We need pennies from heaven for our historic church

Flower power – floral festival arrangers hope to raise cash for the appeal

Flower power – floral festival arrangers hope to raise cash for the appeal

First published in Local News by

AN APPEAL has been launched to raise £500,000 to revamp a dilapidated church, which is one of the oldest in south Essex.

St Mary the Virgin, Benfleet, has rotting floorboards and needs new heating to keep its congregation warm this winter.

Church members, who have launched the appeal, already have £72,000 and have put in various grant requests to raise much-needed cash.

They are now appealing for the public to get behind them.

Diana Hawkins, church member, said it had been an aspiration for a while.

She said: “This really will be a major renovation of the church. The inside has been sadly neglected because there is lots of stuff we want to do and we can’t do it all at once.

“We want to put in new flooring and sort out the plaster because it isamess in places. We also need new heating.

“We need £500,000, but we’re confident we can do it.

“We have already put in requests for grant funding and are expecting replies soon.

“This will bring back St Mary’s to its former glory and make it a warmer and safer place.”

If theymanage to get the majority of the grants, the members hope to start work on the church this autumn and have the heating in place for the winter.

The rest of the work would follow and, hopefully, be completed in the new year.

St Mary’s Church is on the corner of Essex Way and the High Road Tradition has it that the foundation stones of the existing church were laid in 894.

It is believed an earlier church on the site was destroyed during the Battle of Benfleet between the Saxons and Vikings in 893.

To find out more about helping the church, or to fundraise, visit http://stmarybenfleet.co.uk/

Comments (6)

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10:51am Mon 18 Aug 14

Jack222 says...

Too many old churches - time for some to go. The congregation should move and sell this building.
Too many old churches - time for some to go. The congregation should move and sell this building. Jack222
  • Score: -5

11:53am Mon 18 Aug 14

ravnos says...

The Church is the most affluent "business" in the world, with most of the money sat in The Vatican. Surely they can share and help each other out....?
The Church is the most affluent "business" in the world, with most of the money sat in The Vatican. Surely they can share and help each other out....? ravnos
  • Score: 2

12:10pm Mon 18 Aug 14

Howard Cháse says...

The Church as an organisation is not short of a few bob.

Ask the big wigs for the dough.
The Church as an organisation is not short of a few bob. Ask the big wigs for the dough. Howard Cháse
  • Score: 2

4:41pm Mon 18 Aug 14

runwellian says...

They have enough money, let them pay for their own buildings or be paid for by those that want to use them.
They have enough money, let them pay for their own buildings or be paid for by those that want to use them. runwellian
  • Score: -1

8:14pm Mon 18 Aug 14

Kim Gandy says...

So money can be found for mosques but not for churches...
So money can be found for mosques but not for churches... Kim Gandy
  • Score: 0

10:28pm Mon 18 Aug 14

ThisYear says...

Kim Gandy wrote:
So money can be found for mosques but not for churches...
That seems to be the case..so what do you intend to do about it?
[quote][p][bold]Kim Gandy[/bold] wrote: So money can be found for mosques but not for churches...[/p][/quote]That seems to be the case..so what do you intend to do about it? ThisYear
  • Score: 0

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