Church of England Diocese of Ely St. Peter and St. Paul Wisbech

National Heritage Lottery Funding Progress

20 Oct 2020, 10 a.m.
Church_news Community_news News_about_our_building Notices

Pupils at one Wisbech school have heard how they are set to play a vital role in helping secure the future of the town's historic St Peter's Church.

Year 6 children at Ramnoth school were given a special insight into a half-a-million pound project, which aims to bring essential repairs to the 900 year old church and help make it fit for the 21st century.

The Parish Project Team of St Peter’s Church are keeping their fingers crossed that by Christmas they will have secured £350,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund to carry out the work.

Val Spriggs, treasurer of St Peter's Church and the project leader outlines why the lottery bid is essential in preparation for the children to write a newspaper article aided by Citizen reporter Sarah Cliss via online.Val Spriggs, treasurer of St Peter's Church and the project leader outlines why the lottery bid is essential in preparation for the children to write a newspaper article aided by Citizen reporter Sarah Cliss via online.

The team, led by Val Spriggs, church treasurer and project co-ordinator for the 'Church of the Future Scheme', have already received £56,300 made possible by National Lottery players, to help develop the programme of repairs and improvements the historic building needs.

On Thursday Mrs Spriggs visited the school to outline the projects aims and to explain to the children how they have a pivotal role in the second round of the grant bid after being included in the development phase as one of the project's partner schools.

The day before she had given both Ramnoth's Year 6 classes a virtual tour of the church outlining its history and importance to the town.

Year 6 pupils at Ramnoth School in Wisbech learning about issues with the town's St Peter's Church, ready to write newspaper articles as part of the project's lottery bid.Year 6 pupils at Ramnoth School in Wisbech learning about issues with the town's St Peter's Church, ready to write newspaper articles as part of the project's lottery bid.

She told the children why the lottery funding is so vital to help repair the Grade I listed building, which has a rotting roof and crumbling masonry among other issues.

Mrs Spriggs explained the aim was to repair the church and to introduce extra facilities including a kitchen and toilets to make the building more suitable as a community venue for concerts, plays and other events.

It would also, she explained, enable the church to extend help to the town's homeless by being able to provide hot food and drinks particularly in the winter months.

Year 6 pupils at Ramnoth School in Wisbech learning about issues with the town's St Peter's Church, ready to write newspaper articles as part of the project's lottery bid.Year 6 pupils at Ramnoth School in Wisbech learning about issues with the town's St Peter's Church, ready to write newspaper articles as part of the project's lottery bid.

But she said the project needs the support of the wider Wisbech community including the school children in order for their lottery bid to succeed.

She told the children their role was to help spread the word of what's happening with St Peter's and aid the church's aim of showing it is being inclusive to all parts of the community.

Ramnoth and the other partner school the Orchards Academy will be involved in the project over the next few years, with the completion date for the scheme set for 2022. Mrs Spriggs will be visiting the Orchards later in the school year.

Year 6 pupils at Ramnoth School in Wisbech learning about issues with the town's St Peter's Church, ready to write newspaper articles as part of the project's lottery bid.Year 6 pupils at Ramnoth School in Wisbech learning about issues with the town's St Peter's Church, ready to write newspaper articles as part of the project's lottery bid.

On Thursday, after Mrs Spriggs, had outlined the lottery bid and why it is so essential, Fenland Citizen reporter Sarah Cliss joined the classes online to offer them guidance on writing their own newspaper articles highlighting the current plight of the church and its aspiration for the future.

The aim is to publish some of the finished articles in a future edition of the Citizen.

Mrs Spriggs, after her visit, said: "It was wonderful to see the children at work. They really took an interest and grasped a lot of facts about the church and what we are trying to do."

By Sarah Cliss for Fenland Citizen Newspaper Published: 14:42, 09 October 2020