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St Bartholomew's Church - click to enlarge

FOSB

The Friends of St Bartholomew's Church Lostwithiel
Registered Charity Number 1115047

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Overview

St Bartholomew's Church is a Grade 1 listed building that enjoys a unique position in the medieval town of Lostwithiel (Charter 1189) and in the affections of many people, a considerable proportion of whom are not part of the church's regular congregation.

St Bartholomew's Church
St Bartholomew's Church Autumn 2003
© 2003 Kitty Chanter Menendez

Friends

The Friends of St Bartholomew's Church Lostwithiel (FOSB) is a registered charity that provides an agency through which those who have been married, christened or attended concerts in the church, and local residents or visitors who value the building, its history and its traditions, can help maintain the fabric of this lovely building for the benefit of present and future generations.

Mission

FOSB's mission is to raise money for the maintenance of St Bartholomew's Church, Lostwithiel.

Activities

FOSB organises a range of events throughout the year appealing to different interest groups in the catchment area of town as well as remoter supporters and visitors. The purpose of these events is not only to raise money, but to increase public awareness of FOSB's mission and to recruit new Friends. In addition, FOSB raises money directly by soliciting one-off as well as regular donations by standing order, Gift Aided when possible. Legacies are always welcome.

Achievements

FOSB was set up in 1995. Thanks to their supporters the Friends have been able to make grants to St Bartholomew's PCC amounting to £104,215 towards upgrading the church electrics (£5,000), renovating the vestry (£3,215), restoring the church roof (£40,000) and installing a new central heating system (£16,000) and, in 2008, towards the renovation of the Tower and Spire (£32,000) and re-hanging the Bells (£8,000).

Barts Scaffolding 08 Jul 08 - click to enlarge   St Barts Spire 2008 - Close Scrutiny
St Bart's Tower and Spire Project Gets Started - Scaffolding and Initial Scrutiny. Left: photograph by Douglas Steven, Right: photograph by Ian Philipson for Douglas Steven. Photographs © 2008 Douglas Steven

More Tower Photographs
Future

FOSB's work is ongoing. For example the Parochial Church Council (PCC) has sought grants for refurbishing the bells and to make them safe by replacing the supporting steelwork at a total cost of around £42,000.

St Bartholomew's Church - One of the six bells in situ
One of the six bells in situ
© 2008 Eleanor Knowles

In July 2009 work began on removing the clock, the bells and all their supporting ironwork.

Removing the clapper
Removing the clapper

Six bells and some of the ironwork ready for loading
Six bells and some of the ironwork ready for loading

The corroded steelwork that had held the bells aloft
The corroded steelwork that had held the bells aloft

The lorry had a crane which made loading easy
The lorry had a crane which made loading easy

Clock, bells and framework nearly loaded
Clock, bells and framework nearly loaded

However these spectacular one-off projects inevitably divert funds from routine maintenance, and FOSB aims to increase its income to match outgoings in the longer term so as to make planned maintenance the norm rather than the exception.

More Bell Photographs

Works Visit

At 2pm on 28 September 2009 fifty-six of us travelled by coach to Nicholson Engineering Ltd to see the work in progress on the bells and supporting ironwork.

At Nicholson's
Nicholson's Bell Works

Here are the six bells from St Bart's, now fitted with refurbished headstocks and new bearings. The bells are expected to be returned towards the end of November.

At Nicholson's
St Bart's bells with refurbished headstocks

Andrew Nicholson holds his audience spellbound. The grey steelwork is the lower tier with four bells of the six bells - an upper layer of steelwork has yet to be added to support the remaining two.

At Nicholson's
Andrew Nicholson holds his audience spellbound

More Works Visit Photographs

Rehanging the bells

5 November 2009

With the bells due to ring this evening some images of the bells rehung in the tower were needed. With Bob's assistance the photographer clambered up among the bells and took these shots of the bell hanger, Mark (of Nicholson's), at work.

Mark hanging the bells
Mark hanging the bells

More Bell Hanging Photographs

Ringing the bells

And here, a few hours later, are the bell ringers ringing the bells once again. The smiles on their faces showed that they were pleased with the way the bells were performing.

Vestry view of the ringers
Vestry view of the ringers in action

More Bell Ringing Photographs

The Friends of St Bartholomew's Church, Lostwithiel (FOSB) are delighted to have been able to make grants totalling £40,000 towards the restoration of the tower, spire and bells, and intend energetically to continue fundraising for such projects for the foreseeable future.


How to help

Join us by becoming a Friend. Membership is open to all who are interested in furthering the work of The Friends and who have made a donation in the current year to FOSB of not less than £5. Members over the age of 18 years have the right to vote. And then we are always on the lookout for volunteers to be officers, executive committee members and helpers.

Other Pages

The rest of the site fleshes out this sketchy introduction. The three pages Building, Appeal and How to Help set out FOSB's stall, while the Resources page gives access to much downloadable documentation. We hope you enjoy the site and we look forward to hearing from you, so please contact FOSB to have a chat and find out more.


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