Sunday, 27 September 2020

19th century Celtic cross returned to church after makeover

A METAL Celtic cross that weighs more than 100 kilos has been returned to the roof

A METAL Celtic cross that weighs more than 100 kilos has been returned to the roof of St Margaret’s Church in Mapledurham after being refurbished.

The church received a grant of £13,000 from the Government’s Listed Places of Worship Roof Repair Fund to supplement the cost of urgent repairs to the roof of the tower and of the nave of the Grade I listed building.

The project, which was directed and supervised by architect Robin Nugent, included the refurbishment of the cross and the replacement of the lead flashing surrounding it and the thick oak stay supporting it.

It is thought the cross had been in position since 1863 when the Victorian architect William Butterfield made extensive repairs and alterations to the church on behalf of the vicar, Rev Edward Coleridge, a nephew of the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

The work on the roof and on the cross was carried out by Stone Technical Services Group, of Darlington, which has also carried out remedial work on St Paul’s Cathedral and on the Westminster Abbey Chapter House.

The cross had to be taken to the company’s workshop in County Durham.

Peter Stratton, a churchwarden at St Margaret’s, who supervised the work on behalf of the parish, said: “The cross is a clear sign of our Christian fellowship here and will be appreciated by all who visit this peaceful location in a beautiful part of South Oxfordshire.

“St Margaret’s is one of three churches in the parish of Caversham, Thameside and Mapledurham and has been a site of Christian worship for nearly 1,000 years.”

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