'We've been fundraising for years' - historic church receives crucial grant

Tuttington church has received a government grant to fund repair work.

Tuttington church has received a government grant to fund repair work. - Credit: Janet Lodge

A historic church at the heart of a village has been awarded a grant of over £16,000 to fund crucial repair work.

A part of the government's culture recovery fund will be used to carry out essential survey work at St Peter and St Paul's church in Tuttington near Aylsham, which has seen cracks and bulges in its masonry, roof and walls along with failing internal timberwork.

Tuttington parish councillor Janet Lodge, who has been involved in fundraising work at the church, said the work would allow them to begin planning and costing the repairs themselves.

She said: "It's fantastic news, we've been fundraising for years and it's been a real struggle because Tuttington is a small village, so this has really given us a boost."

Ms Lodge said the church had already secured further grants for the latter stages of the work from the Round Tower Society and the Norfolk Churches Trust, with the community coming together to raise additional funds.

The Grade II listed church has been in the village for almost 1000 years and is a rare round-towered medieval church of which most examples only exist in Norfolk. 

Church warden June Rumsby said: “We are delighted to receive this funding from the culture recovery fund.

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"It will enable us find in detail where to prioritise our efforts and get essential repairs done before the damage goes beyond recovery, that way we can ensure the building continues to play an important role in our community for generations to come.”

The church is currently the only community building in Tuttington which can hold regular services and village events.

Culture secretary, Oliver Dowden said: “These grants will help the places that have shaped our skylines for hundreds of years and that continue to define culture in our towns and cities.

"We’re protecting heritage and culture in every corner of the country to save jobs and ensure it's there for future generations to enjoy.”

Duncan Wilson, Historic England CEO, said: "This funding is a lifeline which is kick-starting essential repairs and maintenance at many of our most precious historic sites, so they can begin to recover from the damaging effects of COVID-19."

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