Church gets share of roof repair cash

Photo: David Hurst
St Ignatius Church.St Ignatius Square. Preston
Photo: David Hurst St Ignatius Church.St Ignatius Square. Preston
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A Preston church has received £99,900 of Government cash towards vital roof repairs.

Grade II listed St Ignatius’ RC Church will take a step towards becoming weather-tight after it was named as one of 26 North West beneficiaries of the Listed Places of Worship: Roof Repair Fund.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, who announced the funds, said: “Churches and cathedrals are a pillar of British life and we are committed to ensuring future generations will be able to admire and use these historic buildings.”

At £99,900, the grant for St Ignatius’ is the highest awarded in Lancashire.

Leaders at places of worship could apply for between £10,000 and £100,000 to meet the costs of urgent repairs to roofs and rainwater disposal systems. Money is also being provided for structural investigations; specialist reports and bat surveys.

The Bishop of Lancaster, The Rt Rev Michael G Campbell, said: “I am so very pleased with the awarding of this grant which is the fruit of so much hard work and planning – all for the good of St Ignatius’ Church and the Syro-Malabar Parish of St Alphonsa at St Ignatius.

“I congratulate everyone involved in the application process and especially Parish Priest Father Mathew Jacob Choorapoikayil for all the work involved. Of course, the work for the complete re-

generation of St Ignatius Church and presbytery goes on, under God, and with our full support.”

The church in St Ignatius’ Square, is currently used exclusively by the city’s Indian Syro-Malabar community under the charge of appointed priest Father Mathew Jacob Choorapoikayil.

Elsewhere in Lancashire, St Wilfred’s Church in Ribchester will also receive £86,900 for urgent work.

Heritage Minister Tracey Crouch said: “Churches and cathedrals are the jewel in the crown of our national heritage and it is vital they remain in good repair and are accessible for all.

“These buildings are at the heart of communities across the country and I am delighted so many will benefit from this important fund.”