Lockdown and other restrictions put the emergency brake on a lot of activity but it is good to see how people across the country are working out how to get their various shows back on the road.
Back in December, a group met in the White Lion to continue the ongoing discussions about the future of St Andrew’s. A wide selection of folk from the church and the wider community of Kildwick have been involved in these discussions, along with the church architect and a Diocesan adviser.
It was decided to set up a properly funded scoping project that would put us in a better position to plan out, with community involvement, a sustainable future for St Andrews. The first step towards this would be an application to the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) for funding and supporting this initial investigation. Two members (Tim and Louise) compiled and submitted a project enquiry and in early March received a positive response from NLHF in Manchester. They would not talk about specifics, but seemed to approve of the size and scope of the proposed bid which was, largely, to engage a suitably qualified project officer and to enable the appropriate professional work to be undertaken. As the enquiry says… “Not only will this project aim to open St Andrew’s doors, it also seeks to start to engage with the local primary school in enhancing the natural heritage within the cultural heritage setting of the church grounds. More importantly it will facilitate members of the local community, local businesses, and community groups in shaping the sustainable vision for St Andrew’s.”
Of course, at that moment, COVID happened and everything came to an abrupt halt.
The NLHF have responded to the pandemic by putting all new applications on hold and concentrating on emergency funding for currently and recently funded projects. It is said that the earliest that they will be open for new applications will be some time in October. In the current situation, that is bound to be a rather fluid date! A small group from St Andrew’s has met and it seemed prudent to move forward now so that we can build on the positive response from NLHF and have a properly worked-out application that will be ready to submit just as soon as the starting pistol is fired.
We need to “meet” online. As we learn to use these new digital tools, they become, in themselves, more useful. We will aim to think, too, about a strategy that includes funding and awareness raising as well as identifying the skills that each member of the group can bring to the table.
If you are interested in being involved, that would be great. Please get in touch!