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Ecclesistical & Heritage World No.97

Heritage Roofing

Heritage roofing - maintaining our iconic buildings

The UK is home to some of the most iconic buildings in the world, from stunning churches and cathedrals to historic stately homes. Each and every one of these remarkable feats of architecture requires regular maintenance to ensure they remain in the very best condition, allowing them to be enjoyed for generations.


Cathedral Care

Restoration and upkeep of cathedrals

There are some 42 Anglican cathedrals in the UK, not to mention 20 or so Catholic cathedrals. Cathedrals form the most important collection of historic buildings in England. The largest and most ancient are internationally famous, the smallest are usually among the most significant buildings in their region and even the most recent are architectural masterpieces.


Master Craftsmen

Championing our heritage with modern craftsmanship

Twenty years ago, English Heritage (now Historic England) published its first-ever Register of Buildings at Risk across England, which featured nearly 2,000 buildings and monuments that were ‘neglected, broken and unloved’. Recently Historic England was delighted to announce that over two-thirds of those buildings were now safe, in both urban and rural areas right across the country.


Traditional Lime

Lime: it’s better for buildings – and for the environment

It is now fairly well known that cement is not good for old buildings and that lime mortar should be used. But why? What are the advantages and what are the disadvantages? In order to begin to answer those questions it is necessary to understand the nature of traditional building, the process by which buildings used to be built, and how it differs from modern construction, the process by which we build today.


Audio Visual

Audio visual equipment in church buildings

This guidance is issued by the Church Buildings Council under section 55(1)(d) of the Dioceses, Mission and Pastoral Measure 2007. As it is statutory guidance, it must be considered with great care. The standards of good practice set out in the guidance should not be departed from unless the departure is justified by reasons that are spelled out clearly, logically and convincingly.



CRE Events

After the Midlands, onward to Milton Keynes

"CRE Midlands reminded me of the giddy days when it first began – the venue was packed with exhibitors and visitors and there was a busy atmosphere. The whole thing looked great."



Church Insurance | Ecclesiastical

Church insurance risk

You need to ensure that reasonable precautions are in place at your church to keep it safe for those who use it. To do this, you need to think about what might cause harm to people.

You will then need to decide if the precautions already in place are adequate. If they are not, you may need to identify further action to prevent any danger. When done formally, this is known as a risk assessment.


Church Maintenance

Church maintenance and repair: Calendar of Care

Just as prevention is always better than cure, maintenance is preferable to major repairs. But, such repairs may not always be avoidable. Church Care offers a monthly guide in our coming issues Starting in Spring

We can help you understand the common problems and areas that need your special attention, and give you tips for regular maintenance schemes.


Pest Control

Michael Palin warns of pest threat to churches

Michael Palin is supporting the future of the UK’s historic churches and chapels with a voiceover for a new animated film. The 80 second animation, produced for the National Churches Trust, highlights why churches are some of the nation’s best loved buildings.


Town Halls

The history of the great Victorian Town Halls of Northern England

From industrial squalor to civic pride, the story behind some of the most impressive buildings of the North involve a unique mix of economics, grand designs and noble sentiments within communities.


Natural Stone

Identifying and sourcing stone for repair

England is fortunate to have such a wide variety of historic and older stone buildings. However, there has been a marked decline in the range of natural stones that are being actively quarried.


Lead Roofing

The benefits of lead roofing

Lead is one of the oldest materials in the roofing industry and is still commonly used throughout the world today.

Lead roofing is a traditional roofing method which has been used in the industry for hundreds of years, and is therefore proven to be extremely reliable. Lead roofing, and sand-cast lead, in particular is ideal for old buildings such as churches or historical renovations, whereas milled lead roofing is a mass-produced alternative, used for precision and accuracy in homes and commercial buildings alike.


Lightning Protection

When lightning strikes are you protected against this act of God?

The issue of lightning protection in churches is one that has exercised this publication for many years. In this four-part series of spotlights on the issue we will be revisiting various aspects of the subject, beginning with an overview of current thinking.



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Christmas services need great music!

Finding good, reliable organists or musicians for church services is becoming increasingly difficult for churches of all denominations. The Hymnal Plus is the ultimate worship music solution - an ideal digital hymnal system to fill the gap for those who have no instrument or simply want good traditional digital church music.

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Are you safe working at height compliant?

The working at height regulations cover all occupations and places of work, placing duties on the employers, employees, self-employed and persons who control the work of others.They apply to every work place and all occupations, including volunteers who offer their services at ecclesiastical and heritage sites, stately homes, castles and even zoo’s.

The regulations clearly state that works must be planned, organised and carried out by a competent person.

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Large audio-visual project brings big success

St Mary Witney Sound Streaming speaker installation by API Sound Visual 226x300Set in the heart of Oxfordshire, St Mary the Virgin -  a beautiful, large Grade 1* listed parish church -  was a sizable project for APi Sound & Visual. The church’s presence in the town has been steadily growing, and they now have a large regular congregation both in person and online.

As with any large project, APi’s Andy Pidsley had a lot to think about when it came to designing the new audio-visual system.

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Window commemorates safe delivery of endangered child

Wayne ricketts pic 002Stained glass artist Wayne Ricketts describes a commission for a window to give thanks for a miracle

I was commissioned to design a stained glass window for the Roman Catholic Church of St Sebastian and St Pancras in North West London by Andrew Agbarakwe, a worshipper who wanted to donate it to the church to give thanks for the safe delivery of his child after a difficult pregnancy. The window was to depict Blessed Cyprian Michael Iwene Tansi, a Nigerian priest and Trappist monk who was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1998.

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Reclaim Audio launches brand new website

reclaimReclaim Audio, a pioneer in socially conscious loudspeaker manufacturing, has officially launched its new website. The new site highlights the concept behind Reclaim Audio while also providing a platform for the world to meet its award-winning product range.

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Lightning protection for historic properties

Lightning protection for historical buildings is particularly important in order to protect and preserve the heritage of the building. However, as Adrian Brown of Nottingham-based Lightning Strike Ltd explains, historic buildings weren’t constructed with lightning protection as a consideration, so it’s important that the appearance of the system doesn’t appear out of character and intrusive.

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New church is blank canvas for sound system

RichardKingSystems pic1The completion of The Lighthouse Church in Heswall, Wirral, is the culmination of a nine-year project to build the brand new church as a place of worship, service and hospitality. As the previous 1960s building was showing its age, with many things wrong that were going to be very expensive to fix, it was decided to create the building that was really needed.

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Church’s new heating ticks all the boxes

Argonaut picTrinity Church North Finchley was formed in 1980 by the coming together of two churches in North Finchley in North London. During the latter half of the 1970s the relationship between North Finchley United Reformed Church (formerly North Finchley Congregational Church) and North Finchley Baptist Church went from strength to strength, and it was decided to recommend that the two churches should unite to form a single church.

The Baptist Church was later demolished and the URC church renovated and extended. Trinity Church, set in the heart of North Finchley, makes the premises available to a large number of community groups from the local area, welcoming people from a wide range of backgrounds.

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Rock star Rick gapes at his cape

big sing choir at work 002Self-styled grumpy old rock star Rick Wakeman had a major shock on Wednesday (November 8) after cutting the tape to open the two-day Christian Resources Exhibition at Cranmore Park, in Solihull. 

Clerical textile designer Juliet Hemingray, presented him with a bespoke richly coloured cloak created to highlight ‘Morning has Broken,’ a song by Cat Stevens on which he played piano.

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Hathern Terra Cotta’s 100-year partnership with Birmingham City University’s STEAMhouse

HTC SteamHouse Birmingham 2023 Beccy 3 web 792x528STEAMhouse is a hybrid building that promotes collaboration between students, start-ups and larger businesses, which Aukett Swanke began the design and briefing process of in January 2018.

Hathern Terra Cotta’s involvement in the project started in 1899 when Hathern Station Brick and Terra Cotta Company were approached to supply the initial terracotta. Over the next few decades, it moved on from its genesis as the Eccles Rubber and Cycle Company headquarters and became a linen clothing factory under the Co-operative Society. Next, it produced factory-made pianos from 1931 before producing bedsteads from 1941 onwards until it fell into disuse and was ultimately severely damaged by a fire in 2007.

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Ecclesiastical urges heritage organisations to be vigilant following National Gallery Just Stop Oil attack

In response to Just Stop Oil activists smashing the glass cover of Diego Velazquez's The Rokeby Venus painting at the National Gallery, Ecclesiastical is urging heritage organisations to be vigilant.  

Today, two Just Stop Oil activists were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage after they used safety hammers to smash the glass protecting The Rokeby Venus at the National Gallery in Central London. 

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Cathedral school warms to new boiler installations

MellorMottram pic1Hereford Cathedral School is considered to be among the oldest schools in England. Located next to the cathedral from which it derives its name (pictured), there was probably a school associated with the cathedral from the time of the foundation of the see in the late 7th century. The earliest documentary record of its existence dates from 1384, when Bishop John Gilbert appointed Richard de Cornwaille as school master and authorised him to rule over the school ‘with birch and rod’. The school's library is named after Bishop Gilbert and Cornwall house is named for Richard de Cornwaille.

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Wind - tree damage warning - please prepare

UBZzXhQEven healthy trees unaffected by defects can fail in extreme weather conditions. Trees can be managed but they cannot be controlled and to live near a tree is to accept some degree of risk. Reasonable risk management generally aims to provide trees that can be regarded as stable in a normal / foreseeable regularly experienced storm event in relation to the situation / context of the tree.

Ian Barnes, of Yorkshire-based tree consultants Barnes Associates, explains: "In this region it is reasonable to assume a 'Storm' of force 10 using the Beaufort Scale (55 - 63 miles per hour) of wind speeds on land will occur annually. It should be realised that all trees do pose a risk - even sound trees that would typically be regarded as safe can fail during high winds.

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Benefact Group provides transformative awards to four heritage charities

V7Le0ImAs part of its Movement for Good Awards, Benefact Group has donated over £130,000 to charitable causes leading the change in the heritage sector across the UK.

The latest phase of the Movement for Good Awards has awarded over £480,000 to charities working across climate change and environment, education and skills, heritage and arts and rural and community sectors.

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Visitors return to Marble Hill House following completion of restoration project

Marble Hilll House exterior completed restoration USL 002Following an extensive restoration completion in the autumn of 2021 by Universal Stone Ltd., English Heritage visitors can now explore the rooms that Henrietta Howard walked and greeted her social circle at Marble Hill House in Twickenham.  Historically described as one of the jewels in London’s crown, Marble Hill is an early 18th-century Georgian masterpiece, built for the Prince of Wales’s mistress, Henrietta. Constructed between 1724-1729 by architect Roger Morris, it is one of the earliest examples of Neo-Palladian style in the country. 

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Contacta offers hearing access for all with new RX-30 rechargeable loop listener

The new Contacta RX 30 rechargeable loop listenerAssistive listening specialists, Contacta Systems, have launched a new rechargeable loop listener, offering worshippers enhanced access to sound.

The RX-30 is a complete wireless receiver, designed to help people with hearing loss who don’t use a hearing aid or cochlear implant. 

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More heritage charities celebrate share of £1million fund

0n7752Two heritage charities are celebrating today after receiving donations of £1,000 each as part of Benefact Group’s Movement for Good Awards.

For the fifth year running, Ecclesiastical Insurance and Benefact Group are giving away £1million to charities through their Movement for Good awards. Members of the public were invited to nominate causes close to their hearts, with 150 awards of £1,000 announced today. 

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