Major repairs to St Nicholas, Salthouse
12 July 2018
Andrew Wigley, Churchwarden and Joint Project Co-ordinator shares the story of their successful application for a Heritage Lottery Fund grant and the difference it will make to their community.
The Grade 1 listed Parish Church of St Nicholas Salthouse stands high on a hill overlooking the village, the salt marshes and the North Sea. Part of the Weybourne Group within the Holt Deanery, St Nicholas’ tower was the only remains of an original 13th century church which was burnt down, making way for a larger, 16th century building.
At some stage in its history, the tower was erroneously rendered and re-pointed with cement mortar, which led to moisture being trapped behind, causing major decay to stonework, flint work, internal plaster and de-stabilising the walls to the stair turret. The flaking plaster on the west wall was beginning to be a hazard to visitors and church activities, including the annual art exhibitions and concerts.
Following the PCC’s successful application bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund in December 2017, work has now begun to restore the tower. A number of planned community activities, which formed part of our application, will be housed in the restored tower. One of these is a permanent interchangeable exhibition displaying the history of Salthouse.
We’re thankful for the National Lottery grant of £175,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund and also to the Friends of Salthouse Church for their £35,000 gift towards the costs of the project.
As the work continues, hacking off the cement mortar and removing the badly-decayed quoinstones, saddle stones and mullions, the top section of the west wall of the tower is already re-pointed with hydraulic lime and the new stonework is ready to be worked. The project is expected to take until the end of the year.