St.Thomas Roof Repairs 2002

St Thomas' church stands at the junction of Congleton Road, Mow Cop Road and Church Lane. Consecrated in 1842, it was designed by Mr Stanley of Shelton, Stoke-on-Trent and built of local stone. The cost of building it was 1,700, which was raised by subscriptions and grants from various societies. The organ in the west gallery was the gift of Mrs Kinnersley, the communion set the gift of Mrs Clegg and the font the gift of the late A.L.

St Thomas' is a Grade II Listed Building, and an important feature in the village. 160 years on it is in need of restoration, the cost of repairs being 90,000 - a far cry from the costs of 1842! Money has been raised by parishioners and friends, and by grants from various societies - namely English Heritage Lottery Fund, Staffordshire County Council, Newcastle Borough Council, Historic Churches Preservation Trust, Staffordshire Historic Churches Trust, The Garfield Weston Foundation, The Alan Evans Memorial Trust, The Strasser Foundation and All Churches Trust. We are very grateful to all who have given and supported us and who will support us into the future since we are still attempting to reach the 90,000 plus target.

Our architects in this period of the church's life have been Mr David Slade and latterly Mr Chris Hesketh of Christopher Taylor Design of Leek. The contractors are Sandy & Co Ltd of Stafford, who have worked in inclement weather since January 2002.

The work has involved the complete re-roofing of the church, using Welsh slate as on the original roof, there have also been ceiling repairs and redecoration. The tower has needed considerable work to make it stable, since a bulge was detected on the churchyard side. New floors and access to the tower roof have been inserted and the tower roof repaired. Once the repairs are completed the church will look very much the same, but we shall be secure in the knowledge that we shall be dry and safe!

Hopefully, the work will be completed by the end of April and we plan to celebrate the weekend of 13-14 July. The Bishop of Stafford will be joining us for a Service of Thanksgiving on 14 July at 6. 00pm - please feel welcome to join us for this or any other events you see advertised. The church will be open for visitors on the Saturday and for worship on the Sunday, both morning and evening. As part of the celebrations we are assembling an exhibition of church life over 160 years, as well as life in Mow Cop. If you can help us in any way with this we should be glad to hear from you. - either via the web-site address or telephone 01782 515077.

0 give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! - Jill Waters (Revd)

Article by Rev.Jill Waters