On Sunday September 1
, the congregation gathered at the old building for the final time to give thanks for all that had been achieved there, before walking down Holway Road
to stop at the top of the town for prayers and songs. They then walked along Cromer Road
and crossed over into the new centre, known simply as “Lighthouse
”, for a time of celebration, followed by coffee and doughnuts.
“We have waited at least 18 years for this day”
said Ivor Charsley
, one of the church leaders, “During that time we have coped with cramped and dated facilities. Now God has given us this fabulous new centre
The need for a new building became more acute a few years ago when it emerged that the Holway Road Baptist church building required significant structural work. A re-build on that site was considered, but when the old Abbeyfield care home became available in late 2009, it soon became clear that this was the site that God had chosen for the new church centre.
“Although it has been a long journey” said Ivor, “everything has fallen into place when it needed to, including the funding, which is a sure sign that God’s hand has been upon this project from the beginning”.
The project has cost £1.5m in total, which has been raised by selling existing property, grants, loans, fund-raising and the generosity of church members. “We took up a special collection to help meet the remaining £25,000 needed to complete the fitting out of the building” explained Finance Manager Chris Gould
. “That collection raised a stunning total of over £50,000
, which means we will be able to purchase the rest of the equipment needed.”
The fellowship are now working hard to prepare for the grand opening of the new centre in three weeks’ time on Saturday September 21
. The public are warmly invited to view this striking new building from 10.30am to 12 noon
, and enjoy coffee and cakes in the café. There will be a special guest appearance by Daniel Cutting
, the Guinness Book of Records football “keep ups” champion, who will be demonstrating his skills. The new “soft play” area for younger children will also be available.
The main celebration of the day will follow the official opening at 2pm
, and the day will conclude with tea and more cake.
“This does feel like we’ve now arrived
” said Pastor Bryan Pickard
, “But in actual fact this is really only the start of our journey. We want to share this wonderful new facility with our community in North Norfolk, and show them the joy we have in knowing God
For more information about Lighthouse Community church, visit www.lighthousesheringham.org
Or phone Lighthouse reception on 01263 825155
LIGHTHOUSE, 62 Cromer Road, Sheringham, Norfolk, NR26 8RT