This fund will significantly enhance the physical environment of St Bart’s both inside and outside the church. It will also support ambitious plans to share our remarkable history with even more people and develop currently underused spaces, so that the mental and spiritual well-being of local people is improved. In outline, these projects include:
Creating 21st Century facilities within our historic church
St Bart’s is well known for its warm hospitality. We are fortunate to have a congregation that values the importance of fellowship, with members who work hard to welcome friends old and new. The ill-conceived and poorly constructed annex to the church which currently houses inadequate toilets and a condemned kitchen as well as a sacristy is no longer usable. We have no disabled toilet facilities and its distance from the Cloister – our primary hospitality space - remains a perpetual failing. We therefore propose to use the vacant external space behind the South Transept to create modern facilities which will properly serve the needs of all visitors to Great St Bart’s together. These enhancements will enable us to cater properly for a range of cultural events and celebrations, private functions and school visits.
A GARDEN SANCTUARY & COLUMBARIUM
By removing the wholly inadequate North Annex, we have a unique opportunity to create a place of stillness and calm, special in a city rich in skyscrapers but poor in greenery. We plan to recreate a herb, physic and sensory garden, recalling our monastic heritage, as well as an attractive and environmentally friendly restful green space for everyone including those who visit or work in the City or hospital. A columbarium, where people’s ashes can be placed and their names remembered, will add a powerful and reflective element to the garden.
Reviving Bartholomew The Less
Situated within the grounds of the Hospital and much-loved by generations of doctors, nurses and patients, our Chapel At Ease, St Barts the Less, has many urgent and compelling needs. We want this to remain a warm and welcoming space for comfort, reflection and prayer to those who need it.
BECOMING A FOCUS FOR EDUCATION
The church’s unique survival – through fire, plague, blitz, civil war, and reformation – makes this the ideal place for people to come and learn about this part of London. The scars of history can be seen across the church and need to be explained and developed. With seed funding of £50,000 we are developing plans to attract schools, families and adult visitors to an enhanced educational offer. With further funding, we can open the Crypt for school visits and create interactive displays at all of the significant areas of the church.
Find out more
To support any of these projects, you can find out more about the ways you can give and get involved,