Looking to the future...
We are nearly there!
We have raised c £160,000 of a £185,000 total. Please help us raise the last £25k
Everybody recognises St Thomas'. A couple of years ago, when our clock went wrong, we were blamed for people being late for work. We have hundreds of visitors (yes, we've counted) every week. But now we need your help. We have no government funding, and we are not a parish church, so cannot ask those living round about. Please read on for details...
Here at St Thomas', we have the best location in Newcastle, a wonderful, small but committed, congregation, and a large amount of hope and prayer. We believe our building could be used by many more people, for the greater good of the whole community.
The first part of this was completed in May 2014: We have re-furbished the room, now re-named "The Herman Schier Vestry", which is available for letting out to groups. Please do ask - good rates are available. If we let this space out at a commercial rate, we can use the profits, after expenses, to help community groups use the space which they otherwise couldn't afford. We already host Alcoholics Anonymous, AlAnon, Tyneside Claimants Union, asylum seeker groups, Movement 4 change, and "Make Poverty History" as well as numerous one-off events.
The next stage was the heating. In February 2014 the boiler gave out. We needed a replacement and after consultation opted for a wood pellet boiler, which reduces our carbon footprint significantly. We are the first building in the centre of Newcastle to do this. It is very exciting, and we're convinced it's the right thing to do. The boiler was installed in March 2015, and we held a "church-warming party" to celebrate. All those who had helped us, advised us, and those who'd continued to support us even throughout the cold winter, were invited.
In November 2015 we heard that we had been given a "first round pass" Heritage Lottery Fund award. This means we can now begin to carry out more substantial repairs and new developments: on the roof and the toilet facilities. It has taken us until March 2017 to complete the second round application, but that has now gone in, and we are hopeful that they will fund about 60% of the "delivery phase" of the works. Together with a successful application to the National Churches Trust, who are giving us £20,000, we are nearly there. It would be really good to be able to do the roof this summer (starting in July), and install toilets after that. But that depends on our raising the final £25,000.
St Thomas' will remain first and foremost a church - but we are restoring the church to its place at the centre of the community - a facility which everyone can use. We have a great reputation in this city for being an inclusive church - open to all - strong on social justice, and hosting discussion. We welcome interfaith dialogue, and people from all parts of the Christian spectrum to speak and debate here.
Please support us in the next stage of our mission
(Donations always welcome: payable to "St Thomas the Martyr Trust" which is the Building Fund - so the money won't go on general church expenses)
For God, for the city, for the future