CAST, a Community based Heritage Charity has secured funding to ensure
a bright, new future for St John the Evangelist Church, Bacup
A team of volunteers have been awarded £10.000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to undertake a project to establish a new not-for-profit organisation in order to breathe new life into St John the Evangelist Church, Bacup.
The project is the brainchild of valley resident and Church owner Freddy Khattab. He has brought together a team of like-minded people who live or work in the area in order to set up the new incorporated organisation and describes the church as:
“A building of great heritage, architecture and history, which I am honoured to have as my home. Since moving to Lancashire in 2015 I have been inspired by many stories from people who used to worship at St Johns. From this and the passion I have for the Church, I felt that it would be a rewarding and fantastic journey to once again open it up for the community and visitors to enjoy events and the wonderful new landscaped garden of the church, located in the heart of Bacup which I believe has a great future ahead”
Rossendale has been identified as a Priority Development Area by HLF, and so Freddy and his team felt there was no better time to try to save one of Rossendale’s cherished listed buildings in a way that will benefit the community. Our fervent hope is to convert St John’s into a Heritage Arts and Culture Centre which will provide much needed work for the local community, attracting new visitors to Bacup from the valley, neighbouring counties and further afield.
To assist the process Community Assets Standing Tall (CAST) has agreed to act as fund manager and provide the necessary organisational umbrella and administrate the project to meet the contractual requirements of HLF.
Similarly, Valley Heritage have agreed to provide architectural and specialist heritage advice to bring the project to fruition.
As part of the public consultation process: Bacup THI Manager Mhorag Saxon, the Conservation Officer Sebastian Pickles and local ward councillor Jackie Oaks have confirmed their support for the project.
The project also has community support from CAST, Valley Heritage, Bacup Social Enterprise (BaSE), Bacup Pride, Bacup Natural History Society and Museum, Burnley Pendle and Rossendale Council for Voluntary Service (BPRCVS) and various other groups.
“Everyone involved is thrilled that this project has been supported by HLF and thank the National Lottery players, who through this grant, allow us to plan the future of St John the Evangelist Church, Bacup”
“CAST are looking forward to helping the new organisation receive the correct training and support it needs to undertake the development required to achieve the final goal of a new Heritage Arts and Culture centre for the community and be equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to secure the further funding to turn this dream into a reality”.
“This will be a great opportunity for volunteers who are interested in or want to learn more about Rossendales’ local Heritage” said June Worsley, Chairperson, CAST.
Notes to the Reader
About the Heritage Lottery Fund
Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about – from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife.
For further information, images and interviews, please contact:
Name: Ian Taylor Contact Mob No: 07817 522095
Position: Secretary Email: Ian