Churches and chapels can apply for ‘Treasure’ trove of grant funds

Churches and chapels here in need of repair or essential maintenance have until October 5 to apply for new grant funding.

Monday, 28th September 2020, 10:45 am
New grants for churches and chapels now available

Grants of up to £10,000 are available in the first round of funding from the National Churches Trust’s new Treasure Ireland project which is open to places of worship across the province.

The grants are available to churches and chapels of any Christian denomination that are open for regular worship.

Work must be to the main church building or an attached hall which must have been constructed as a place of worship at least 30 years ago.

Grants are available for work including: roof repairs, rainwater goods maintenance and repairs, lime mortar and masonry repairs, stonework repairs and repairs to window and door structures.

Treasure Ireland is a new project to support historic places of worship in Northern Ireland which will run for three years from 2020 - 2023.

In addition to grants for repairs, the project also offers help and advice with maintenance to help keep churches or chapels in good condition and so avoid having to carry out expensive repairs.

Treasure Ireland aims to increase the number of people visiting churches in Northern Ireland for days out or as part of a holiday.

Treasure Ireland is run by the National Churches Trust (www.nationalchurchestrust.org) which is the UK charity concerned with the protection and welfare of churches, chapels and meeting houses throughout the United Kingdom.

They aim to: provide grants for the repair, maintenance and modernisation of church buildings; act as a catalyst to improve and bring more resources to the management of church buildings; and, promote the value of church buildings to the community at large.

At least 100 churches will be added to the National Churches Trust’s ExploreChurches website, making it easy for visitors to discover the architecture and history of Northern Ireland’s faith heritage.

Claire Walker, Chief Executive of the National Churches Trust said: “If you are responsible for looking after a place of worship, Treasure Ireland will make it easier for you. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a serious impact on the finances of churches with many unable to raise money from worshippers, visitors or from the hire of church halls. Our new grants programme offers help with the cost of repairs and essential maintenance and will help keep the churches and chapels of Northern Ireland in good condition.”

Grant applications can be made online at www.nationalchurchestrust.org/treasure-ireland-grants

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