Charity behind popular book sale in Morston raises enough to begin church repairs

The friends of Morston Church are setting up a book sale for this weekend. Pictured are (from left)

The friends of Morston Church are setting up a book sale for this weekend. Pictured are (from left) Jock Wingfield, David Carnwath, Sally Metcalfe, Sue Smith, Anne Rolfe and Lady Jane Barson. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

A north Norfolk church is looking forward to a new chapter in its 800 year history after a major fund raising effort.

Morston Church. Picture: Ian Burt

Morston Church. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

A staggering £70,000 has been raised over five years by the Friends of Morston Church allowing much-needed repairs to begin on the historic church in the village near Wells.

One of their biggest fund raisers is the Morston Book Sale which launched eight years ago and has proven to be so popular that it has contributed to half of the £70,000 they have raised.

But the fundraising efforts are far from over, with the full repairs expected to cost close to £200,000. The book sale is returning this weekend and organisers hope that it will give them a boost to help cross the £100,000 mark.

Charity treasurer Rob Metcalfe said: 'Our original target was £100,000 when we started and overall we are close to that. The £70,000 is what we've raised in the last five years but we actually started the book sale eight years ago.'

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That initial book sale raised £1,500 for the charity but it was so popular that last year they raised close to ten times that original amount, with a total of £11,400.

Mr Metcalfe said: 'The book sale has kept growing every year as more people hear about it and more and more books are sent to us. It keeps growing and as more people find out what we're doing and get involved we hope to raise more over time.'

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Mr Metcalfe added: 'The book sale has been the biggest thing for us but we also have a quiz every year where local villagers come together, and we put on a dinner in autumn. The dinner usually includes a talk and various other things when we can get the man power to do them. We have actually managed to have very good talk on Formula 1 thanks to someone in the village who was involved with it.'

Plans for the start of the restoration work on Morston All Saints Church are currently being drawn up with a view to begin later this year. The focus will be on areas deemed urgent, such as the roof and drainage.

Mr Metcalfe added: 'We have thousands of books for sale of all kinds, from 10am to 5pm at Morston Barn in the village. There are some real bargains to be had, and everything is half price again on Monday.'

Morston Book Sale is taking place at Morston Barn between 10am and 5pm on April 29 until Monday May 1.

For more information visit the Friends of Morston Church website.

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