Christians of the Baptist flavour have been around in Hooky for about 375 years, and we worship today in a building built over 250 years ago! We are hoping to be around for some time yet and we would like to keep our Georgian chapel too, so we have applied for permission to renovate the chapel as it is Grade II listed. We were granted approval by the Baptist Union of Great Britain’s Listed Building Advisory Committee back in January 2019 and are now underway raising the funds so we can get this work started.
Our challenge now is to undertake a renovation that will make the Georgian chapel fit for another 300 years or so! The renovation will improve drainage, remove the causes of damp, level the floor and install energy-efficient heating and insulation, whilst bringing the building up to modern standards and regulations.
The programme is split into a number of phases:-
This phase addresses the causes of damp in the building by providing better drainage to the building. Additional downpipes will be added to the guttering to help cope with the modern deluges caused by global warming, and they will be connected to the main drainage in Netting Street. The external boiler room will be demolished and the capped blue-brick chimney will be removed and the wall made good. A French drain will be dug around three sides of the chapel. We are reinstating the porch doors that were removed in Victorian times which will make the building more secure. These will be power-assisted to improve access for those with mobility issues.
A new external door will be added to the vestry to provide another means of exit of the building in case of an emergency. The existing path between the hall and chapel will be replaced by a self-compacting gravel path with a more gentle incline to the chapel.
The existing wooden floor, which is rotting near the west and north walls, will be removed and the floor leveled removing the need for the step inside, further improving access for those with mobility issues.
Finally, thermal insulation will be installed in the roof space.
This phase is underway and is expected to complete in January 2024.
This phase replaces the existing electrical heating with a central heating system, add ventilation via the roof space and replace the existing 20th Century strip lights and fittings with something more inkeeping with the Georgian Architecture. The first fit has started and is expected to complete in January 2024.
This phase will refurbish the Georgian gallery and fit raked pews to provide better visibility to the room below. The existing door will be replaced with a Georgian-style partially glazed door. This phase will commence when further funds allow.
The Aim of the Renovation
Our aim is to make the chapel into a venue that the whole community can enjoy for events such as concerts, dramas, etc., not just for Sundays. It will protect the structure of the building from further deteioration and make it more energy efficient.
So if you are interested in our plans and / or want to help, please get in contact with us and / or donate through Paypal.
Follow our Chapel Renovation blog for the latest updates on progress, or
In the local press