Villagers run 10K to replace rare thatched church roof

Celia Clarke and James Coleman hold a bundle of Norfolk Reed, PICTURE: Ron Brewer.

Celia Clarke and James Coleman hold a bundle of Norfolk Reed, PICTURE: Ron Brewer. - Credit: Ron Brewer

Villagers are running 10K to replace the roof of a rare thatched church.

Old Buckeham All Saints Church, October 12, 1970.

Old Buckeham All Saints Church, October 12, 1970.

The Old Buckenham 2000 Trust is organising the run on Sunday, April 22 on behalf of the Raise the Roof project to replace the thatched roof on the parish church.

All Saints Parish Church is a Grade I listed building and is believed to be the only church in the country with both a fully thatched roof over the nave and chancel along with a full height octagonal tower.

The community decided that the whole roof needed to be completely replaced in early 2017 when the winter weather saw water leak through the church ceiling.

The thatch is made with reed from the Norfolk Broads, and replacing it will require 400 reed bundles.

The total cost of the work is expected to exceed £100,000, and the amount currently stands at £14209.

All Saints was last re-thatched in the 1980s.

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The run will start and finish on the village green, with up to 300 runners expected to take part.

All profits from the day will go to Raise the Roof, which is run by the Old Buckenham PCC.

Raise the Roof member Alison Hannah said: 'We are really looking forward to it.'

The race starts at 11am and heads out into the countryside surrounding the village, along quiet roads.

Electronic timing chips will be provided for all runners wanting to beat the clock, but Raise the Roof member David Hannah said that those who wish to take their time and enjoy the views are also very welcome.

Under 18s are invited to participate as long as they are accompanied by an adult at all times, and the race is also open to wheelchair users.

Registration and prize giving for all categories will take place at Old Buckenham village hall where tea and cakes will be available for both the entrants and those waiting for the return of their friends and family members.

If you wish to take part visit: where you will find all the details of the race and facilities.

The run is not the only upcoming activity Raise the Roof is organising.

Other future fundraising events will include Bingo in the Church Rooms on Saturday, April 21, and an open gardens weekend on June 30 and July 1.

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