We have landed our first major funding boost since launching a fundraising campaign last year to re-configure its building as a community resource.
In the month of its 25th anniversary, St Peter & St John’s church in Clifton Road, known locally as PJs, has been offered just over £45,000 from WREN’s FCC Community Action Fund for Phase 1 of project Welcome. The funding will help create a new toilet block which is the first step towards opening up the original front entrance of the church. This has been blocked up since 1984, when the church hall facilities where incorporated into the existing church building after a fire destroyed the original church hall.
Project Welcome aims to transform this church hall space into a community resource for the Clifton area of Rugby, which currently does not have a community hall.
PJs minister Rev Sheila Bridge said, “PJs is the only community building in this part of Rugby. We have a great community space that we know people would like to make better use of. But the toilets are horrible and the entrance is unwelcoming. Thanks to WREN, we hope to reach our fundraising target of £100,000 for the first phase by September. It’s 25 years this month since St Peter’s merged with St John’s. Many local people have fond memories of the church before the fire, so it’s very fitting that we should mark this by re-positioning the church at the heart of the community, which is where it should be.”
Rev John Burniston and Rev Sheila Bridge
Past and present Vicars of St Peter and St John’s Church
Joe Newby, WREN’s grant manager for Warwickshire, says: “We’re delighted to be supporting St Peter & St John’s ‘Project Welcome’ and pleased our funding will help to revitalise this valuable and much needed community space. WREN is always happy to consider grant applications for projects that benefit local communities and we’re looking forward to this one having a positive impact very soon.”
WREN is a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community projects from funds donated by FCC Environment through the Landfill Communities Fund.
A special service was held to mark PJ’s 25th anniversary and the launch of Phase 1 of Project Welcome. A special guest at this service was Rev John Burniston, who was Vicar at the time of the merger.
Building work for Phase 1 - the new toilet block - is expected to start in the Autumn and take around 3 months to complete. Fundraising will continue for Phase 2 – re-opening the main door and improving the interior layout - and for Phase 3 – for a smaller community room on the first floor.
St Peter & St John church. The main door of the church was blocked up in 1984 when the church was re-ordered to create an integral church hall at one end of the building. Behind the bricked up door, the porch area was used for a toilet block. Sheila says, “At the time, this must have seemed like the best solution and decisions had to be made quickly following the sudden loss of our old church hall through a fire. But today, many people report that they can’t find their way in or that they thought we were closed’.
St John’s church in Cambridge Street closed and merged with St Peter’s church in Clifton Road on 28th June 1992.
WREN is a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community projects from funds donated by FCC Environment through the Landfill Communities Fund. Since 1998, WREN has granted over £200m to more than 7,000 projects which benefit people living within 10 miles of a FCC Environment landfill site. For more information please visit www.wren.org.uk
FCC Environment is the leading UK waste and resource management company and is part of a global group with a strong heritage in providing services for communities and business. Its vision is to be the environmental company of choice, delivering change for a sustainable future. It employs 2,400 people and operates more than 200 facilities across England, Scotland and Wales. FCC Environment donates the LCF tax credits that are generated by its operations to WREN, in order to add value to the environmental and social infrastructure of the communities around landfill sites. www.fccenvironment.co.uk
The Landfill Communities Fund - any waste that is discarded which cannot be reused, reprocessed or recycled may ultimately be disposed of in a landfill site. To encourage the re-use, recycle and recovery of more value from waste and use more environmentally friendly methods of waste disposal, Landfill Tax is charged on each tonne of waste sent to landfill. Landfill Operators (LOs) are able to redirect a small proportion of landfill tax liability (currently 6.8%) to support a wide range of community and environmental projects in the vicinity of their landfill sites through the Landfill Communities Fund (LCF). The LCF is regulated by ENTRUST on behalf of HM Revenue & Customs, and the projects are delivered by enrolled Environmental bodies (EBs). Since its inception in 1996, over £1 billion has been spent on more than 32,000 projects across the UK. For further information, please visit www.entrust.org.uk see HMRC’s general guide to Landfill Tax or