Eaton & Cringleford

Stained glass windows returned to former glory at Eaton church

Just Regional
May 29, 2014 3 mins read

A campaign to see the windows at Christ Church in Eaton returned to their former glory has finally been realised just over a year after fundraising began.

The aptly named “Be a Pane” campaign raised an impressive £65,000 through sponsorship of sections of the windows as well as raising money through an open gardens event and a Christmas flower arranging demonstration.

“We became aware of the problems in 2011 and particularly the rapid deterioration of the west window due to the very windy conditions over the last winter,” said fundraising leader John Brydon.

“The estimated cost of restoring this window, the other smaller window at the west end of the south aisle, the south aisle windows and some lesser works on the north aisle windows was £65,000.

“As we did not have this money, a small team gathered with the objective of raising it. The ‘Be a Pane’ campaign was launched on Easter Sunday 2013, and by the end of the year we had reached our target of £65,000. This was no mean achievement and is due to the generosity of many people, who gave not only of their money, but time and ideas.”

Many of the windows in the listed Victorian Church have been in place for circa 100 years. The lead deteriorates over time causing buckling and the loosening of the glass.

In addition, the tie bars, which help anchor the windows to the stone, had begun to rust and break.

Devlin Plummer Stained Glass of Great Moulton were commissioned to undertake the work, as not only are they specialists in working with glass, both old and new,  but they are also a local firm.

Work on the south aisle windows was completed and they were reinstalled before the end of 2013. Work on the west windows and reinstallation was completed by the end of May this year.

Those who sponsored sections of the windows will receive a certificate with a photograph of their section, a description of its meaning and the name of the sponsor. A book will also be produced with a copy of all the certificates, including the names of everyone who donated to the appeal.

“A service of celebration will be held on Sunday, June 8 to which all who supported have been invited and to join with us in refreshments afterwards,” said John.

“As a church we are extremely grateful to all who supported and made the campaign possible, to not only keep the church weather tight but for others to enjoy its peace and beauty and, not least, to admire the window glass.”

Vicar of Christ Church, the Reverend Dr Patrick Richmond, said: “I am so grateful to all the donors, to John Bryon and the ‘Be a Pane’ fund-raising team and to the glaziers for the restoration of our west windows.

“Many visitors and locals have said how they’ve missed them over the past four months. Having lasted for a hundred years, they now have a bright future too, and I’m delighted they will enlighten our celebrations this Whitsunday as we gather to give thanks to God and to all who have contributed to the restoration.”

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