THE diocese of London is planning to
establish a church in a new development in Tottenham, where last
summer's riots broke out (News, 12
The Bishop of Edmonton, the Rt Revd Peter Wheatley, intends to
establish a Bishop's Mission Order under which the church will
operate in Hale Village, a new regeneration development. It is
situated on a former industrial site, opposite the Ferry Lane
Estate, where Mark Duggan was shot by police last year. A priest
will be appointed to lead the church.
The plans for the new church have been drawn up by a steering
group, which is chaired by Bishop Wheatley, and comprises local
clergy; the Archdeacon of Hampstead, the Ven. Luke Miller; and the
head of strategic development for London diocese, Matthew Girt.
The diocese has negotiated with the London borough of Haringey,
and Lee Valley Estates, the land-owners, to construct a new
building in Hale Village. Work on the building is expected to be
completed by the end of 2014. An interim church and community
centre will open in October this year.
A missioner for London City Mission (LCM), and his wife, have
begun outreach work in Hale Village, after London diocese signed a
partnership agreement with LCM.
Mr Girt said that the new church would not be a church plant,
where "people come in from another church, or several churches. . .
This is the establishment of a new church . . . will] build
community and . . . build church at the same time".
He said that the plans were drawn up before the riots, but "if
we hadn't planned to do it before the riots, we would be running
around trying to work out how to do it now."
The initiative had not been "planted from outside" by the
diocese, he said, but was "locally grown" by churches in the area.
The congregations of St Anne's, Tottenham; Holy Trinity,
Tottenham; and St Mary the Virgin, Lansdowne Road, had been
"engaged from day one".
On Sunday, a "service of peace" will be held at All Saints',
Peckham, almost a year after a similar service was held in the wake
of the riots.
The chief executive of the Christian charity XLP, Patrick
Regan, will speak at the service. He said: "The service this year
will continue to pray for peace, but we will also look at ways
[that] we as individuals and organisations can bring hope for the
future to our communities and young people - giving them something
to live for.
"If your life is shaped only by a combination of poverty, poor
housing, family breakdown, educational failure, crime, gangs, and
unemployment, then you can easily see why young people lose any
hope for the future. This is why some people have written off this
generation. However, I refuse to believe this is a lost