Tuesday, 15 June 2021

St Mary’s refit goes into its second phase

THE NEXT phase of a £350,000 project to improve St Mary’s Church in Wargrave will begin next month.

THE NEXT phase of a £350,000 project to improve St Mary’s Church in Wargrave will begin next month.

A new heating system has already been installed, due to the previous equipment not being able to heat the building to more than 13C when the outside temperature falls to zero.

The relocation of the font and the creation of a baptistry crèche will bring the total cost of internal work to around £150,000.

Churchwarden Peter Mayes said: “The first stage of the overall programme was completed in the May to July timeframe when pews in the west end of the nave were removed and a new heating system installed.

“This afforded us a large area for social events and improved the comfort level within the building by a significant degree. These moves were heartily welcomed by the congregation.”

The second part of the programme has been revised due to a quotation received by architect Robin Nugent.

Initially the plan was to build a 150 sq m extension to the west wing of the church, to house three rooms plus toilets and storage space.

But the estimated cost of £200,000 rose to £430,000 excluding VAT, prompting a rethink.

The revised plan, which has been approved by the Parochial Church Council, will be a cabin-style building to be located in the graveyard.

It will provide two meeting rooms measuring 28 sq m each, storage cupboards and toilets.

The cabin, which will be an oak-framed building with a tiled roof, has received formal approval from English Heritage.

A fundraising plan for the scheme, which is named the St Mary’s 21C project, is yet to be announced.

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