FUTURE PLANS 2022
At the meeting of the PCC on Tuesday 11 October 2022 it was agreed that a revised set of plans be approved for further consultation with the congregation and other interested parties. A meeting was held at 11.00am on Saturday 12th November when the new plans were presented and views sought.
Below are examples of the new proposals.
Many of the features of the original concept plan have been kept in place whilst some additional features have been added.
Key changes include;
i. the reduction in size of the gallery performance space. It was felt that this was too intrusive and spoiled the overall look of the church interior.
ii. the cafe area does not need to be screened off as this limits the flexible use of the church.
iii. the memorial chapel / quiet prayer space should be left in its current position but screened off.
iv. the lift and stairs to the gallery need not be included in the plans for the first phase of the work but should be included in the over all scheme.
These plans show the revised version with seating options for the cafe area and for full seating when needed for larger events. The plan on the far right also shows the option for the removal of the screen and pulpit and extending the chancel area.
Below is the Power Point presentation used at the meeting. It is a very large file and may take a while to upload fully. The presentation will appear as a download (possibly at the bottom of your screen) which you will then need to open when prompted.
Additional areas which have been added to the original plan are the complete refurbishment of the upper vestry and alterations to the chancel area to create a more flexible space.
Plan showing the layout for the vestry with the new kitchen / servery area and new toilet layout with the entrance being where the door into the storage cupboard is now.
Plan showing the layout for the chancel area with the screen, pulpit and choir stalls removed. Moveable seating would replace the choir stalls and the wooden screen would be repurposed.
The options shown above and in the PowerPoint presentation are offered as possible ways which will help secure the future of St. Thomas' church. We are under no illusion about the complexity of the task. However, doing nothing is not an option. We must find ways of making St. Thomas' Church more accessible and user friendly if its future is to be secured.
As well as the options offered above we will need to ensure that the building is watertight, that the electric and plumbing systems are safe and fit for purpose, and that we have a heating system which helps us reach the required "net zero" target set for 2030. Whilst we already have funding for some of the work we will need to work hard to secure additional funding if we are to achieve success. What we need to do next is to set out a clear "big picture" which encompasses all of the work which is needed. Once this is in place we can think about dividing the work up into phases, setting timescales for the completion of each phase and securing the necessary funding.
If you are able to help in any way or have any further ideas or suggestions please get in touch with us. We would love to hear from you. Thank you.