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Ecclesistical & Heritage World No.92

Ecclesiastical & Heritage World Nimrod
Ecclesiastical & Heritage World Scanaudio

Cathedral Care

Restoration and upkeep of cathedrals

There are some 42 Anglican cathedrals in the UK, not to mention 20 or so Catholic cathedrals. Cathedrals form the most important collection of historic buildings in England. The largest and most ancient are internationally famous, the smallest are usually among the most significant buildings in their region and even the most recent are architectural masterpieces.


Master Craftsmen

Championing our heritage with modern craftsmanship

Twenty years ago, English Heritage (now Historic England) published its first-ever Register of Buildings at Risk across England, which featured nearly 2,000 buildings and monuments that were ‘neglected, broken and unloved’. Recently Historic England was delighted to announce that over two-thirds of those buildings were now safe, in both urban and rural areas right across the country.


Traditional Lime

Lime: it’s better for buildings – and for the environment

It is now fairly well known that cement is not good for old buildings and that lime mortar should be used. But why? What are the advantages and what are the disadvantages? In order to begin to answer those questions it is necessary to understand the nature of traditional building, the process by which buildings used to be built, and how it differs from modern construction, the process by which we build today.


Audio Visual

Audio visual equipment in church buildings

This guidance is issued by the Church Buildings Council under section 55(1)(d) of the Dioceses, Mission and Pastoral Measure 2007. As it is statutory guidance, it must be considered with great care. The standards of good practice set out in the guidance should not be departed from unless the departure is justified by reasons that are spelled out clearly, logically and convincingly.


Stained Glass

A brief history of stained glass

The origins of the first stained glass windows are lost in history. The technique probably came from jewelry making, cloisonné and mosaics. Stained glass windows as we know them, seemed to arise when substantial church building began.

By the 10th century, depictions of Christ and biblical scenes were found in French and German churches and decorative designs found in England.


Back Issues

Ecclesiastical & Heritage World Back Issues



Natural Stone

Identifying and sourcing stone for repair

England is fortunate to have such a wide variety of historic and older stone buildings. However, there has been a marked decline in the range of natural stones that are being actively quarried.


Pest Control

Call in professionals if nesting birds pose a problem

Birds can cause a range of issues during nesting season, but interfering with wild birds, their eggs or nests could lead to prosecution, a national trade body has warned.


CRE Events

Thousands set to descend on Sandown

The next incarnation of Christian Resources Exhibition will be CRE National 2022 – taking place at Sandown Park in Esher, Surrey, on 11-13 October.

Sandown Park is a great venue for Europe’s leading annual exhibition of Christian resources. Just 15 miles from central London, the venue is easily accessible by rail (25 minutes from London Waterloo to Esher) and road (M25 and A3). Parking is free for exhibitors and visitors.


Lead Roofing

The benefits of lead roofing

Lead is one of the oldest materials in the roofing industry and is still commonly used throughout the world today.

Lead roofing is a traditional roofing method which has been used in the industry for hundreds of years, and is therefore proven to be extremely reliable. Lead roofing, and sand-cast lead, in particular is ideal for old buildings such as churches or historical renovations, whereas milled lead roofing is a mass-produced alternative, used for precision and accuracy in homes and commercial buildings alike.


Energy Efficiency

Energy Efficiency and Historic Buildings

Historic England supports the Government’s aims to improve the energy efficiency of existing buildings through Part L of the Building Regulations. Many improvements can be carried out, often at a relatively low cost, significantly enhancing the comfort of the building for its users, as well as providing savings on fuel bills and helping to meet greenhouse gas emission reduction targets.


Lightning Protection

When lightning strikes are you protected against this act of God?

The issue of lightning protection in churches is one that has exercised this publication for many years. In this four-part series of spotlights on the issue we will be revisiting various aspects of the subject, beginning with an overview of current thinking.


Heritage Roofing

Heritage roofing - maintaining our iconic buildings

The UK is home to some of the most iconic buildings in the world, from stunning churches and cathedrals to historic stately homes. Each and every one of these remarkable feats of architecture requires regular maintenance to ensure they remain in the very best condition, allowing them to be enjoyed for generations.


Church Lighting

Light up your place of worship

The design of a lighting scheme and the light fittings themselves can have a positive impact on the way your building looks as well as being functional.



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Locally-made tiles allow a jewel of the Jewellery Quarter to shine again

An award-winning restoration project on the Grade Two*-listed Argent Centre in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter has included matching tiles from nearby Brierley Hill-based Dreadnought Tiles.

Originally known as the Albert Works, the Argent Centre was designed by J G Bland and built in 1863 as a pen manufacturing centre consisting of rows of workshops overlooking an internal square courtyard. It is believed that the original building had two impressive corner turrets looking out over Legge Lane, which were truncated sometime after 1945.

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Szerelmey restore Grade One-listed columns at St John's College, Oxford

0n7107Szerelmey was appointed alongside Beard Construction and working with Wright and Wright Architects to carry out extensive repair, restoration and replacement work to the Grade I listed Laudian Library extension in the Canterbury Quadrangle. This follows on from the successful delivery of a new package of works creating a new library and study centre, artwork walls and interior and exterior paving – completed by Szerelmey in 2019. The Canterbury Quadrangle is one of the most famous, historic and beautiful of Oxford’s buildings.

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Wells Cathedral awarded a £578k grant by National Lottery Heritage Fund to implement major project

Wells Cathedral in Somerset has received initial support from The National Lottery Heritage Fund for its ‘Vicars’ Close: A Medieval Street Singing Through the Centuries’ project. Made possible by National Lottery players, the project aims to make a number of the historic properties on Vicars’ Close in Wells accessible to the public for the first time, to better share their rich history. The project will also conserve the unique architectural heritage of the Close, the oldest continuously inhabited medieval street in Europe.

Development funding of £577,562 has been awarded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund to help Wells Cathedral progress their plans to apply for a full National Lottery grant at a later date.

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Roofing specialists help keep Durham’s jewel in good order

0n7120Durham Cathedral has a rich and varied history. Founded as a monastic cathedral at the beginning of the 12th century, it was built as both a place of worship and the home of a Benedictine community. Over the past century it has served a multi-use purpose and is a church of the Anglican Communion as well as being a shrine to St Cuthbert, the seat of the Bishop of Durham and a place of pilgrimage and spirituality.

A much-loved and cherished landmark in the North East of England, it also won the Reader’s Choice for Britain’s Best Building in a poll conducted by The Guardian, detailing its importance and recognition among the local community and wider public.

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Are you safe working at height compliant?

The working at height regulations cover all occupations and places of work, placing duties on the employers, employees, self-employed and persons who control the work of others.They apply to every work place and all occupations, including volunteers who offer their services at ecclesiastical and heritage sites, stately homes, castles and even zoo’s.

The regulations clearly state that works must be planned, organised and carried out by a competent person.

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Weldon stone give a guide to natural stone

Looking for some useful tips on natural stone? There are obviously a wide variety depending on what its end use is.

Peter Dunn of Weldon Stone gives some examples with technical specifications and images of the products they have available. You can choose from everything from paving stone to stone for fine carving, from window sills to copings, from lime stone to headstones.

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20th Anniversary success for ISCVEx 2022

Xv3ZTt6Wednesday, March 23rd 2022, the Institute of Sound, Communications and Visual Engineers winds up its 20th Anniversary ISCVEx event at Coombe Abbey Hotel and Country Park near Coventry.

Held annually by the Institute of Sound, Communications and Visual Engineers, ISCVEx is open to members and non-members and is a mixed programme including a manufacturers and distributors exhibition, networking and seminars events. 

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Shedding some light on the new Part L Building Regulations


A major part of the UK’s commitment to meeting its targets for carbon reduction is being driven by a tightening of the Building Regulations surrounding energy efficiency standards for homes. Here, Stella Rooflight Director, Paul Trace, addresses the new rules for rooflights and thermal performance including why they are needed. 

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Creating light beautifully with Clement Conservation Rooflights – the best for energy efficiency and more

0n7176Whether you are looking to renovate a period property, update your home or office, or transform a new space, creating the right amount of interior light is always a major consideration and a rooflight can often be crucial in enabling daylight to flood into a lower level room, an attic or even a peculiarly shaped corner.

Clement Conservation Rooflights have been awarded an A+ window energy rating by the British Fenestration Rating Council (BFRC), the premier UK authority for independently verified ratings of energy efficient windows and doors. However, this is not the only benefit you receive when you choose one of our rooflights.

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A fabulous new space created for this much loved theatre

0n7178The Progressive Players were founded in 1920. In 1939, founding members Ruth, Sylvia and Hope Dodds generously provided the money to purchase a vacant site facing Saltwell Park, together with adjoining No.3 Saltwell View, and build the Players’ own theatre.

The Little Theatre is believed to be the only playhouse built in Britain during World War II and to this day it remains Gatehead’s one theatre. It opened with a performance of ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ in October 1943 and since then the site has remained home to the Progressive Players who now produce ten plays a year.

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Athlone House scoops brace of roofing awards

0n7181When the Pitched Roofing Awards were announced on 26 November, one outstanding project won both the Best Use of a Heritage Roof and Best Use of Concrete Clay Tiles for a Domestic Project categories. That project was the reroofing of Athlone House in North London using tiles produced by traditional manufacturer Dreadnought – whose pedigree in clay tile production dates from 1805.

Standing on high ground just beyond the northern edge of North London’s Hampstead Heath, within the Highgate Conservation Area, over its 150-year history Athlone House has been used as a private dwelling, a secret RAF school during WWII and more recently an NHS home for people with dementia. 

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ISCVE appoints new president and vice president

ISCVE Logo CMYK 300dpiAt its recent Members’ Day and AGM, the Institute of Sound, Communications and Visual Engineers (ISCVE) announced the appointment of its new president and vice-president.

Neil Voce, MInstSCVE, Sales Director for Ambient System, was appointed as the new president, for a term of three years, taking over from Helen Goddard FInstSCVE, while Jim Smith FInstSCVE was appointed vice president.

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Kentec’s new K-Mesh wireless technology wins praise for Chester Cathedral project

0n7199K-Mesh, a next-generation wireless fire detection technology from Kentec Electronics, a leading manufacturer of life-critical control solutions, is winning deserved praise from the installer of a new system protecting the historic Chester Cathedral.

Brad Parker, founder of Charles Thomas Heritage Fire Protection, was tasked with specifying and upgrading the wireless fire detection system previously installed in the Cathedral. The thick walls and lead-lined roofs and the other challenges that come with a building that can trace its roots back to 1093, meant Brad had to think outside the box.

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Ecclesiastical Insurance Group becomes Benefact Group

The new name and brand identity marks an ambitious new chapter for the charitable owned Group and its family of specialist businesses.

Owned by a registered charity, Benefact Trust, Benefact Group gives all its available profits to good causes. The new name better reflects the Group’s diversity, breadth and purpose – it derives from Latin and means to do well by supporting a person or good cause.

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Spending a legacy on a sound system – what to upgrade?

Recently Blaydon Communications were contacted by a local church who had kindly been left a legacy and needed some advice. The sound system in the church had not been touched for many years so it was decided that a beneficial use for the money would be to upgrade the sound system. Conflicting online advice and sheer options for hardware had proved overwhelming, so it was time to draft in some professional help. The company's managing director Paul Dougherty takes up the story.

Our initial visit to the church was mainly a fact-finding mission to determine what the expectations of the church was from the proposed system. Once we knew what was expected we could work back through the technicalities of achieving the desired outcome without having to ask any technical questions to the church. Using this approach requires no technical knowledge from the end users and reinforces the fact that all we are interested in is making sure the system does it needs to when it is finished.

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Restoration work at St Philip and St James Church, Whitton

When the fabric of the building at St Philip and St James Church, Whitton in Twickenham began to fail, Minerva Building Restoration Ltd were appointed to assess the general condition of this 1862 built church. The main brief was to accompany the client to determine the worst affected areas and ultimately produce detailed stone repair schedules and costs for consideration.

As with many churches, the issue of invalidating insurance policies with scaffolding in place meant that combination of scaffolding and cherry picker access was required to reach the works at high level.

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Scanaudio provide induction loop at Temple Farm

Temple Farm is a new 84-acre UK headquarters for the International Bible Students Association (IBSA) located near Chelmsford, Essex. The site has up to 1,000 volunteer workers per day alongside a small number of outside sub-contractors and is professionally managed and run by the organisation.

To provide equal access to sound for people with hearing loss and fulfil the requirements of IEC 60118-4 in a multipurpose auditorium, the Jehovah’s Witnesses organisation approached assistive listening system manufacturer Ampetronic to help.

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