St Eval Churchroom Project
Some 2 years ago it was suggested by St Eval Council to St Eval Church PCC that funds were available from REG Denzell Downs, St Issey and St Tudy Wind Farm for projects that would benefit the local community. For many years prior to this St Eval PCC had been wanting to upgrade the water supply to the community hall know as the Churchroom from the unreliable well supply to either mains or a borehole. The well would frequently run out of water just in time for the annual Flower Festival! The Churchroom was also in need of renovation and repair along with a new roof so that it could be used to provide the venue for meetings, storage and of course the preparation and serving of refreshments for the church’s fund raising events into the foreseeable future. Based on this need the PCC submitted a successful bid through St Eval PC for the REG Denzell Downs grant of £15,293 and so the project commenced. The first step was the obtaining of planning permission from Cornwall Council. Once initial planning was approved we applied for more grants and we were generously supported by the Bedruthan Community Fund, the Maritime Air Trust and the Cornwall Community Foundation Trenouth Solar Fund. We also received very welcome and generous donations from individuals.
The architect’s drawings were provided by Giles Lovegrove of Coupdeville for free and we were lucky to find a Building Regulations Inspector Alex Gaylard of Assent Building Control who was happy to take on such a small project. Builders it seems are in high demand in this part of Cornwall at this time and we were extremely lucky to have Wayne Yabsley who is a Master Builder from Engollen agree to take on the major part of the work above the extension floor slab. He selected the local stone to ensure the very good match between the old and the new external walls and coordinated the work of Graham Barker‘s roofing team and Andrew Elderfield the electrician. The initial groundwork’s, footings and floor slab were completed by members of the PCC assisted by Rob Wilcox from Trenance and Terrance and Trevor Martyn from Little Trevisker.
Always under pressure from the ladies of the PCC to get the project completed in time for the Flower Festival Wayne and his team completed in time for Richard Wilson to refurbish the kitchen and provide it with a much needed water heater. We managed to decorate inside, fit new carpets (supplied at a good price by the Carpet Shop in St Columb) and have Aquasource commission the borehole water supply in time for the ladies to takeover and set up shop for the Flower Festival. Meanwhile Trevor Martyn completed the landscaping outside.
The project has thus been completed in time and already has met with widespread approval from the ladies! Their delight in more space to prepare the food, kitchen storage, a larger fridge and a continuous supply of hot water has been obvious. The new extension room is large, well lit and well insulated and will serve many purposes in the years to come. Wayne has done a superb job in blending the old and new and dealing with some tricky technical issues.
The PCC is hoping that the Churchroom will be used by community groups beyond the church. Already there is an established “Pilgrims’ Way” across Cornwall that includes St Ervan, St Eval and St Mawgan Churches. Now that the Churchroom has been modernised it can be used for overnight stops. Similarly, it is on offer to youth groups such as the Scouts, Guides and Cubs that might wish to camp on the church meadow but have a facility to fall back on in the event of bad weather. It would also be available for individuals who may want to hold a family or friends event . Perhaps with the meadow, our kitchen and the St Mawgan Eccentric Gentleman marquee team we could offer it up as a “straight from church to reception” venue. Please do contact the St Eval Churchwardens if you would like more details .
The PCC has now a busy time ahead fundraising to fill the gap between the cost of the project and the grants received. However, the project has proved that St Eval Church has the confidence to invest in the future and provide a facility for community use. We remain indebted to the grant providers, individual donations and our local businesses and craftsmen for their contribution to this successful project. Please do support the business and tradesmen mentioned above as they were outstanding and if you get the chance do mention to our grant providers how much the financial support was appreciated.
By Chris Moncaster, St Eval PCC Treasurer