Church reveals expansion plans

PUBLISHED: 06:17 10 March 2019

Steamcross Community Church in Claverham.    

Picture: MARK ATHERTON

Steamcross Community Church in Claverham. Picture: MARK ATHERTON

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A 'dilapidated' part of a village church faces being torn down and replaced with a modern equivalent.

Steamcross Community Church, in Claverham, wants a larger meeting room to help it grow after two groups merged at the start of the year.

Claverham Free Church, which meets at the Claverham Road building that may be altered, amalgamated with River of Life Church, which used to meet at Yatton Junior School, on January 1.

Church leaders want to remove the timber extension which is in poor repair as it was only ever meant to be a temporary solution, yet has stood for more than five decades.

A church spokesman, in the planning application to North Somerset Council, said: “As the churches have amalgamated, increasing the numbers of people in the congregation and those wishing to use the facilities on a regular basis, it has created a shortage of much-needed space.

“We therefore wish to replace the dilapidated timber extension which was built as a temporary measure more than 50 years ago, which is no longer fit for use, with a new purpose-built larger meeting room.”

The church is also hopeful that the development would allow it to host more groups and events in future.

The church’s application continues: “We are also looking to update and improve the old kitchen and welfare facilities so Steamcross Community Church is able to provide space for clubs and youth activities for children, coffee mornings, parent and baby groups, parenting sessions and to be able to support a wide variety of community projects as well as the church meetings.

“The building will not overlook or encroach on any neighbouring properties and will enhance the opportunities within the village and provide refurbished facilities with improved access, including for those with additional needs.”

The planning application will be debated by Yatton Parish Council in the coming weeks, where it will make a recommendation to North Somerset Council.

The latter will have the final say as to whether the scheme can proceed.

* To comment on the plan, visit www.n-somerset.gov.uk/planning and search for application 19/P/0256/FUL

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