31 July 2017
It has been announced that Saint Andrew’s Church Heckington has received £10,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for an exciting project to ‘Reveal the Medieval Masterpiece’ that is the parish church of this Lincolnshire village. Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, and in partnership with Heritage Lincolnshire, the project will undertake vital development work to ‘achieve a long-term vision to transform this exciting, but undiscovered church, into a multi-use village asset, and promote its unique and historically significant character’ across the region and on a national level.
It is reported that St Andrew’s was built in 1320 on a regal scale, as a result of its early royal connections, leaving a small rural village with a church of almost cathedral proportions and decoration. The founders utilised the very best craftsmen of the day to construct a ‘truly remarkable church of enormous size and quality’, and the craftwork legacy of the masons, carvers, engineers and glaziers is greatly appreciated by locals, specialists and historians.
It has been said that the village, over the centuries, has been unable to sustain the upkeep of the building, and that St Andrew’s needs modern heating, lighting and refurbishment to make it usable as a multi-use facility for the village, and to promote its unique historical and architectural features.
National Lottery players’ support will allow the team of volunteers to work in partnership with Heritage Lincolnshire to complete vital development work to create a shared vision for the church, engage the local community, establish a Friends group, develop the volunteers’ skills through training and mentoring, and bring in additional advice to help develop new and exciting ways to ‘reimagine and interpret this wonderful space and its heritage’.
The project was launched at this year’s 150th Heckington Show, and, in speaking about this news, Lesley Pinchbeck, Churchwarden, has said: “This project is the catalyst for which Heckington has been waiting for centuries – where the creativity of the 14th century community meets and inspires that of the 21st.”
Alison Berwick, Heritage Lincolnshire, has commented: “We are delighted to be supporting St Andrew’s Church in developing their long-term visions for the church for the benefit of the whole community in Heckington. The church has so many rich and wonderful stories to tell and this project offers the potential for these to be developed for all to hear.”
Jonathan Platt, Head of HLF East Midlands, has said: “St Andrew’s in Heckington is a beautiful and unusual church, and we are delighted that National Lottery players have been able to provide the support necessary to develop plans for its future.”
Further information on the Heckington and Helpringham Group of Parishes may be found here.