Opening the doors to the community
The church and church hall are currently separated by closed doors and a toilet block. This means that community groups who regularly use the church halls, never get to see inside or enter the church itself.
Guided by their church members, architects and planners the project steering group aim to open up and link the two spaces, making them more accessible for users.
The ‘Opening the Doors’ development steering group stated: “We see a need to unify, to develop and to expand the church premises to address a number of endemic problems with the current suite of buildings in order to enable our growth and future Mission plans. … The new development will make it easier to invite people to church, to offer hospitality and it will open up the worship area to all who use the premises.”
The new building design will link the existing church and church halls through the provision of a new entrance with glazed walls, while the church floors will all be realigned to one level. A thermal upgrade and improved heating and lighting systems throughout the whole complex, improved office areas with independent access, reconfigured toilets, a small hall and a kitchen are planned for the project.
The group continued: “Our current community outreach is thriving. Whilst much of this work is carried out off church premises, with our ecumenical partners, it has massively improved community relationships. People view the church in a different light and are now much more willing to accept invitations to church events. Opening up our building, making it more welcoming and accessible will further enhance these opportunities to engage, witness and share.”