Benington Community Heritage Trust secures HLF investment

All Saints Church, Benington Credit: Rebecca Tate

The Trust, which is based in the village of Benington, near Boston, Lincolnshire, will use the grant to restore and re-open the closed church of Benington All Saints as a community, events and heritage centre to be known as The Beonna at All Saints.

The project will begin with essential conservation work on this Grade I listed building which is over 800 years old and of national significance. Work will follow to adapt All Saints so that it will provide a highly attractive venue suitable for the 21st century and beyond.  Work will begin in April 2016 and the Beonna Centre will open early in 2017.

A very diverse range of activities are planned for the Beonna Centre including a community café, clubs and classes for all ages and the staging of events such as concerts, exhibitions and conferences.  There will be a wide variety of opportunities for volunteers to become involved whatever their interests.  These opportunities will range from a chance to learn traditional building and other heritage skills to helping with all aspects of the new centre.  These opportunities are available now and there will be free training if required.  The Trust warmly welcomes all enquiries.

Commenting on the award Kevin Pinner, Chairman of Benington Community Heritage Trust, said: “We’re delighted that HLF has given us this support.  All Saints is a very beautiful building which has been at the heart of the community for over 800 years. Now we will be able to give it a sustainable future so it can continue to play an important part in the lives of present and future generations.  We are very grateful to all those who have helped us achieve our goal, especially the Churches Conservation Trust, the Diocese of Lincoln and the Architectural Heritage Fund, their support has been invaluable.”

“…this investment will not only conserve a unique building of national importance but also affect transformative change in the lives of local people.”Crispin Truman, CEO at Churches Conservation Trust

Crispin Truman, CEO at Churches Conservation Trust, said: “The Churches Conservation Trust is delighted with the news that Benington Community Heritage Trust has received a second-round award of £1.8million from HLF in support of the Beonna project. The Trustees have worked hard to secure this investment which will not only conserve a unique building of national importance but also affect transformative change in the lives of local people. The CCT fully supports the Trustees plans to reinstate vital support services for the young and elderly back into the community – via the Beonna – and will continue to support this enterprising community as they embark on the next stage of the project.”

Vanessa Harbar, Head of HLF East Midlands, said: “All Saints is an important building with a long and distinguished history. This National Lottery investment will give it the new lease of life that it deserves and give the people of Benington a much-needed new community hub for everyone to use and enjoy.”

Notes to Editors

Benington Community Heritage Trust (BCHT) was formed in 2007.  The Trust is a registered charity and a member of the Association of Building Preservation Trusts.  There are 7 Trustees, all but one are residents of Benington, Lincolnshire. The Trust has received support and assistance from the Diocese of Lincoln, the Church Commissioners and the Churches Conservation Trust. More information can be found on the BCHT website.

Further information

Mrs Judith Crowe, Benington Community Heritage Trust, on tel: 01522 807054, mobile:: 07407086919 and email: jbc43@btinternet.com 

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