Weʼre raising £33,000 to refurbish the tower window and the west window at St Laurence's Church, Chorley
- St Laurence's Church, Chorley, Lancashire
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ST LAURENCE'S CHURCH is situated in the centre of Chorley; there has been a church on this site since Anglo Saxon times. Its fifteenth century tower is by far the oldest building in the town and for some hundreds of years it was the centre of local administration. This long tradition of community service continues with weekly OPEN TABLE providing free meals for the homeless and others in need. We also provide a Christmas lunch each year for those who may not otherwise have a hot meal and those who may spend Christmas alone.
THE FRIENDS OF ST LAURENCE is an autonomous group that aims to raise funds to support the Church in its mission to engage with the local community, providing a range of facilities and services that everyone can use. Projects involve maintaining the fabric of the Church and its unique collection of stained glass and other artefacts which are integral to Chorley’s history and to improve facilities that we can offer to local organisations enabling St Laurence’s to continue its role as an essential hub for a dynamic and expanding community.
Projects supported by the Friends are additional to the routine building maintenance that is the responsibility of the Parochial Church Council; we raise finance to do things that are beyond the resources of the current congregation.
St Laurence's stained glass windows are an important element in creating a unique atmosphere and sense of mystery; their original purpose was to act as visual aids for preachers addressing semi-literate congregations, illustrating Bible stories and providing prompts for sermons. By way of contrast, clear glass ensures that interiors remain light and airy in contrast with the oppressive gloom of some continental counterparts. The mix of stained glass and clear glass is an essential feature of English Parish Churches and our Church boasts a remarkable range of glass from different periods and in different styles. The glass is an important asset in Chorley’s cultural heritage and needs to be looked after.
TOWER WINDOW. The Belfry is on the first floor of the Tower looking out over Park Road towards the Town Hall. The window with four lancet lights was designed by Henry Hughes in 1890 and include a notable depiction of the Virgin and Child in soft yellow colours. The inner lancets were rebuilt in 1998 but the outer pair are bowed and leaking and need to be replaced. The rainwater dripping on to the interior of the window is gradually eroding the images so the clear definition and vibrancy of the colour is in danger of being lost.
WEST WINDOW This window with five lancets is fitted with diamond leaded clear glass with smaller glass panels between the elaborate tracery at the head. It has great character and is an important source of light for the Church. Metal dowels in the stone have corroded and the tracery is cracking and joints coming apart; if the window is to be preserved in its present form the tracery must be removed and rebuilt using new stone and stainless-steel pins.
Estimated cost for refurbishment of the tower window is £8,000 and for the west window £25,000
By supporting this appeal for crowdfunding you can make an important contribution to the window project.
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