Major refurbishment for historic St Lawrence Church, Ipswich
£100,000 makeover for church in the heart of Ipswich centre
Medieval St Lawrence church, in the heart of Ipswich, is looking spic and span again after a £100,000 makeover.
The Ipswich Historic Churches Trust project, with the support of a business grant, is now complete.
The Grade II* listed St Lawrence Church is part of a rich heritage of historic churches remaining in the town centre, and is currently used as a cafe operated by Realise Futures, the social enterprise company.
The renovation project included repairs and renewals to brickwork, stonework and buttresses to helpp secure the future of the building.
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The six month renovation was supported by a grant of £65,000 from the community funds of Viridor, the recycling and waste treatment company.
John Field, chairman of the Ipswich Historic Churches Trust, said: “It is looking great again.
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“This is a beautiful church, one of many in the town.
“It is nice to see it done.
“It is quite good now.
“We are very grateful for the support of Viridor. It has enabled us to do much more than we could have done.
“It is a special building, and it needs to be safe for the future.”
Peter Brooks, chairman of the trust’s buildings sub-committee said it was a joint project by the trust and Viridor.
St Lawrence Church is a special church, and home to the oldest church bells - that are still rung - in the world.
They are known as the Wolsey bells, because they would have been rung when Cardinal Wolsey lived in the town.
Four the bells date from 1450 with a fifth added later, cast in 1480 and they still have their original clappers.
It is believed that Wolsey’s uncle commissioned one of the bells.
The historic bells are rung every Wednesday lunchtime and also for some other special days during the year.
John Field and Peter Brooks met up with borough council conservation officer Mike Taylor and Sandy Martin, representing the Viridor grants committee in Suffolk, to inspect the completed work.