In June, churchwardens at St Mary’s church in Oldswinford noticed a problem with the gutters and wanted to find a solution.They immediately turned to MaintenanceBooker, the new website which makes caring for churches much easier.

Using MaintenanceBooker the churchwardens quickly obtained quotes for the work involved. They selected stonemason Ben Jenkins to do the work, which he did quickly, efficiently and to a very high standard. On completion, he also provided a comprehensive report with photographs, which the church has available on MaintenanceBooker.

As an added bonus the National Churches Trust, which is behind MaintenanceBooker, even offered St Mary’s a grant of £425 towards the costs.

St Mary’s was able to identify the problem early enough to prevent major damage to the building, and by using Maintenancebooker, were able to quickly find a professional to undertake the work and also funding to help cover the cost. Stonemason Ben Jenkins said:

“The gutter clearing contract at St Mary’s consisted of clearing parapet lead lined gutters, cast iron hoppers, downpipes and flat roofs. Three of the cast iron downpipes were blocked resulting in the water being trapped in the pipes, in turn, leaking from the joints and causing the hoppers to overflow. External stone walls were becoming soaked and left unresolved would have caused considerable damp issues, including damage to the internal plaster. The build-up of debris in the parapet gutters and roofs allowed vegetation and shrubs to flourish, blocking the flow of the rainwater to the outlets.”.

“Water ingress can cause damage which is costly to repair, however, with regular maintenance this can be easily avoided. As a stonemason, I am only too aware of the damp issues that present themselves from church roofs and gutters. All churches should have their gutters regularly maintained by professional contractors, which in the long term will save a considerable amount of money.”

MaintenanceBooker service is brought to you by NCT Heritage Services and has been developed by the National Churches Trust in partnership with Christian procurement experts 2Buy2.

Grants for maintenance

The National Churches Trust is offering two grant programmes to assist churches engage financial support for their maintenance. Maintenance Micro-Grants of 50% of costs (excluding VAT) up to £500 are available towards the cost of your church’s first gutter clearance service or other church building related services when booked through MaintenanceBooker. For small proactive maintenance works such as gutter, stonework and masonry repairs, the Trust also offers Foundation Grants for Maintenance, with grants of between £500 and £10,000 to up a maximum of 50% of project costs (excluding VAT).

New Services added this month.

Established services include Asbestos Management, Lightning Conductor Inspections, Tree Survey and Surgery, and Rainwater Goods Maintenance. And this month we have included the following new services: Masonry Maintenance, Lime Mortar Repointing and High Level Inspections and Repairs.

Follow St Mary’s lead and register your church ….