• 10 April 2019

Holywood church receives funding boost

A much–loved County Down church is to share in a £323,687 funding payout from the National Churches Trust.  

A £14,000 National Churches Trust Repair Grant will help fund tower and spire repairs at the Grade B+ listed St Philip and St James church, Holywood, making the church watertight and preserving its historic fabric.

Broadcaster and journalist Huw Edwards, Vice President of The National Churches Trust, said: “The UK’s historic churches and chapels are a vital part of our national heritage. But to survive, many need to carry out urgent repairs and install modern facilities. The cost of this work is far beyond what most congregations can pay for themselves.”

“So I’m delighted that the church of St Philip and St James, Holywood, is being helped with a £14,000 National Churches Trust Grant. The work on the tower and spire repairs will help secure the future of a historic building.”

Revd Canon Gareth Harron, incumbent of Holywood Parish said:

“Having worked with the National Churches Trust in another parish, I was delighted that Holywood Parish was successful in receiving a grant in this allocation. We are excited about getting this vital refurbishment up and running and look forward to how the works both preserve the historic fabric of our wonderful church building and enable us to reach future generations in our community.”

The church

St Philip and St James began life in 1842 as a church built to replace an old priory building. It was then tripled in size and can now accommodate 500 worshippers.

The architect for the church was Mr (later Sir) Charles Lanyon who also designed the main building at Queen’s University in Belfast, later named the Lanyon Building.

The project

The project will address urgently needed repairs to the tower and spire. The spire is noticeably leaning due to the corrosion of iron cramps. The balustrade to the base of the spire is subject to a marine environment and in a desperate state. Gutters and downpipes are in the process of being repaired.

Supporting church buildings

A total of 34 churches and chapels in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will benefit from the latest grants from the National Churches Trust, the charity supporting church buildings of all Christian denominations across the UK.

The Trust funds churches of all denominations throughout the UK. Applications for grants can be made online at this link.