The historic Central Hall Methodist Church, in The Strand, Longton is to be refurbished in as part of a project to improve the town’s heritage appeal.
The church will have its heritage features restored as part of the scheme to renovate the town’s architectural gems. As part of the works, which are due to start on Monday 16 January, the windows and canopies will be restored, the sandstone faÃƒ§ade will be renovated and underused rooms will be brought back in to use to allow extra community classes and groups to take place at the community facility.
The work is part of a series of projects to restore heritage buildings in Longton through the Longton Heritage Partnership. Work has already started on the Victorian Market hall with shop fronts refurbished and a new illuminated metallic market sign installed.
Councillor Ruth Rosenau, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for regeneration, said
Longton has a strong architectural heritage and this project is helping to restore the exterior of some of the town’s most historical buildings. The Methodist Hall is well used by the community and has a long historic connection with the town. The work will repair the front stained glass windows and restore the intricate canopy designs which will bring the building back to its former glory.
Overall, around £750,000 is being invested in Longton through the Longton Heritage Partnership. The partnership is funded by Stoke-on-Trent City Council and English Heritage.
Work on the Longton church hall is also supported by Staffordshire Environmental Fund via the Landfill Communities Fund and a variety of other partners including the Joseph Rank Trust.
Other works completed in the town through the scheme include work on Goslings Butchers on The Strand and the reinstatement of new cobbles along the historic route of Handcart Lane.
During 2012 around 10 further buildings are expected to benefit from the scheme.
Tim Johnston, Planning Director for the West Midlands at English Heritage, said
The start of grant-aided work on Longton’s Central Hall Methodist Church is great news. It is an outstanding building at the heart of the local community. This is a key moment in the continuing success of the Longton Heritage Partnership.
John Dutton, chief executive of Staffordshire Environmental Fund, said
The project clearly meets the prime objectives of the Staffordshire Environmental Fund in that it will give benefit to the community and the environment as well as being sustainable.
Central Hall Methodist Church, in Longton conservation area, dates back to the mid 19th century with extensions added in the 1920s and 1930s.