Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting EJ NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
After 900 years church will get running water
A VALE village church is set to have running water for the first time in its 900-year history.
St Barbara’s, in Ashtonunder- Hill, has never had a mains water supply in the building or a toilet in its entire history.
Bottled water has to be brought in for refreshments, cleaning and church flowers while visitors have to use the toilets in the nearby pub.
Having limited facilities makes it difficult for the church to hold public events or for people attending concerts and regular Sunday services.
But now the Grade II listed building – which only had electricity installed in the 1940s – is set to have a new kitchen unit at the back of the church along with a new toilet with disabled access.
An architect is already working on drawing up some preliminary plans and is looking into drainage.
Malcolm Nelson, church warden, said they needed to bring the building into the 21st century.
“It’s no longer acceptable to not have a toilet in a building like a church,” he said. “People come from a long way away for baptisms, weddings and funerals. People nowadays like to use church buildings for concerts and public events. Not having mains water and toilets really restricts what we can do in every way.
“Potentially we can hold coffee mornings and village events as people do in other churches.”
The project is in the very early stages, but it is expected to cost at least £30,000 to fund the work.
“We will have to embark on fund-raising,” added Mr Nelson.
“It’s going to take a while but we’re fairly optimistic we can do it eventually.
It will be a benefit to the local community.”