A piece of paper called “The Practicle Completion Certificate” is on the noticeboard at the back of the church hall. It is dated 5th April 2012. This is the official date when restoration works on the West gable were completed and is duly signed by our architect, Robin Wolley. I have sent a copy of this certificate to The Bishop of Liverpool’s registry in Westminster as part of the contractual agreement to acknowledge that the works we commenced in June 2011 have now been completed. This certificate is accepted by the registrar on behalf of The Chancellor who authorized the petition for faculty at the commencement of the project.
A further copy has been sent to the Archdeacon, Ricky Panter as requested by the registrar. There is still a heath and safety certificate to be issued by the contractor, Lambert /Walker which will confirm that there were no incidents to report. Special care and maintenance instructions will be issued regarding the windows which were restored and then the final completion certificate should be issued.
What a magnificent job they have done on our West gable. New masonry and stunning stained glass has transformed this end of the building. Remember the filthy polycarbonate sheets installed all those years ago to try to contain the crumbling stonework. Now they have gone, we can justifiably appreciate the quality of the wonderful works of Kempe, Wilkinson and Powell. When the sun is shining through them, they clearly radiate vibrant colours and passion. Have a closer look at the Kempe window which is on the lower right hand side of the church. It is no surprise that this Victorian master was held in such esteem. Read the inscriptions on the copper plates and feel the pain of the tragedy which the vicar and congregation must have felt all those years ago. Look up at the giant circular Rose window which is dedicated to the First World War regiments represented by members of St. Nicholas’ congregation. Have a look at the windows at the end of each aisle. They now have vents which actually open and close providing us with ventilation.
I presented Danny Parker, the young chargehand supervisor with a few crates of beer as a goodwill gesture from St. Nicholas’ Chuch to his colleagues for all their skills and dedication. When I saw him recently, he said they shared it on a trip to Newcastle to celebrate his stag night. Cheers Danny, and congratulations from all at St. Nicholas’.
Letters to Lambert/Walker and Pendle Glazing have been sent thanking them for the professional jobs they have done. Copies are on the restoration noticeboard at the back of the church hall.
It took three years from application to completion but I think we would all agree, it was worth waiting for.
The restoration of the North side of the church and a new lighting scheme are the next on the agenda. With patience, prayers and fundraising, our beautiful building is being slowly restored.
Colette is winking at us.
Stephen Green, Churchwarden