It’s great to be working with a new client in Bilborough, Nottinghamshire, just a mile down the road from the Wide Sky Design offices.
St Martin’s Church is a Grade II*listed building dating back to 1356 with renovation having taken place in Victorian times. But in recent years, like many older parish churches in troubled urban areas, it had fallen into disrepair. Local champion of the church, Hilary Wheat, is now realising her vision to restore the church to its former vibrant condition as well as to establish it as a focal point where the local community can address its own challenges such as poor education and health, and low employment.
St. Martin’s Heritage Trainees
A successful Heritage Lottery Fund application sees Hilary leading a team of volunteers in a restoration project that has seen the unexpected uncovering of some precious wall paintings by mid-20th century artist Evelyn Gibbs, believed to be the last surviving examples of her large scale work.
Evelyn Gibbs wall paintings at St Martin’s Church, Bilborough
It is exciting for us to be involved at the very beginning of their Hidden Treasures project, supporting what will be three years of community and heritage activities.
Right now we have two time-lapse cameras in place to capture the work that is being carried out. One looks down from the eaves, eight metres up, onto the floor of the church and will record the restoration activity, including the laying of a stone floor. The second, of course, is focused on those murals the restoration of which will be of national cultural interest.
The images will be used in the subsequent community projects and we will be creating a tablet-based app to interpret the history and life of the church. We’ll report back on progress.
Support St Martin’s
St. Martin’s has been shortlisted for an English Heritage Angel Award in the ‘Best Rescue or Repair of a Historic Place of Worship’ category. The winners, as determined by a judging panel, will be announced at a ceremony in London in November.