£50,000 appeal to save Puriton church tower

This is The West Country: Rev Doris Goddard with church goers, hoping to raise the funds to save their church tower Rev Doris Goddard with church goers, hoping to raise the funds to save their church tower

A CAMPAIGN has been launched to save crumbling Puriton Church tower.

Vicar, the Rev Doris Goddard, is trying to raise £50,000 to repair the tower before water starts leaking in and becomes becomes unstable.

She said: “We have had to rope off the tower so people don’t walk too close. If you walk past it you’re not going to be hit by a huge piece of masonry but bits are falling off.

“The first problem we would have if we left it is water getting into the bell tower. We have a team of bell ringers and it would be a real danger to them if water started coming in.

“We are going to have to be serious about the tower. It really is getting more desperate.”

Despite the monumental task, she is confident the community will be able to raise the funds, in part because she has managed to save another church in her parish before.

Thanks to a £135,000 grant from Viridor Credits and a concerted community effort, the £200,000 needed to fix Pawlett Church was raised and repairwork ended earlier this month.

Referring to the work at Puriton Church, Rev Goddard said: “I think we will get there but I do have to be optimistic. It’s been part of the community for hundreds of years.

“I do get the feeling that the community wants it to be repaired. People often come back to the church even after they have moved away. People want to get married or get their children baptised or eventually be buried here.

“It seems like a daunting task to start with but I’m pretty confident that we will make it.”

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