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St Denys Church in Southampton handed £95,000 for repairs
WORSHIPPERS at a Southampton church are celebrating after being awarded a £95,000 grant for repairs.
St Denys Church has been standing in the heart of a Southampton community for more than 120 years but the Grade II-listed church in Dundee Road has fallen into such a bad state that worshippers can only use the main hall between April and October.
Now the church has been awarded £95,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund which will see repairs to the roof, windows, rainwater systems and stonework.
The church was built between 1868 and 1889, and designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott who previously designed St Pancras Station, the Albert Memorial in London and even the tallest building in the world in the 19th century – St Nicholas Church in Hamburg.
The essential repairs mean that the church can be used throughout the year as a venue for concerts and other events for the St Denys area and wider Southampton arts and cultural communities.
St Denys parish administrator Martin Smith, 48, from Priory Road, has been a regular at the church for more than 15 years.
He said: “The long-term goal is to get the church heated, so worshippers can use it. These repairs are the start of that.
“What we want to do is open this church more regularly for heritage visitors. It is vitally important to us to get repairs and for the St Denys community by having different events here.
“It has been in need of repair for more than ten years. From the outside it won’t look any different – but it will give us confidence in welcoming people in.
“We are delighted to be recognised as a worthy cause to get money.”