2008 Extension

Building project 2006-8 [Scroll down for photographs]

For several years the church, its organisations and community user-groups struggled to provide a friendly welcome despite inadequate toilet facilities, no proper disabled toilet or baby-changing facilities, an inadequate kitchen and no servery.

In 2006, members resolved to tackle the problem. Many suggestions were received and a development team was set up to distil them into an outline scheme. Martin Russell, RIBA, BSc(Hons), Dipl. Arch, was appointed as our architect and worked with the team from the autumn of 2006. Planning permission for the scheme was obtained in July 2007. Dr Chris Wakeling also supported us throughout the process of obtaining Listed Building Consent.

Meanwhile, members and friends of the church dug deep into their pockets to provide the large amount of capital needed to pay for the work. At the same time, applications were made to various funding bodies for grants, mostly on the basis of the extensive use of our premises by the wider community. Our main contractors, R & W Harrison, started work in April 2008 and handed the project over to us during October 2008.

The building scheme

There was a space between the rear of the church and the Small Hall in the car park. This became the new kitchen , with a hatch into the Small Hall, with a store behind. The nearby outside toilets were demolished and new toilets built. The gap between the new kitchen and toilets became an internal corridor, bringing the old back door out towards a new entrance and reception area in the corner of the car park. The old kitchen became a toilet for disabled users and for baby-changing.

Alongside this, we refurbished the Coffee Bar to provide a more suitable ambience for Nite-Lite, our Friday late night tea and coffee service, and The Vine, Tuesday student bistro.