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.
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.
• 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.
Please continue to pray that in all this God’s will be done.
The work of erecting scaffolding at All Saints goes on. The ‘Top Hat’ temporary roof will go on very shortly.
We have now compiled a very comprehensive list of architects who will be invited to register an interest in the rebuilding work. Our vision statement will be going out to them very soon.
Year 5 at All Saints school are currently doing a project about the rebuilding. They will be visiting the site of the church on Wednesday, and will be conducting research amongst the public about the future use of the church.
Don’t forget the special Meeting on Saturday March 12th at 10.00am at P&J. Please note that this is not a consultation meeting like we had before, but an opportunity to ask questions and to hear in more detail how the project is proceeding.
Work has started on the removal of headstones from the churchyard. This is necessary to facilitate the erection of scaffolding and access by heavy vehicles. The work is being done by experienced stone masons and every care will be taken with both the removal and storage of headstones. Not all stones will be removed, but an area near the walls needs to be cleared to provide access and prevent damage to the stones themselves. If you know of anyone who has relatives buried in the churchyard, please let them know what we are doing and why. There is more information elsewhere on the website.
It may appear that there is very little happening right now but that’s not the case!
Behind the scenes there is much work going on in terms of arranging for the temporary roof, permission to move gravestones and provision for vehicular access – when these are all in place we will publish more info.
Our PCC meet on 18th January to further consider the vision for the future and we will circulate a document to our congregations and community following this meeting.
The PCC met on Saturday 28 November to consider the many responses (56 pages of A4) to our consultation exercise. This was a very successful meeting, led by the Holy Spirit, and a fairly clear way forward was agreed upon. A detailed report of this will be published in the near future.
The young man who pleaded guilty of starting the fire was sentenced on Friday 27 November. He was sentenced to 4 years in a youth offender institution followed by 3 years of supervision. Please continue praying for him, his family, and all who have been affected by the fire.
Work has started on the scaffolding to protect the church over the winter. The first stage completed is to protect the mural painting on the chancel arch (known as “noly, noly noly” due to the font shape of the h!)
Thank you to everyone who has attended our consultation sessions, or sent us their thoughts and ideas about the rebuilding. These are now being collated and we will shortly report back to you a summary of what people have been telling us.
If you would like to submit ideas in writing please do so to the Parish Office by Friday 16th October.