Early in March every house in Amberley received an envelope giving the details of this appeal and how to contribute. Already we have had an encouraging response, although there is still a way to go.
To find out why this appeal is important, please read on
First some history. Holy Trinity Amberley was built in 1836 through the generosity of the economist, David Ricardo of Gatcombe Park, as a token of his gratitude to God for the miraculous escape from serious injury of his son, also called David, in a riding accident. The church could seat 700 and what we now know as the Parish Room was the school room. The scale of the building suggests that Ricardo meant the church to be for all in the community.
Now, nearly two hundred years later, the building struggles to meet the needs of our community in the 21st century. There is only one accessible toilet which is at the far end of the parish rooms; there are no similar facilities in the church. There is a ramp up to the church but no straightforward access to the parish rooms without using steps. Anyone who has supported people with mobility issues or has small children knows how important easy access to buildings and to toilets are. To offer people a small outside toilet in the church or a long journey along the lane to a barely adequate facility tucked away at the rear of the parish rooms is unreasonable.
This is not an appeal for money to make significant changes to the church, only to ensure that those who are welcomed there for the many activities that take place at both levels of the building have a reasonable standard of facilities and easy access.
With love, peace and hope to you all
Reverend John Spiers