Impressive plans for Chipping Ongar United Reformed Church have been published and the work is expected to get underway this Spring (2019).
The Hall on Stanley Place is to have extensive renovation including a wider and more accessible entrance and will be renamed 'The Livingstone Hall' in honour of David Livingstone who lived in the cottages next to the Church just before proceeding to his great work in Africa.
It is anticipated that new underfloor heating will be installed plus a kitchen refit. A lift and a re-styled staircase shall lead users to the upper floor which will be renamed the 'Taylor Gallery' in memory of Jane Taylor whose Father was one-time Minister in the 19th century.
Miss Taylor is recalled as the author of the nursery rhyme 'Twinkle, twinkle, little star'. Her remains are buried beneath the ground floor where a glass floor for the 'tasteful' viewing of the grave shall be installed.
The renewed and enhanced facilities have been designed by Lewis Patten Associates (Architects) who shall also project manage the work. The estimated cost is £400,000.
The Minister, Revd Cecil White, says: "This project has been long in gestation, but the church is now focussed for the future". He also expressed the church's gratitude to HAEBEA for the financial support given.