£4.3million supports places of worship in Midlands and East of England communities

£4.3million supports places of worship in Midlands and East of England communities

An older woman looks at magazines and leaflets on a table in a busy church
Churches can be thriving hubs for local communities.
Three churches working to establish themselves as hubs for heritage and communities are receiving funding to support their plans for vital repairs and public activities.

Our commitment to support historic places of worship to save and share their heritage continues to inform our funding approach, set out in our 10-year strategy Heritage 2033

Robyn Llewellyn, Director of England, Midlands & East at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: "We are thrilled to support these churches as they embrace new purposes and preserve their important heritage.

“It's through investing in dynamic projects like these that we can ensure historic places of worship continue to be valued for generations to come."

Reawakening St Mary Magdalene, Supporting Newark's Communities 

St Mary Magdalene’s towering spire dominates Newark, and its current Heritage Fund-supported project (awarded £2.7m in total) aims to rejuvenate the church as a community hub. Training and apprenticeship opportunities will help young people develop heritage skills and contribute to saving this nationally significant church.

Alongside critical roof repairs and accessibility improvements, an inclusive engagement programme developed with communities in Newark will make everyone feel welcome.

Andrew Fearn, Project Lead and Churchwarden, said: “Thanks to the generosity of National Lottery players, we have the opportunity to secure this wonderful building for future generations. Our Activity Plan is ambitious and imaginative, and I am thrilled that it will enable us to support the town’s communities, visitors and tourists alike.”

The exterior of a large church with a spire during summer
The church of St Mary Magdalene, Newark. Photo: Julian P Guffogg.

Forging the Way Forward at St Mary's Church

St Mary's in Stebbing, Essex has been awarded £1.6m for major repairs and improvements to protect the Grade I listed church and increase its use by the community. 

Levelling the church’s floor and replacing the kitchen, heating and electrical systems will create new opportunities for events and activities, while training for staff and volunteers will build a foundation for the church’s longer-term future. A dedicated historian and an ecologist in residence will conduct research and lead engagement with visitors.

Rhoda Herbert, restoration project lead at St Mary's The Way Forward, said: "We are confident the project will see this ancient and beautiful Anglican church building sympathetically restored and become a thriving hub for the local community."

A child in a red jumper, hat and eye mask draped in ivy
Engaging younger generations at places of worship.

Building a New Community Hub at Holy Trinity Church, Colchester

Working in partnership, Colchester City Council and Community360 hope to transform the historical Holy Trinity Church in the heart of the city. We have awarded £147,328 in development funding, with the potential for an additional £1.7m to deliver the project.

Get funding to conserve and share the heritage of your local places of worship

We fund projects that make buildings more sustainable and give sites a new purpose within the community. Explore more on our places of worship page.

You might also be interested in...

If you query is regarding our application portal, please contact our support team.