St James’s Church in Louth repair works - Church warden tells all

Just one snap of the current repair maintenance works taking place on the spire of St James's Church in Louth.
Just one snap of the current repair maintenance works taking place on the spire of St James's Church in Louth.

The churchwarden of St James’s Church in Louth has revealed exactly why several weeks worth of work has been undertaken at the iconic landmark.

St James’s Church as you see it at present, (including the spire), was built 500 years go.

Due to its age, the church and the spire is exposed constantly to differing weather conditions - and as a result, needs appropriate repairs and maintenance works .

Jeannie Gurnham, churchwarden of St James’s Church revealed in 2015, Stones Technical Services Ltd - who specialise in ecclesiastical work - were asked to do a survey of the spire internally and externally for any damage and wear and tear issues that needed repairs.

She told the Leader: “A lot of people have been asking us what is going on at the church, so we’re here to set the record straight.

“The report undertaken by Stones Technical Services listed a number of problems, ranging from fissures in the masonry and some minor pointing issues, and corrosion.

“The report also showed metal fatigue to the upper tabernacle and damage to the apex structures, including the ornate weather-vane and the golden cockerel, which needed re-gilding and repairing.

“So work has been undertaken to repair these issues as highlighted in the report.”

To get up there, of course, is no easy matter and the masons have had to construct a huge scaffold platform all around the church apex area using ropes and ladders, which are clearly visible from below.

Ms Gurnham added that all of this work runs into the hundreds of thousands of pounds - and comes on top of the added day-to-day running costs of the church.

Ms Gurnham said: “Getting the money to pay for this work has been a problem.

“Although we are very fortunate in having the support of The Friends of St James’s Church who raise money tirelessly for the upkeep of this beautiful and iconic ancient building and have funded this and many other repair-projects, including the floor repairs scheduled for the New Year.”

If you would like to help, just pop into the church and pick up a form, and input into the church’s donation boxes are always gratefully received.