Thanks to National Lottery players work will be starting at St Edmund King and Martyr just after Easter. The project will undertake much needed repairs to the church tower and create a new kitchen and toilet as well as a display about the history of the church. The work will be completed thanks to a generous grant from The Heritage Lottery Fund as well as smaller awards from The Wolfson Foundation and the Garfield Weston Foundation.

Alongside the building conservation work, the church community is looking for volunteers to help with a project that will create a new exhibition about the history of the church and the specialist skills involved in repairing it, ready for Heritage Open Days in September.They are also looking to form a Friends Group of people interested in the building and its history.

Treasurer Jon Harcourt said: 

“We’re delighted that after a great deal of hard work, our lovely church will be restored to its former glory. It’s been on Heritage England’s ‘at risk register’ for some time due to the poor state of the tower roof, damaged stone work, brickwork, failed pointing and broken rainwater goods.This is a fantastic opportunity for repairs to be made and for the community to get involved in the church to help provide a place where the history of this part of Dudley can be enjoyed.”

Director of HLF West Midlands Vanessa Harbar says: 

“We have been delighted to support St Edmund King and Martyr to carry out urgent repairs and engage new audiences with this much-loved local landmark. Thank you to the National Lottery players who have made it possible.”

Specialist conservation architects, Oliver Architects and builders Stone Edge will be working on the project and project advice and support is being provided by the Diocese of Worcester Church Buildings Team.

For safety reasons, although the pattern of Wednesday and Sunday services will continue, the church will be closed whilst work is underway.

If you are interested in being involved in the history project, have pictures or information about the church or might want to become a Friend of Bottom Church, please contact the church via the web site – details at https://stedmundsdudley.wordpress.com/the-team