Village unites after devastating fire destroys 800-year-old church

Daily Echo: Village unites after devastatin fire destroys 800-year-old church Village unites after devastatin fire destroys 800-year-old church

A HAMPSHIRE village has united in support of their 800-year-old church which was destroyed by fire.

St Peter’s Church in Ropley, near Alresford, went up in flames on Thursday, leaving the roof, bell tower, medieval architecture and doorways completely devastated.

Last night heartbroken villagers rallied round to think up ways to restore the historic building as investigations into what caused the blaze continued.

The Friends of St Peters (FOSP) annual meeting had coincidently already been planned to take place, but the priority for all those attending was to ensure the future of their church.

The group are responsible for fundraising to help renovate and restore the old church, and was formed 32 years ago to help re-roof the grade II listed building.

They met in a resident’s garden.

Alison Wood, chairman of FOSP for five years, said: “It’s about people coming up with ideas and letting them talk about the disaster.

“Of course we are devastated, but we are a great village and pull together if something needs to be done.”

She added: “Everyone wants to get started and I’m saying ‘hold on and see what we are able to do first’. People are very upset, but are being very positive too.”

The group will feed their ideas back to Rev Royston Such, vicar of the church.

Before any decisions are made, Alison says the building must be assessed to see if the remaining stone walls are safe enough to build on.

Paying tribute to the villagers’ resolve, Tana Riviere said: “People have been wonderful, so supportive and heart-stricken themselves – it has been very touching.

“If you can say anything good has come from a tragedy it’s people’s recognitions and responses.”

The investigation into what caused the fire is continuing.

Comments (3)

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6:42pm Fri 20 Jun 14

djbon87 says...

tragic news, but lets not forget the many churches that were destroyed during the world war.
tragic news, but lets not forget the many churches that were destroyed during the world war. djbon87
  • Score: -3

7:05am Sat 21 Jun 14

skeptik says...

An atheist myself but still saddened to see 800 years of history gone so quickly - the nations churches from many eras - with various forms of architecture also in some cases spanning centuries in the one building - maybe Phoenix like from the ashes but it can never be as was, so sad.
An atheist myself but still saddened to see 800 years of history gone so quickly - the nations churches from many eras - with various forms of architecture also in some cases spanning centuries in the one building - maybe Phoenix like from the ashes but it can never be as was, so sad. skeptik
  • Score: 1

8:42am Sat 21 Jun 14

Charlie Bucket says...

djbon87 wrote:
tragic news, but lets not forget the many churches that were destroyed during the world war.
What relevance do they have? Whenever someone is assaulted, do you turn up and say "sorry you got assaulted, but lets not forget those injured in the war"?
[quote][p][bold]djbon87[/bold] wrote: tragic news, but lets not forget the many churches that were destroyed during the world war.[/p][/quote]What relevance do they have? Whenever someone is assaulted, do you turn up and say "sorry you got assaulted, but lets not forget those injured in the war"? Charlie Bucket
  • Score: 6

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