Health and wellbeing

Funding level: £10,001 to £25,000


St Mark’s church is a simple building with Nave and Chancel. There is a Porch to the South-West, a Vestry to the North of the chancel and a gallery to the West. The Nave is fitted with pews. The church does not have level access, with three steps up into the Porch and four to the Vestry, although temporary ramps are available. There are no toilet facilities within the church. The Hall has toilets and there are two external toilets on the route to the Hall, but these are not fit for use and down two steps.
A time of fellowship is encouraged following the Sunday service, and people gather in the cramped space to the rear of church where refreshments are available. Hot drinks are prepared from table-mounted water boilers, with associated health-and-safety risks. Water boiling starts just before the end of the service, with associated unwanted noise.
There is nowhere suitable for small informal meetings or for private conversation and prayer.
Recently we have Sunday services where there were two wheelchairs and two buggies in church, which caused some chaos. Wheelchair-users have to sit at the front or the very back. Not only was it awkward for them and the parents, it prevented dignified movement through the church, since there is only one, relatively narrow central aisle.
The church has considered these various needs and agreed the following is required:
1. A disabled-friendly access route into church to help wheelchair-users, the elderly, parents with buggies, funeral processions, etc.
2. A modern WC, accessible to all.
3. A kitchen for the preparation of hot drinks and snacks.
4. A meeting area to accommodate twenty people. This would allow fellowship after services and could also accommodate small meetings, groups, PCC meetings, etc.
5. Space for buggies and wheelchairs.
This is not just a wish-list; they are all necessary improvements to assist the church in its worship and mission. We are looking to become a “Child-friendly church” and a “Disabled-friendly church”.
Difficulties in meeting the need
It is impossible to achieve these improvements without making changes to the building. St Mark’s is a small building and there simply isn’t enough space to allow for reasonable fellowship and refreshments, let alone toilets.
The proposal is to extend the building.
This seems the most appropriate solution. The church is surrounded by graveyards except for the area immediately to the north, bounded by the Nave and the Vestry.
An extension here would accommodate the various needs of the church:
o Level access into the church for wheelchair-users, arriving mainly from the car park to the North. This would also assist funeral processions.
o An accessible toilet, fully compliant with modern legislation;
o A kitchen area for safe and hygienic preparation of refreshments;
o A meeting space for fellowship, small meetings, etc;
o Adequate space for parking of buggies, etc.
This option would allow the requirements to be met without affecting the existing interior.
These improvements will help the whole community.

PCC of St Mark's Church Scarisbrick

Moment of Pride

I am proud of the project because it will help the whole community not church church-goers.
Many other groups use the church currently, local schools, Lunch Clubs, Social Clubs, a Youth group, church groups and concerts/events. The addition of toilets, kitchen and a community room will really us.

Location: Scarisbrick