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Building Project – August 2013 – Newsletter

Building Project – August 2013 – Newsletter


Building Project

Issue 2 – August 2013


THE views of the PARISH

We thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts on the future potential of our parish by taking away, completing, and returning the questionnaire.  Of the questionnaires taken away an incredible 85% have been returned, with each providing unique and valuable input on what you want from our parish community.  This newsletter provides you with some feedback on the views expressed by our parish.


The feedback below takes the form of reproducing the question asked and then a summary of the responses received.


Our Worship

Should the church have a dedicated space used for mass only or should it be a flexible space that can be used for other activities including mass?


Overwhelmingly the response was for a dedicated space.


Should we have a dedicated space for catechesis/formation, ecumenical events and study?


Again the overwhelming majority of respondents backed this idea.  This support can be summarised in the words of one person who said “the hall could have a small room and a main area”


Should we have a spiritual garden?


As with the previous questions the overwhelming number of respondents supported the idea.  Unlike other responses a number of comments were left saying that this would be a ‘nice to have’ and not essential.  If we were to have one, thoughts expressing a preference of it being away from the Wells Road, perhaps around the presbytery, were made.


What other aspects need considering?


The thoughts here can be summarised in the words of one respondent who said that “the current church hall is adequate for present use, but not good enough to attract further use by outside groups wishing to hire a hall for larger groups” and another who said “we need the church and the surrounding area to be in constant use, both during the day and evening in order to fulfil its real potential”.  As part of this it was felt we would need a flexible hall space capable of being divided and kitchen facilities that could cater for groups who wanted to hire the hall.  A final idea came through in this section, namely that we need to ensure anything we do should have plenty of storage space.



Should we have the facilities for outside groups to use/hire for activities such as pre-school, youth club, weddings etc?

Everyone who responded said yes we should have more activities that connected with the community.  However a number of respondents qualified there answer by saying that in offering outreach, including the hiring of the hall, any event should be ‘appropriate’ giving consideration to the land on which the facility is located and the neighbours.


Ideas already suggested

Of the various ideas already suggested respondents ranked them in the following order:

Youth group

Over 50’s club

Pre-school – although this was qualified by a number of respondents that before embarking on a pre-school the requirements of Ofsted should be carefully considered.

Baby and toddler group/nursery

Coffee mornings

Community lunches

Hiring the hall for weddings/parties

Your ideas

The ideas received in this section can be summarised with the words of one respondent who said “the church should fulfi the needs of all whole community, especially in making young people feel welcome plus help for older people”.  Another respondent said that we should welcome back into the parish community those groups who carry the St Bernadette name  (scouts/rugby club) and involve the parish community in the spiritual life of our schools.  A further respondent said that whatever we do it should “finance itself and perhaps make a profit” as this will ensure we do not pass on to the next generation the same problem we are currently facing.


Retirement apartments

Generally this was well received, although around 20% of respondents were not in favour.  Concern was expressed over the availability of land to build the apartments as we should seek to maintain the same car parking rather than use the land for apartments.  If the apartments were built it was felt they should be made available to older members of our parish community who wished to live close to the church.

In summary

Overall the feedback was we should have a dedicated place for our worship, and have sufficient facilities to ensure that we                 can offer a wide range of activities available to the whole community.  Further that this should be done without sacrificing                 the current car parking capacity and that the solution should be one that provides the parish with the best value.

What next?

Using your responses our next step will be to go away and produce a cost/benefit analysis of the various options before us.                  Once this is done we will present the findings to you so as that we as a parish community can:

  • understand our choices;
  • chose our preferred option;
  • discuss how we could raise the necessary funds to make our dream a reality.



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