The foyer of St Mary's church contains an informative exhibition , showing the findings of the recent survey of the building. On display are a number of information boards, plus some of the large pieces of masonary which were removed from the roof, before they fell down. The steps needed to make safe and restore the church are now clear. Hopes are being put onto gaining a Heritage Lottery Fund Grant to pay for it.
I don't know if the Trust has been asked to provide support for the application, but I am sure we would give any support we can to maintain this building. Not only do we use it for our Heritage Centre, we see it as a key part of the historic market place, as well as being a place of worship.
It crossed my mind, as to whether it would be timely to ressurrect our plans to remodel the church to make it better suited to host comunity events, enlarge the heritage centre as well as preserve the churches role as place of worship. But, for the moment at least, it is probably best to focus on the immediate needs of preserving the fabric of the church. Perhaps the restoration of the church will help raise the buidling's profile and there will be interest then in widening it's role.
At the other side of the Market Place, the Bezier winde degustation (wine tasting) seemed to have been a great success. Lan and I certainly enjoyed it and went away with a couple of reds. I hope this will be the first of many such events. They add to the appeal of the market, without detracting from the core buiness of the stalls.
By the way, when you next visit the market, keep a look out for Market News. It includes a free to enter quiz where you could win £20.