***LATEST NEWS UPDATE***
Development Update July 2014
Grants for Places of Worship
The May Development update contained the fantastic news that we had been successful with our application to the Heritage Lottery Fund/Historic Scotland for our ‘Building for the Community’ project. Funding of £48,600 was awarded to help the church progress our plans during the “Development phase” with the remainder of the £250,000 released during the “Delivery or construction phase”.
The timescale for the Development phase is likely to take 42 weeks from “Permission to Start” (which was granted on 2nd June) through to the construction starting date. So, we are currently estimating that construction work for both the HLF works and the main project (excluding the new build community annex) will commence late May/early June 2015.
We are grateful for the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and Historic Scotland and although pushing back the start-date to 2015 may be disappointing to some, it is a small price to pay for successfully securing this funding. Moreover the level of expertise that will be brought to the renovation works by taking a ‘conservation’ approach to the improvement to our Listed Building, will further enhance the quality and lasting integrity of the improvement we will make to our building.
The Church of Scotland through the CARTA Committee (Church Art and Architecture) will also provide valuable support and input on matters to do with the appropriate reordering of the sanctuary. We have already had a very successful meeting with CARTA representatives on 6 May when they were impressed with the well thought out and considered planning which had been undertaken and the attempts to make the building fit for mission, worship and outreach.
In April we set a challenge to the congregation, hall users and others to raise as much money as possible in the three months to June with the incentive being an offer from an individual to match fund what was raised up to £50,000.
We surpassed this total with the sum raised of £74,670 bringing the total raised to date of £1,098,359.
It has been a tremendous effort by the whole congregation especially starting from a zero bank balance to be sitting now, three and a half years later, with over £1 million in available funds.
As things stand, based on estimates, we might need a further £120,000 to start construction by May/June 2015. This seems a lot. However, we believe that the estimated figures for the cost of the required work may come down as we put the work to tender. Moreover the Trust team has restarted the work involved in identifying and applying to suitable trusts.
Exciting times are ahead. However for now, as we look to the ongoing work and activities of the church, we have a working timetable in place that will see us through to the start of construction in May/ June 2015. Meanwhile the organisations and users of the Church halls can plan for the 2014-15 Session knowing that the usual accommodation is available to them. In the months ahead let us keep up the good work; sharing together the sense that collectively we are all part of making this vision for our buildings a reality in the very near future.