Grant for church renovation work

Committee members (from left to right) John Brooke, Angela Monaghan, Ian Philp (Chair) and Mike Wood in St. Matthew's Churchyard, Lightcliffe.
Committee members (from left to right) John Brooke, Angela Monaghan, Ian Philp (Chair) and Mike Wood in St. Matthew's Churchyard, Lightcliffe.
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The Friends of St. Matthew’s Churchyard, Lightcliffe, has received £14,700 from the Heritage Lottery Fund for the sympathetic renovation of the old churchyard on Wakefield Road.

Led by volunteers, the project will create a peaceful, welcoming space in the middle of Lightcliffe that can be enjoyed by all the local community.

Over the next two years, The Friends group will use the Heritage Lottery funding to clear overgrown areas, improve paths, install information boards and seating, create trails around the churchyard to help visitors discover more about the wildlife and history of the churchyard and run educational events.

The group will also aim to encourage links with local schools, enhance the natural habitat and uncover and record all the memorial stones.

The group will run volunteer work parties every third Sunday in the month, plus a range of other activities and events throughout the year.

They will also work with The Friends of Friendless Churches to improve the iconic grade II listed tower, which is all that remains of the Old Church of St. Matthew, built in 1775.

Commenting on the award, Friends Chairman Ian Philp said: “We are thrilled to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund.

“This old churchyard deserves to be cared for.

“The Heritage Lottery funding will make a huge difference and we can’t wait to get on with delivering our plans.”