Forty year celebration for Bingley church that rose from the rubble

Holy Trinity BingleyThe congregation at Holy Trinity, Bingley will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the dedication of their church (pictured left), which rose from the rubble of their old church building.

The old Holy Trinity (pictured below right) was demolished in April 1974 after safety officials ruled that it was unsafe.

However, the congregation raised enough money - £23,000 - to build a new church, which was dedicated on December 5 1975, 20 months after the old church was demolished..

The celebrations will be held on next Saturday (December 5) with a Sung Eucharist at 11am followed by lunch.

The celebrant will be the vicar, the Revd Andrew Clarke and the vicar at the time of the dedication, Canon John Holford will preach the sermon.

Church warden David Markham recalls: “ Palm Sunday 1974 was a day many of us will never forget – the day the old Holy Trinity Church was demolished.

“The much admired Victorian Gothic church designed by famous architect, Norman Shaw had been closed for some six months because the authorities were concerned about its safety after discovering a long standing crack in the chancel wall had widened.

“We knew the date of the demolition and members of the congregation had spent the previous fortnight frantically salvaging as many precious items as possible from the church while explosives were attached to the walls ready for the fateful day.

“Nonetheless, it was still a shock to hear a loud thud and see our beloved place of worship collapse in a pile of rubble.Former church

“Later that day, as crowds of sightseers gazed at the huge pile of stones that was once our church, members of the congregation began a re-building operation.

“All sorts of feelings welled up among the congregation. Could the church have been saved? Was it inevitable that it be demolished? Could the huge tower, the source of all the trouble after it had been added some 16 years after the church was opened in 1868, be taken down and the body of the church saved?

“The Victorian Society was among those, who campaigned for a solution to be found without demolishing the church.

“The authorities thought such a solution couldn’t be found and so the church was demolished.

“Ultimately, we managed to raise £23,000 to build the church we enjoy today. It was a simple building, basically a steel frame filled with concrete with stone facing, but since then we have all worked hard to beautify the interior and make it the best we could to the glory of God

“We are delighted that the vicar from those difficult days, John Holford will preach at the Eucharist and we invite as many people as possible to join us.”

 

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