They came with mops and buckets and the will to save a treasured piece of south Lincolnshire’s heritage – and now a beautiful church in Algarkirk has received a £175,000 lifeline.
In 2010, St Peter and St Paul Church faced closure, unless action was taken to repair and preserve the structureAlgarkirk Major Project Group (AMPG) was formed two years ago, with the aim of putting together a successful plan to re-establish the church as a centre for its own community and a beacon of excellence for heritage-lovers everywhere.
The £175,000 development Heritage Lottery grant is the first step in a £1.8 million project designed to repair this important building; and conserve and interpret its scheme of Victorian stained glass and interior decoration, which is a prime example of Gothic revival in the country.
AMPG have been supported by the parish priest, Father Gary Morgan and the Church Buildings Department of the Diocese of Lincoln, as well as the village community.
Father Gary said: “The church used to be a focus for village life, and now it is hoped that, thanks to the vision and hard work of the project group, it can become so again, not just as a place of worship - which it will always be - but also as a centre of heritage, learning, and community enjoyment.
“Algarkirk has become a fragmented community geographically. We hope this development will help draw everyone together because without the support of our community we cannot succeed.”
l The Grade I listed building is a large Fenland church, the earliest parts of which date from the late 12th century, with phases of development following in 13th, 14th, and late 15th centuries. Between 1850 and 1854 the church was extensively restored and, later, a substantial scheme of stained glass windows was installed.