We are trying to make the office a better space for those who use it and those who might. To that end I began to go through some of the old files this afternoon and found some of the original minutes and letters dating back to 1999 when the first tentative steps were taken in the direction of re-ordering the church and developing the site as a whole.
I read wth interest details of a day spent with Richard Giles who some regard as a visionary when it comes to re-configuring places of worship but others as a kind of well meaning liturgical vandal. I saw the correspondence between the parish and the diocese, detailing how in the latter originally hoped to commandeer the bulk of the proceeds from the sale of the vicarage, until thwarted, with very good cause by Jamie Eastaugh and others. If the original plan had gone ahead St Barnabas would have had a nice new vicarage, but no funds to replace the halls and repair the church!
I was struck by the continuity in objectives though between 1999 and the years that followed.
Here are some high-lights from original list.
1) Improved, flexible and imaginative worship space.
2) liturgically led design and fiting out in keeping with St Barnabas’ tradition.
3) Flexible hall space.
4) Improved access.
5) Up-graded toilet and kitchen facilities.
6) Improved heating ad lighting.
7) Relandscaping church surroundings.
I don’t think that, collectively we have done too badly!