Parishioners fight to save historic church
PUBLISHED: 11:00 09 December 2010
THE supporters of a historic church have warned that a lack of interest in the building could end up with it being lost to future generations.
Urgent repairs need to be carried out to the roof of St Michael’s Church in Brent Knoll but dwindling support from residents has made it harder to raise the £45,000 required.
Despite this, church committee members say they are hopeful they will raise the money needed to save the Grade I-listed building, parts of which date back to the 11th century.
The roof on the building’s south side, which was originally put up in 1877, is leaking, allowing rainwater to reach the timbers inside.
The church’s parishioners have been urging villagers to contribute a little towards the repair costs, but were left disappointed after a recent open day attracted only 30 people.
Any money raised for the church is to be matched by an unnamed donor, with £10,000 representing the first goal for organisers.
One of them, Tony Gilbert, said: “We’ve already raised £3,600 which is quite impressive considering it’s from quite a small number of people.
“I printed 540 pamphlets about the funds needed for the church and handed them out around the village, and we were hoping a small donation by many people would help raise the money.
“The money raised has largely come from the older generations of the village, from the pensioners, and although that’s fewer people than we’d hoped it’s a good start on the money we need to raise.
“When there was the proposal to put up the wind turbines all the villagers came together and raised lots of money.
“Now there’s something in the village which we need everyone to come together to save, there’s a general level of apathy.
“Like many churches across the area and the country, St Michael’s is seriously under threat unless we can find the money. But we’re confident we’ll be able to.”
Anyone who wants to make a donation can contact Mr