In 2004 St Ambrose Parochial Church Council (PCC) asked Architects Grimshaw Townsend Limited of Accrington to look at ways of modernising and redeveloping the existing Church buildings to bring them up to the 21st century for the use of the local community and the parishioners.
The Architects put forward a number of proposals. At that stage the PCC opted to construct a new building linking the church and the main hall, upgrade and refurbish the main hall area including the demolition of the annexe to create additional car parking space.Work progressed towards this goal, with funding being sought from public subscription and charitable grants. The Project, to be successful needed to obtain funding from the Big Lottery Fund. We managed to get to the final stage, having delayed the project for 2 years whilst going through the process. We were unsuccessful and the cost of the project had risen from the original estimate of £750 Thousand to a figure beyond our means of £1.3 Million.
The PCC took the decision to proceed with the Annexe Refurbishment and the extension of the the Vestry. JA Kneen (Developments) Ltd were selected as our contractor. A formal Sod cutting ceremony was held on 2nd September 2009 with David Burrow MP and the Mayor, Donald Parkinson. Every body who has seen the work has been very impressed by its quality, and the flexibility our contractors have adopted, allowing the halls continue to function, whilst complying with all the Health and Safety regulations. The Hall Project has finished, our thoughts are now on how to maximise the use of these beautiful facilities for the local business and social communities.We are also hoping to refurbish the kitchen in the near future.
In the autumn of 2008 the Project team devised a new approach which would improve the facilities by modernising them and improving what we currently have. The changes will also enable us to make the Church and its halls comply with the Disabled Discrimination Act. New Plans were drawn up and Planning permission was sought from South Ribble Borough Council.
We were pleased to welcome the Bishop of Burnley to formally re-open the Halls on Saturday 1st of May.
Thanks to lots of hard work by the kitchen committee and especially Brian Taylor, as well as lots of fundraising, the new kitchen is complete.
It can now be used to cook meals (by people with the necessary certificate).
The Project we are undertaking is the upgrading of the internal fabric of the Church. This includes painting the building, replacing the old lighting with modern new efficient lights and adding a modern Audio Visual system
The initial plan was to start the work in May with the Church being shut for 3 months until 19th of August, with Church Services taking place in the Halls4All. The Covid-19 Pandemic and the resulting lockdown forced a re-plan. The new plan saw 55 tons of scaffolding being erected so the lighting and painting could be completed this was achieved 2 weeks early. The Church has reopened for services. The Audio Visual installation will take place in the first week o October.