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Take a look at the £800,000 renovation work being carried out at a 900-year-old church

PUBLISHED: 16:07 21 June 2018

King's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian Burt

Archant

Extensive work is being carried out to renovate a 900-year-old church in the heart of King’s Lynn.

King's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian Burt

Located in the historic Saturday Market Place, the King’s Lynn Minster has been shrouded in scaffolding since March this year.

The £800,000 repair work will see the restoration and re-leading of the clerestory windows in the north choir, which were last repaired in the 1870s.

The crumbling stonework outside of the church, originally built with Roman cement, will be replaced with stronger material.

King's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian Burt

There will be an additional entrance and emergency exit on the west side of the church, making it safer for visitors and increasing the capacity from 300 to 500.

There will also be new facilities installed in the northwest tower and porch, including a meeting room and toilet, which the church does not currently have.

Canon Chris Ivory said: “The leading is falling and the windows are getting buckled, it’s getting to the point where they were getting blown out.

King's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation. Pictured is Canon Chris Ivory Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation. Pictured is Canon Chris Ivory Picture: Ian Burt

“Not having a toilet is a real disadvantage, it costs a huge amount of money but it has been on the table for about 60 years. 
“Every 20 to 25 years we are doing something, the last major work was in 2003 on the south side.”

The work is being carried out by Essex-based masonry contractors Universal Stone, which has previously worked on restoring Norwich Cathedral and Framlingham Castle.

The total cost of the project comes to around £834,000 and so far £745,000 has been raised through the Heritage Lottery Fund, government grants, local businesses and fundraising events.

King's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian Burt

It is hoped the £90,000 shortfall can be met by grants from trusts, local businesses and further fund raising events and donations.

Canon Chris Ivory believes it may be another year until all of the restoration work is complete, but the internal scaffolding will be removed before the King’s Lynn Festival begins on Sunday, July 15.

“It will be a great relief to have the renovation work done because we know that it’s been getting bad for quite a long time,” Canon Chris Ivory added.

King's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian BurtKing's Lynn Minster is undergoing an £800,000 renovation Picture: Ian Burt

“It will be a great relief to know that that’s all secure and safe and it really will be wonderful to have the new facilities.”



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