St Andrews Church, Haughton Le Skerne

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The project goal was to create more space at the front of a cramped church, forming a disabled ramp and raised platform area with modern audio visual equipment to sympathetically introduce the church to a more modern congregation.

The works involved the careful removal of eight 16th Century pews and eight 19th Century pews under the watchful eye of a specialist furniture conservationist. We then placed the 16th Century pews in the previous position of the 19th Century pews, extending and preserving each pew.

The programme was very tight on this project. The church being one of the oldest in the country is used and visited every day, so closure had a financial impact on the church’s income. All work had to be completed on 19th December in time for the Christmas ceremonies, so we had to carefully manage the deadlines as the project could not overrun.

The church was built in 1125 from the ruins of an older Saxon Church. The Furniture had to be handled with great care; a 16th Century pew is irreplaceable and financially priceless, so we were conscious that unique pieces of history were in our care.