“The belfry at the top of the tower has been roofless for many years,” explained Corton Parish Churchwarden Michael Soanes, “Our architect now tells us that water is seeping into the masonry and unless this is stopped, the tower will ‘quickly fall into a perilous state.’ The church, south of Great Yarmouth, is close to a cliff and the tower is open to the elements.
“The best solution to this problem is to replace the missing roof and bell louvres, thus making the tower weatherproof and at the same time, less ruinous and derelict looking. We plan to install a viewing point at the top of the tower, so making it more welcoming and interesting for visitors.
That amount of work will far exceed this grant, but this funding will enable them to undertake all the preliminary work and get the scheme underway. They will be seeking funding from other streams such as the Heritage Lottery Fund to see the whole project through to completion.
“It will incorporate a training project by Medieval Masonry of Mundesley, aimed at potential masons and church restorers,” continued Michael. “So this work on the tower could bring long-term benefits for youth employment, as well as for future restoration schemes at other churches and historic buildings.”
Since 2015, the CRF has provided £4.7 million to support 117 such projects successful projects which have helped unlock the economic potential of hard-to-tackle buildings, facilities and amusements such as piers, lidos and promenades.