St Peter’s Church receives global support

The damage to the roof at St Peter's Church, Heysham.
The damage to the roof at St Peter's Church, Heysham.
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Donations from as far as Australia have been coming in to help repair the roof at Heysham’s St Peter’s Church.

The roof on the Grade 1 listed building has been deteriorating for nearly 20 years.

Heysham's St Peter's Church.

Heysham's St Peter's Church.

However the status of the building makes it impossible to replace the slates with modern materials.

This has prompted the fundraising team, made up from the local community, to ask for donations to help repair the 160 year old roof.

Sylvia Welberry, Parish Secretary, said: “We get cheques coming through all the time.

“Some months we have had £400 sent in and others we have had £80, somebody who lives away in Australia sent us something and New Zealand, people have a connection to the church.”

The church, which closed on Sunday, September 14, will have its roof taken off in October this year. The volunteers have raised £40,000 of their £80,000 target already to fix the roof.

Robert Kitchen, chairman of the volunteers at the church, said: “We are only a small group and I am confident the roof will be completed in time.”

Stones from the church hall are being used to replace some of the existing slates which are currently sliding off.

Mrs Welberry said: “The roof is slowly sliding off, the pegs inside are going. Some of the slates are fracturing but a lot of them are still good.

“The roof needs to be taken off completely to remove the wood found underneath which is crumbling away due to the rain leaking through.”

Work is expected to last nine months and the team hope the repairs are done quickly in order to cater for bookings next year.

Mrs Welberry said: “We are hoping to raise as much money as possible, we have got weddings booked for June next year so we are hoping to get it finished. I am 
lying awake at night chewing at my fingernails. We can’t leave something like this it is our responsibilty we just have to deal with it.”

The repairs to the church, which is reported to be the oldest in the North West, are estimated to cost around £250,000 including repairs to the church hall.

The team are grateful for the help received so far from the community.

Mrs Welberry said: “We have done really well and thanks goes to everybody who has supported us.”