Broken gutters, leaks and a damaged roof have led a landmark Salford church to be registered as ‘heritage at risk’ by Historic England.
Team Vicar for the church, Charlie Gorton, said: “The church is vulnerable and needs help.”
The 153-year-old church, located on Derby Road, is a Grade 2* building: a place of special interest due to its history and heritage. It was designed by famous architect Giles Gilbert Scott, who is known for creating the famous red telephone boxes.
Mr Gorton said: “Historic England are on board.”
“The gutters and the grates are what [they] are going to provide the money for,” he said.
Historic England will provide the church with £10,000 which will be used to fix the gutters and the leaks inside the building, however there is much more to be done.
“Because it’s such a historic building, you’ve got to get her right gear for it,” Charlie said. “You have to get an architect involved as well because it’s Church of England.” St Luke’s was also the location for the wedding of suffragette legend Emmeline Pankhurst, who lived in the area for 5 years.
They hope that, with help from Historic England, the English Heritage Lottery will fund the restoration of the church’s roof. These donations would reach up to £250,000 and would allow the church to be fully restored over the next five years or so.
Rev Gorton has been with St Luke’s for seven years and insists on the importance of the church to the community.
“It’s definitely well-loved and it’s very much a community church” he said.
The church also has a large hall which is open to the community, often host to different groups such as arts and crafts, theatre groups and food banks.
Charlie said: “the community are actually getting on board and fundraising for us!”
People in the local area have hosted jumble sales, Christmas fairs and the local school has organised a non-uniform day to contribute to, and spread awareness of the church, however these donations are used to cover the running costs and utilities of the building.
The church has even received interest from students, as members of Salford University have used the building to film and perform theatre productions.
“It’s well-loved,” he said. “It’s just falling apart.”