will be used to help fix the broken roof and stonework on the grade I-listed church as well as promoting heritage with the total cost of the project estimated to be in the region of £330,000.

People have been worshipping on the site for more than 700 years while there was also a mention of two priests at Stoneleigh in the Domesday Survey of 1086.

The earliest sandstone structure of the church dates from the 12th century and the building contains a number of historic embroideries and tapestry works.

There are also plans to revamp the church website to better represent the heritage of the church and its role within the community.

Churchwarden Sarah Ballinger said: “We are delighted the Heritage Lottery Fund has given us this support.

“This money will not only enable us to make the building watertight and safe but will help us to better inform our visitors and provide a space for the community to use.

“We can now guarantee it will be there for future generation to enjoy.”

Vanessa Harbar, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund West Midlands, was pleased to support the project.

She added: “This award to St Mary the Virgin will ensure essential repairs are carried out, and allow visitors and local people to get involved and learn about the fascinating stories and heritage of the building, which has served the community since the 12th century.”

The renovation project will begin on Monday and is expected to last around six months. Church services will be held at other buildings in the village – including the village hall and Stoneleigh Village Club – while the works are carried out.

Visit www.stoneleighchurch.co.uk for further information.