Work underway for new church and houses in Lillington

Lillington Free church has now been demolished to make way for housing and a new place of worship for its congregation.

Lillington Free Church has been demolished to make way for housing. NNL-180327-221040009
Lillington Free Church has been demolished to make way for housing. NNL-180327-221040009

The old church building and the church room were deemed to be too big for the congregation and were becoming an issue to maintain.

The site is now being cleared and a new, but smaller, church building will be built there along with 25 affordable homes which include three one-bedroom apartments, three two-bedroom apartments, 12 two-bedroom houses, and seven three-bedroom houses.

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These properties would be available as shared ownership.

Parking on the site will cover 59 spaces, including 19 spaces specifically for the new church.

Members of the congregation had an input into designing the new church building which will include a worship area, church hall and space for a kitchen, creche, toilets, a committee room and a vestry.

All rooms are also planned to be accessible to those in wheelchairs.

The members of the church have also had an input designing the new building.

At the request of the church members, the developer will move the church closer to the neighbouring Holt recreational ground to ‘better engage with the local community’.

The final service at the old building was held in November with the Rev John Carrier, the first minister to preach at the church when it opened in 1966, leading proceedings.

The Rev James Church, the church’s current minister, has said: “It is an exciting time for Lillington Free Church as we look forward to building a new building that will serve the needs of the whole community, whilst we hope that our partnership with Orbit Housing will provide much needed excellent modern affordable housing in our community.

“We believe the new church will provide a welcoming and attractive place for the whole community - from parents, carers and toddlers, coming to Lillingtots on a Wednesday morning, and young people joining Rainbows, Guides and Brownies, or the Lillington Free Church Table Tennis Club, through to our community coffee mornings.

We also trust that our new church will continue to be a place where people will find support at those important moments in life, where their joys may be celebrated, their sorrows comforted, and where together we grow in character and faith.