Fr John writes
Work has progressed well during the first week of renovations. With the accumulation over the decades of bits and pieces of all manner now cleared, the place is already looking quite different. Old carpeting and flooring has been pulled up, so lots of bare floorboards around the place now. Walls have been stripped, revealing what needs to be done to many of the walls if they are to be fit to paint. The repair and replacement of windows has made great progress. Some windows that have not been able to be opened for years now slide up and down beautifully. That's a great bonus now we're experiencing hot weather!
An understandable question to ask is: how is the parish finding the money to do this? Well, we have been able to get underway thanks to a generous legacy left to the parish by the Harrington family a couple of years ago. A friend who came to visit me and saw all that needed to be done, without being asked, immediately donated a most substantial sum. I also applied to The Trinity Fund, a fund administered by clergy of Westminster Diocese to assist parishes where financial constraints hinder its mission. Again, recognising the extent of the works required the Fund have given a grant of £30,000. That alone was incredibly generous. However, in order to give a start to the refurbishment of the Church, they gave a further £20,000. This will go towards repairing the windows in the church and decorating the porch. I am extremely grateful to the support given by The Trinity Fund. Rather than make us complacent, I hope that the Harrington legacy, the donation from my friend and the help from the Trinity Fund will encourage us in the fundraising we need to if, God willing, our beautiful church can be fully renovated.