Fears for future of Barrow Hill’s historic church and ‘architectural gem’

St Andrews church.
St Andrews church.

The future of a historic church and ‘architectural gem’ in Barrow Hill has been plunged into question.

St Andrews, a Grade II listed church on Station Road, may be forced to close its doors after 124 years after church leaders revealed they had ‘run out of money’.

A message from team vicar Father Adrian Arnold to residents reads: “After many years of struggling to keep going, the problems with the building are so huge that the small congregation believe it is no longer viable or sustainable.

“We cannot see how we can continue to keep the church open.”

The Victorian church is of architectural note as it was the first commission of Sir Raymond Unwin and his first collaboration with his future business partner, Barry Parker.

Christian and non-religious residents alike have lamented the potential loss of St Andrews.

Craig Wilson said: “I’m at a loss for what we can do.

“It would be hypocritical of me to suddenly start using the church to worship something I don’t believe in.

“I love the history and the architecture of the place. I’d happily go in and pay in money each week just to see it survive.”

Kim Sellers said: “Let’s gets bums on seats, maybe if people went to church like they did years ago and made it a community again then these things wouldn’t happen.

“Let’s help keep this part of Barrow Hill’s history going.”

The Church of England estimates that around 20-25 churches are closed across the country each year.

Closed churches are often found a suitable new use and developed into places of worship by another Christian body, community centres, flats or offices.

There will be a public meeting to discuss St Andrews’ future at the church on Saturday, January 26 from 10.30-11.30am.