Former resident ‘utterly disgusted’ by neglect of village church
PUBLISHED: 13:42 13 November 2019 | UPDATED: 13:49 13 November 2019
A former resident has expressed her disgust at the neglect of a village church which has been unused for years.
Helen Stell, a former resident of South Runcton, has conveyed her concern at the state of St Andrew's Church in South Runcton.
The Diocese of Ely church building, which is situated on the A10 Lynn Road in King's Lynn, has been unused for years.
In a letter sent to the Bishop of Ely, which was also sent to this newspaper, Ms Stell called on the Church of England to "act now" before the building ended up in ruin.
But church officials said the location of the church has made it difficult for regular use and said it was in discussions over the alternative use of the building.
Ms Stell said: "My sister and I are utterly disgusted at the neglect of the building by the Diocese of Ely.
"Can it not be sold immediately so a skilled architect can transform it into a house?
"It is quite unreasonable to leave it empty and untended."
The former resident was also appalled by the state of a large tree on the north side of the church.
She added: "If it fell in a gale, it would cause immense damage to the church.
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"Don't let a good church building go to rack and ruin because you don't get your act together.
"Act now, and let a new generation enjoy the treasured building of generations before."
A church official said the Diocese of Ely had been funding the maintenance and repairs to the building and it was uncertain of the church's future.
Geoffrey Hunter, head of the church buildings department at the Diocese of Ely, said: "Since the re-routing of the A10 in the late 1970s it has struggled to be an active parish church.
"A public meeting held in Runcton Holme church hall in 2017 identified little scope for community use for the building, primarily because of its location, and little interest from members of the community present in helping to maintain the church as a local landmark.
"The Diocese is working hard in consultation with local and national bodies to find a suitable alternative use for the building that will preserve it in the long run and is looking at various options in consultation with the Church Commissioners."