Roof Repairs 2016
Although awarded grants by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Garfield Weston and others in 2015/16, the discovery of bats delayed the start of this roof repair project. A further survey, done later in 2016, as soon as the weather became milder, confirmed that there was not a breeding colony, but merely a small group of pipistrelle bats. This meant that the project could go ahead although the ecologist continued to monitor the project. There were also problems in the production of the slates, which could not be delivered until early autumn, delaying the project further.
On September 19th 2016, the scaffolding arrived and work on the roofs began a week later. First the old slates on the porch roof were removed and the roof re-felted, followed by the south aisle, the north aisle and the vestry. The dry rot in the roof of the south aisle was addressed and part of the adjoining wall also, as rot was found in a section of the wall plate. That was cut out and replaced, and additional plaster was removed to ascertain how far the rot had spread. Towards the end of the project, significant rot was found in four joists in the vestry roof. These were removed and replaced along with the other timbers. Smaller areas of rot were found in different areas of the roof and they too were addessed
The roofs of the porch, the north and south aisles and the vestry were all stripped, re-felted and re-slated and some of the old slates used to repair areas of the nave and chancel roofs where necessary. The guttering and drainage in the area of the vestry and south aisle have been much improved – this area was the worst with the rotten timber.
Many of the gutters and valleys were replaced before the roofs were re-slated and the scaffolding made it possible to clear the high level gutters.
The clerestory windows were removed and taken away for repair whilst attention was given to all the high level stonework including the windows and copings. After about six weeks the windows were replaced and re-pointed so that area looks much cleaner and lighter.
Attention was given to the bell cote. Some of the timber which supports the headstock for the bell was found to be rotten so it needed to be replaced. A new bell rope was fitted so that the bell can be used again.
During the first week of December after a visit by Overton Architects, the outstanding things were rectified and completed. The scaffolding was taken down at the end of the week and following a second visit by the architect, the work was signed off on Monday 12th December. The church then went into the Rectification period until December 2017. Then the Architect met with a Manager from Aura and a few minor defects were identified. Over the next few months these were put right and the account was finalised in the Spring of 2018.