Category Archives: All Saints News

All Saints Update – March 2018

We remain determined to bring good out of a bad event by not only rebuilding All Saints, but also improving it, for our generation
and generations to come. Although there are conservation groups that have prevented us from doing what we believed we should do, we are still pressing on to provide our community with the best church building possible.

Any delay has been caused by those have the power to grant us their permission, or not; not by our architects or rebuilding committee, all of whom are working very hard to get this project done.

All Saints Church – The “tin roof” protected the fabric of the church from further damage by the “Beast from the East”.

We have more hurdles to get over, but we are working as fast as we can and making good progress. Please pray that no more obstacles
will stand in our way, and please share all of this with those you know in the community who are interested. Thank you for your patience, prayers, and good will.

All Saints Update – February 2018

We are making fast and steady progress in drawing up detailed plans  for the rebuilding.
We have been visited by the diocesan heating advisor, and by our electrical and mechanical designer.
We have also had a visit from our tree consultant.
All this is vital in enabling our architects to draw up detailed plans, which will be unveiled when they are completed and submitted to the local authority for their response.
We are putting together a fundraising group – ideas or experience in this area, please speak to the Vicar.

All Saints Update Q&A – December 2017

QUESTION – Will All Saints Church be rebuilt?

ANSWER – Yes it most certainly will, and it will be better than ever.

QUESTION – Will it look like it did before?

ANSWER – Yes it will. From Church Road it will look much as it always did. Inside, the structure of the church will be substantially as it always was.

QUESTION – What will look different?

ANSWER – On the north side (Behind the church, where the churchyard is) we hope to build a new lady chapel, vestry, meeting rooms, and other facilities, with a cloister and separate entrance in order to provide facilities for prayer, reflection, small meetings – even some larger gatherings, which will we hope honour God and serve our community. We also plan to improve access to the church by restoring the west end entrance and porch that were there when the church was first built.

QUESTION – What about the font, pulpit, monuments, etc

ANSWER – The new All Saints will have all of these things. The old font was so badly damaged it will need to be replaced. The pulpit and monument can be repaired. Decisions will have to be made about when and how to repair these in a way that means the new church is fit for purpose for many years to come, rather than simply reproducing what was there before. –

QUESTION – How long will all this take?

ANSWER – It will probably not be completed until the latter half of 2020.

QUESTION – Why is it taking so long?

ANSWER – From the beginning we were determined to bring something positive and good out of the tragedy that was the fire. We want the church to serve God and our community for many years to come and we want the new church to be the best it can be. None of us anticipated that it would take so long to clear, make safe, make plans, consult, appoint architects and other experts, produce a mountain of necessary paperwork and obtain the necessary permissions – all before a brick is placed! Others who have been through this experience tell us that actually we are moving quite quickly!

QUESTION – What is happening now?

ANSWER – We are working with our architects and the church community on the fine detail of the plans for rebuilding. We are working with our insurers on how much it will cost and how much they will give us to pay for it. We are making plans for fund raising, which will almost certainly be necessary if we are to get the building we need. We are working with the diocese and others to get the permissions we will need to embark on the project. Things are now moving very quickly.

QUESTION – How much will it cost?

ANSWER – We don’t know, because we still don’t have the final plans and costings. The church was fully insured and so most of the money will be paid for by insurance. The extra features we want to build will have to be paid for by making savings elsewhere, and/or from fundraising. The community of Fleet and others have already donated over £70,000 to the project without our having asked, so we are confident that money will be there to complete the project.

QUESTION – When can we see the plans?

ANSWER – The options we have been exploring up to now have been published on our website. New, more detailed plans will be available by the Spring, and will be widely publicised then.

Revd Mark Hayton, Vicar

All Saints Update – October 2017

You will know that for some time now we have been working to achieve the goal of rebuilding All Saints in such a way that it will serve future generations even better than it has served us. One of the ways people told us this would best be achieved was by removing some, or all, of the pillars from within the nave of the church. We have therefore been working on options to achieve this.

It has now become clear, however, that we are very unlikely ever to be given permission from the relevant authorities to significantly change the internal structure of the church, and so, reluctantly, the PCC have now decided to abandon this route and instead to work on the best achievable building option.

This decision has been made because

  • Every expert advising us has advised us that permission will never be granted to remove pillars
  • Pursuing this option further would entail further significant delay to the project, with no real expectation of success.
  • Delay is doing harm to our ongoing mission and ministry, as well as the good will of our community.
  • Delay will significantly increase the eventual cost of the project, and reduce the proportion of that cost likely to be recoverable from insurance.

For all these reasons I believe that the PCC have made the correct decision, though I appreciate that not everyone will agree.

Please be assured that following other options will still mean that we will have a much improved new All Saints which will respect and celebrate much of the past, whilst providing significantly for the future.

We will still be striving to improve access, sight lines, natural light sources, toilet facilities, lighting, heating, sound etc. The options for a restored west end entrance, and extended facilities on the north side of the church are still very much part of our plans, and we believe that these goals are achievable.

There will still be many hurdles to get over however, so please continue to pray for the building group, our architects, and all involved directly with the project.


​All Saints Rebuilding Update – 28 July 2017

This week has been a much more encouraging one for the rebuilding project.
• The Chair of the DAC has passed details of our project to the Chancellor of the Diocese in quite positive terms.

• The Archbishop has received and read our letter to him, expressed sympathy with our plight, and has passed our letter on to the director of the ‘Renewal and Reform’ process (The person trying to bring about change at a national level).

• Our own Bishop has agreed to lend his support to our project.

• I spoke to members of the Rotary club on Monday night, and they are very interested in, and very supportive of, our attempts to improve the inside of All Saints.

• None of this necessarily means that we will get what we want, but it is all helpful and encouraging.

All Saints Update – July 17

  • The rebuilding group have decided to approach the Chancellor of the diocese – a judge who has the final say over how we are allowed to rebuild – for an opinion on whether or not he would grant us a faculty to remove pillars from the church.
  • We are also writing to the Archbishop and Bishop hoping to get their support.
  • We are working with the architects on more detailed plans for all our options so that we can move ahead as quickly as possible.

This was published in the Weekly Newssheet of 9 July.  The newsheet is available each Friday afternoon on the parish website . If you would like it to be emailed to you on Friday please contact the Parish Office

The Rebuilding of All Saints, the story so far….

All Saints church was gutted by fire on 22nd June 2015, so we have just marked the 2nd anniversary of this terrible event.

In the aftermath of the fire it took many months to clear away the debris and make the church safe and secure.

Immediately after the fire the parish received overwhelming support from people in our community and far afield.

Despite our never having launched an appeal, over £75,000 has so far been donated to the ‘All Saints Fund’.

An appeal has not been launched because All Saints was thankfully fully insured, and a ‘like for like’ rebuild of the church would be covered by insurance.

However, from the beginning the parish decided not simply to rebuild, but to build in a way that will ‘Honour the past and build for the future’.  We therefore set about asking the community what they would want from their church in future. Their responses formed a 56 page document.

It was quite clear from this response that people loved All Saints church but would want it to be a more flexible building in future, accessible to all, usable by a wide range of community groups and activities, and with improved site lines.

We then set about the task of appointing a firm of architects who could help us realise our vision for the rebuilding of All Saints. We eventually appointed Acanthus Clews Architects of Banbury.
Acanthus Clews drew up plans for five different ways we might meet our needs going forward:

  1. Rebuild exactly as the church was before the fire.
  2. Rebuild as was but with improved porches, significant internal improvements, and some new buildings attached to the church by a cloister and built in the church yard on the north side.
  3. All of the above, but with 2 internal piers removed in order to make more space and facilitate a nave altar.
  4. The removal of all internal piers in order to create an open space for worship, concerts, drama and a range of community activities.
  5. Rebuild the church, but then use it as a community space. In addition demolish the parish centre next door and build a new church in its place with all the facilities we are looking for.

After wide consultation and costing, the PCC agreed to pursue option 4 as its preferred option.

The Diocesan Advisory Committee, English Heritage, Victorian society, and others were then consulted about whether permission would be granted to go ahead with option 4.

It is clear that there would be significant opposition to the removal of piers from the nave of the church. Other options were more favourably received.

In the light of this the PCC now have to decide whether to continue with their preferred option, or modify their plans.

It is still our hope to provide Fleet with a church that will serve God and its people for generations to come.

  • This article was published in the July Parish Magazine

All Saints Fire 2nd Anniversary

Our day of prayer to mark the 2nd anniversary of All Saints fire is now underway. It would be great to see lots of people here to pray today for the rebuild but if you’re not able to make it you can still join us from home by using the attached prayer booklet.

If you come to the church you will find a number of different prayer stations with prompts for prayer – tactile things like sweets, bubbles and string, and also verses for meditation and space for reflection. The presentation of the plans for the building will be running continually in the hall and there will be refreshments in the coffee bar through until 3.30pm. The presentation of the plans for the building is also available online.

Some of the Crew who responded to the fire  from Fleet Fire Station joined us for a coffee and photo.

2 Years on from the All Saints fire, the crew from Fleet Fire Station join us for a coffee and photo.

All Saints Prayer Day, Thursday 22 June

PRAYER DAY – Thursday 22nd June, 9am-4pm.

All are invited to join in prayer for a short time on this day, the 2nd anniversary of the fire in All Saints Church. Prayer stations will be set up around the outside of the church and in the FPCC and sheets will be available for people to use if staying at home to pray. Please consider signing up to commit to a 15min slot during the day so that we can be sure that we have prayer cover for the whole time. The day will start with praying together at 9am and the rest of the day will be self-guided with materials provided.

All Saints Church – Trinity Sunday 2017

All Saints Update – June 2017

• Following widespread consultation, the PCC have agreed to rebuild All Saints in a way that will both honour our heritage, and provide a building that will resource the congregations and community of the future.
• With this in mind they have submitted draft plans to the DAC  (Diocesan Advisory Committee) and are waiting for a response as to
whether these plans are likely be permitted under ‘Faculty regulations’ (i.e. Church Planning law.)
• The DAC have up to this point been very supportive and encouraging, but are currently waiting for a response from English Heritage before they give us their formal advice.
• Meanwhile, the rebuilding group are working with Architects, Quantity surveyors, Conservators, and our insurers, to ensure that we are in a position to move forward quickly with the rebuilding project.

Artwork by our Junior Church brightens the fences around All Saints

Please continue to pray that in all this God’s will be done.