St John's Sandiway is hard to access for wheelchair users, those who need a handrail or those with pushchairs. We intend to build a permanent ramp, with handrails and a non-slip surface to allow everyone access. It doesn't matter whether they want to access the church every week, come to the monthly concerts, explore the John Douglas heritage, come to a wedding, or get to the funeral of a loved one, we passionately believe that everyone should be able to get into the building easily. Our architect has drawn up designs which are in keeping with the beauty of this listed building, sitting within a conservation area. We have already started fund-raising, but we need your help to complete this project successfully. 2023 is the 120th anniversary of the church - universal access is a fitting way to celebrate!
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
With the ramp in place, anyone can access the building when they need to. For example: - a young mum with a double buggy can get into church for a wedding - a wheelchair user can enjoy one of the monthly classical concerts, where professional musicians bring live music to the local community - a disabled family member of a loved one can attend a funeral with dignity - a villager who struggles to climb steps can more easily come for coffee and company at our weekly Saturday morning drop-in session There are also three care homes in the village, with a number of residents who like to visit the church: with the ramp in place, they would have easy access to the building.
Steps to get it done:
Allowing everyone to access the building is the first step of a larger project to create a community space that serves the needs of all visitors. In addition to the ramp and glass door, we plan a small project to create more space for wheelchairs and buggies at the front of the church, to improve the lighting within church, and to add handrails to the steps inside the church. Following that, within the next 5 years, we plan to build a heritage café as an annexe on the back of church that will provide a meeting space with full access toilets and baby change. The heritage café will allow us to share the history of the John Douglas building, but it will also create a space that community groups can use.
About the space
St John's Sandiway, Norley Road
Cheshire West and Chester