St Andrew's Ufford 2014

Transfer to the Churches Conservation Trust

Ufford ChurchReaders will be aware that St.Andrew’s church was officially closed in January 2011. After the closure the Church Commissioners failed to find anyone to lease or use it and so its future was uncertain.

However, the Commissioners eventually decided to submit St.Andrew’s as one of six churches for consideration for adoption by the Churches Conservation Trust, the national charity protecting historic churches at risk across England.

The Trust chose St.Andrew’s for adoption and on the 3rd October it became the 346th church in its estate. On Saturday 4th October the CCT organised an event in the church which included the formal handing over of keys from the Archdeacon of Oakham, the Venerable Gordon Steele, representing Peterborough Diocese, to Peter Aiers, representing the Trust. A sizeable audience then had a presentation from CCT staff members outlining their plans.
The first priority of the CCT is to ensure that the church is brought back into a good state of repair and the historic fabric and its contents are no longer at risk and that the church is safe for the public to use and enjoy.  

St.Andrew’s will soon undergo a significant programme of repairs costing in the region of £500,000. Specifically this will include :

•    The re-roofing of the Collyweston slate and lead roofs
•    Complete overhaul of the rainwater goods
•    Conservation of hatchments and monuments
•    Masonry repairs and re-pointing mostly to parapets, copings and window traceries
•    Repairs to decayed timberwork
•    Repairs to stained glass and other glazing and provision of protective window guards
•    Installation of a roof alarm to protect the lead
•    Repairs to the bell installation
•    Electrical work and re-wiring, including an overhaul of the heating system

It is anticipated that work will start in November and it will be necessary to close the church for a number of months. However, the Trust is planning a series of events during which the site will be open to the public and visitors will be able to see vital conservation work taking place and meet the skilled craftsmen and conservators in action. The Trust is also planning to provide learning opportunities for local schools and colleges. Details will be announced shortly.

The adoption of the church by the Trust opens the opportunity for 6 Sunday services per year and as many events in between as desired. The Trust will be working with local representatives to establish a local Friends Group to develop and support the church’s use.

Keith Lievesley, Secretary
Barnack with Ufford Parochial Church Council
(Sketch by kind permission of Mr Benson)