St Edburgha’s Church, parts of which date back over 800 years, making it one of the oldest churches in the Midlands has received initial support* of £29,200 from the Heritage Lottery Fund for Roof Repairs and creation of a Permanent Community Exhibition and Learning Space.
The church roof will be completely retiled and insulated along with the refurbishment of rainwater goods and drainage. This will help conserve an important piece of Birmingham’s and Britain’s heritage.
A further exciting aspect of the project will be the creation of a new exhibition and community meeting area in the North Aisle. This will enable more extensive use of the church by schools and community groups. The new area will include information on Yardley and its church's place in history and increase the awareness of heritage and present-day community involvement. It will also provide a permanent home for the First World War “Still With Us" project based on the church war memorial and the stories of the lives and families in the local community. New interpretation and information boards will be placed in the church and a new children’s guide to the church will be devised.
The initial development funding of £29,200 will enable the PCC to appoint consultants to draw up their plans and enable it to apply for a second round grant of £169,600. This will allow the PCC to complete the project. If the second round application is successful work will start in the spring of 2019.
The congregation and PCC are delighted with the award made possible by the National Lottery players. The Vicar, Rev Bill Sands expressed his joy with the award and said: “Yardley has had a church at the centre of the local community for a thousand years and this award will safeguard the church and its place in the community for generations to come.” He thanked the many people from the church and the wider community who have by their hard work, support, and generosity helped over the years with the restoration project. He also thanked the Heritage Lottery Fund and the lottery players for their help in making these plans possible.
The Restoration Project group are now planning for the appointment of volunteers to assist in bringing about this exciting scheme. They are launching a “Be a Part of It“ campaign to recruit volunteers of all ages from the local community to help with this project. Activities will include recruiting visitor guides, school visits to view conservation works and staffing additional open days for the church.
Our aim will be encapsulated by our mission statement “Conserving the Past - looking to the Future“