The rewarding journey at Barton Turf
A few months ago you probably noticed in the press, and on local radio that Barton Turf Church was awarded an HLF grant.
Although this is great news, I felt that you, the PCC member, might be interested to know how they went about getting the grant.
I met with Barbara Pilcher and Michael Brandon-Jones at the church, and started by asking them how did this journey start? They told me that like most projects it started with the quinquennial report, that identified the fact that the roof needed repairing on the north aisle. Barbara had fortunately attended a workshop run by the Diocese, on grant applications, three years ago. They also enlisted the help of one of the Diocese’s ambassadors, Ken Grapes, who helped them with their application.
They found that the application came in two parts:
With the application being with the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), the application needed a heritage element. Barton Turf church has a magnificent rood screen, and their application has involved them planning to write a children’s guide (to involve local schools), a guide explaining the history of the screen, and the production of informative displays throughout the church.
HLF give quite clear criteria that you have to fulfil:
- Quotes from three separate architects
- DAC approval before delivery of project
- Minutes from PCC showing agreement
- Detailed activity plan and costs
- Display/log of development as project proceeds
On top of the grant from HLF, the church has had to apply to other trusts to raise the final tranche of money. HLF have supported them throughout the application. A case worker was appointed at Stage 1, and they were invited, with their very supportive architect, to HLF’s Cambridge office. I asked Barbara if anything had been difficult, and she told me that filling the forms in was not particularly difficult, but for the second stage very repetitive. She also said that their architect had been very good at supplying information to help her fill in the forms, so however daunting they were, she never felt on her own. Another problem has been the fact that no work could take place between March 30 and September 15, because of the bats.
I fear that there are a lot of Quinquennial reports across the Diocese that we should be sorting out, so please be bold, take the bull by the horns, and do something about it today. Both Geoff and I are here to help you, and we have ambassadors to help as well.
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