Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust


September 11

St Peter’s Church, Hoyland: The church on the Hill

St Peter’s, Hoyland is a meticulously maintained Grade II listed church built in 1830 by Watson, Pritchett and Watson. The original light and lofty rectangular Low Church box survives but severe mining subsidence has transformed the interior, most recently in the 1990s.

This church is a great example of how an inventive transformation of the interior has ensured the building is wholly fit for purpose for the future.  A quirky vaulted ceiling has been installed to conceal the steel corseting of 1924. At the same time a coffee hub has been formed under the rear gallery and the gallery itself has been turned into a meeting-room, separated from the nave by glass partitions. The result is characterful , endearing  and well worth a visit!

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Posted in Grants, News

August 26

We must keep faith in our historic churches – Tom Ramsden, Chairman of YHCT

You may have seen alarming headlines decrying the ‘crumbling of our Cathedrals’ and the ‘crisis’ of an ageing population putting Britain’s churches at risk of disrepair and closure.

It is a fact that the number of people attending Church of England Sunday services falls year on year and this is the continuation of a trend seen over recent decades. These statistics reflect changes in modern society. We are becoming more secular – fewer people identify themselves as religious and fewer people identify themselves as being Christian.

The good news is that many places of worship, especially those in Yorkshire, are taking on board the need to ensure their church buildings have overlapping religious and community uses to ensure their future sustainability. They are opening up as spaces where playgroups meet, for food banks, hosting post offices, where concerts, talks and art exhibitions are put on and where drop-in sessions for the elderly and vulnerable are held.

This is where the Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust comes into play. It is thanks to the generosity of our many Friends and donors that we are able to help churches foot their repair and maintenance bills and be in a position to open up for wider uses.

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Posted in In the press, News

May 2

Ride +Stride Art Trail

If you are planning on taking part in Ride +Stride this year, why not consider following the ‘Sculpt – art in the churches’ trail?

Taking place on Saturday 14th September, Ride+Stride is a sponsored bike ride, walk or drive between churches, exploring and enjoying the countryside, towns and cities.  Participants help raise vital funds for the restoration and preservation of the our historic churches, chapels and meeting houses.

50% of the money you raise can be given to a church of your choice, the remaining goes to the Trust to help support the thousands of churches we have in the county.

The Sculpt project involves international and innovative artists, who have each created individual and unique, site-specific sculptures for seven churches on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales.  

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Posted in News, Uncategorized

December 5

Annual report

Please find a copy of the Trust’s latest annual report here.

You will see that during the year, the Trust converted to a Charitable Incorporated Organisation, which will modernise the administration and governance of the charity going forward.

During the year the Trust gave grants of £118,750 to 28 places of worship, helping support vital repairs and maintenance. It can only do this with the help of our friends and donors and we’d like to thank you for your continued support.

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Posted in Grants, News

October 11

Church maintenance, repair and replacement

Former Trustee and Grants Committee chairman, shares with us the importance of good maintenance and repair of church buildings:

“We construct buildings to create spaces protected from the extremes of weather. Even as the building envelope performs this role, its function causes degradation. Some materials and building elements have a short lifespan while others survive longer, but all have to be maintained, and even with the best maintenance virtually all will need replacement.

 Sometimes there is confusion about maintenance and repair; it may be thought that conserving a material will obviate the need for replacement. In reality, even well-maintained building elements will degrade and eventually need either replacement or protection. So looking after a church building properly means you have to think short, medium and long term – quite a tall order !

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Posted in News

September 7

Are you ready for Ride+Stride?


The stage is set for this year’s Ride +Stride on Saturday (8th September) and the forecast is promising.

Once again, many of our friends and supporters will be talking to their wheels and feet, visiting churches and raising much needed funds for places of worship in Yorkshire.

Geoff Taylor, from Kirby –in –Cleveland,  tells us about his plans for this year’s event:

“A group of us from Saint Augustines Kirkby- in -Cleveland have participated in the event for several years and had some great rides, I call our venture ‘Sprockets and Steeples’. This year is special for a couple of reasons. We have decided to ride from Whitby Abbey to Kirby, around 32 miles along the Esk Valley calling at churches along the way. The reason for this is that our two local churches at Ingleby Greenhow and Kirby ‘belonged’ to Whitby Abbey for 400 years until 1540 so it’s a reminder of that history. In addition a third church of our united benefice Kildale at which we shall call was the home of the Percy family who rebounded Whitby Abbey after the Norman Conquest.

The other special reason is that we recently held a specific fundraising effort for our hardworking vicar Anne Heading who has been with us for over eleven years and bought her a shiny new electric bike on which she whizzes around the parish without exhaust or exhaustion! Anne will be joining us for the latter part of the ride from Kildale to Kirby”

Good luck Geoff, and all the others taking part in Ride+Stride this Saturday. We thank you for your continued support.

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Posted in News

August 1

Can you spare some time to help us?

Ride and Stride is our annual sponsorship event. We are looking for someone to help us out in 2019 to strengthen the event and increase the amount of money raised.

You may love cycling, walking or visiting churches and have some ideas about how we can raise awareness of the event and reach new audiences.

It’s a fun day out where people get sponsored to visit as many places of worship as they can, either on foot, by bike or by car / public transport. The money raised is shared between the participants own church, and the YHCT.

Ride +Stride is a wonderful way to raise much needed funds and we grateful to our many dedicated supporters who take part each year. However, we know it could be even bigger and better!

Familiar with WordPress?

We are also looking for someone with experience in WordPress to help us tidy up our website. If you have skills in this area and think you may be able to spare a bit of your time to help us out, we would love to hear from you.

For further information about both roles, please contact Vanessa White on 07786 656883, vanbarassociates@gmail.com

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Posted in News

July 5

Ride +Stride stalwart fondly remembered

It is with great sadness that we heard about the passing of David Trow earlier this year. David was a long- time supporter of the Trust whose dedication to Ride and Stride over 40 years saw him cycling more than 1200 miles and raising an incredible £10,000.

David first got involved in supporting historic churches in Essex 40 years ago. Living in Great Waltham, nr Chelmsford, David was a keen member of the local cycling club and enthusiastically took part in Ride & Stride every year.

He and his wife moved back to Yorkshire in 1995 and settled nr Driffield.  For the past 23 years David continued to take part in R+S, clocking up hundreds of miles around the East Riding.

David’s approach was to aim to cycle around 30 miles and visit 10 churches, which was an incredible feat for a Man in his nineties.

In fact last year he fell off his bike during a training ride a week before the event, but undeterred he completed his ride a week later – finishing the last church on foot as his shoulder was so painful.

We are deeply indebted to David for the thousands of pounds he has raised over the years for the Yorkshire Historic Churches Trust and the final gift of a donation from his funeral collection.

It is thanks to the dedication and support of people like David that we are able to continue to offer vital funding lifelines to the many places of worship across Yorkshire, to help ensure they are repaired and maintained and able to be enjoyed and appreciated for many years to come.

   David raising money for the Essex Historic Churches Trust during the 1980s

 David as a young boy showing his love for cycling

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Posted in News

June 21

Ride and Stride family fun

Pictured (L to R) Licensed Reader Denise, Lucy Sturley, Thomas Sturley and Vicar Rev Jo. Lucy and Thomas had over a cheque for £101, money they raised for their local church, Holy Trinity in Knaresborough.

Proving that Ride and Stride is a day that can be enjoyed by all ages, the Sturley family, from Knaresborough, tells about their day taking part in Ride and Stride last year:

“Our day started grey and drizzly… hmmm… Waterproofs and sun cream were jammed into the rucksack, God loves an optimist! On the way to York we made a little detour to visit the church of All Saints in Long Marston. This church has an amazing story: around 600 years ago it was moved, stone by stone, about a mile and a half up the road following a breakout of the plague. That would be an unenviable task even in modern times but in the early 1400s it must have been a massive undertaking. The local people who were manning the church were very friendly and as the heavens had by this time really split open, we enjoyed their hospitality for almost half an hour! The church has some lovely round Saxon arches and by contrast a stained glass window that dates from WW1 and depicts a submarine in one of its panels.

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Posted in News

June 8

30th anniversary celebrations

Over 50 friends of the Trust gathered at Bishopthorpe Palace to celebrate its 30th anniversary with the Archbishop of York on Thursday 31st May.

Welcomed by Dr John Sentamu, Archbishop of York and President of the Trust, guests enjoyed refreshments and a tour of the palace.

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Posted in In the press, News

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