From Mr Ian Morrison
Sir, - The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) warmly welcomes the
Chancellor'sannouncement in the Budget of an additional £20 million
for cathedrals to help with essential maintenance and repairs (News,
Cathedrals of all denominations display outstanding
architectural ingenuity and craftsmanship and have been the setting
for great moments in our history. They are appreciated by millions,
regardless of faith or background, and they play a central part in
the cultural, social, and economic life of this country.
Your report implies that HLF does not fund fabric repairs to
cathedrals; but this is not the case. Over the years, HLF has
awarded more than £69 million to cathedral projects, £40 million of
which has been spent solely on urgent repair work. Only last week,
HLF committed £233,900 to Hereford Cathedral for the conservation
of the medieval St John's Walk cloister, its monuments and
lapidarium. In recent months we have committed £4.8 million to
support the essential repair work at Guildford which will enable it
to continue serving the community.
These are just two of several other significant repair projects
supported by HLF in recent times, including the great east window
at York, the library and crypt at Rochester, and the presbytery
roof and clerestory windows at Winchester.
HLF will continue to help invest in these most precious
buildings and ensure that they are protected for future
generations, and we will work in tandem with the new fund announced
by the Chancellor to ensure support is targeted where it is most
needed and where it will make the most difference.
Head of Historic Environment
Heritage Lottery Fund
7 Holbein Place
London SW1W 8NR
From Claire Walker
Sir, - Latest statistics from the Church of England showing that
church attendance has been stable for the past decade (News,
28 March) follow on from data released in 2013 pointing to an
increase in the number of people worshipping in cathedrals.
There are a number of factors that have contributed to the
growth of worship at Cathedrals. These include improving welcome
and hospitality, increasing civic profile, and engaging culture and
Over the past decade, funding by the National Churches Trust, an
independent charity that receives no financial support from
Government, has enabled more than 2000 churches, chapels, and
meeting houses to repair roofs and stonework and to install modern
facilities, such as cafés, lavatories, and up-to-date heating.
Our experience is that making churches attractive places where
people can be made welcome both spiritually and materially enables
them to attract new visitors, some of whom, if not already
worshippers, may well become part of the church community.
The National Churches Trust warmly welcomes the announcement of
£20 million of funding for cathedrals in the 2014 Budget. Many of
the UK's other 47,000 Christian places of worship are also,
however, in need of significant financial support to pay for
repairs and modernisation.
Over the coming years, we will continue to play our part in
keeping these churches alive.
National Churches Trust
31 Newbury Street
London EC1A 7HU