This was what we gave out to the church earlier this month……….
We thought it was about time we gave you an update about the Building Project. There have been some real encouragements:
Natalie’s hard work with the Solicitors on the CIO (Charitable Incorporated Organisation) means that legally we are in a right position to go ahead. For the observant, you will notice that we have a new charity number CIO 1171604.
Mark and Coaston have done excellent work with Methodist Chapel Aid in securing a loan for £950,000 over 30 years. We obviously would like to not have to draw down that amount, but it’s great to be able to have access to that when we need it.
The Deacons and Adrian in particular have done lots of work behind the scenes in preparing our move to Dean Hall once the building work begins. It is a remarkable provision that we will be able to use Dean Hall for Sunday night’s and midweek ministries.
What is not so encouraging is that, having been working with the Building Contractors for the past six months, our Project Manager whom we appointed in November, feels that we need to re-look at our Building Contractors. David Watson, who has been working closely with them (and has been involved with us right through this process), reports that at a meeting last week it was decided that we would go back out to tender. The good side to this is it’s better that we know this now rather than if we were three months down the line having started the actual building. There’s a good relationship with the Project Manager and we need to trust the professional advice we’ve been given.
The rough timeline is as follows:
1. Documents would be ready to be sent out to tender at the end of April. The Building Contractors would have two weeks to get a quote back in. One encouragement is that it appears builders are more eager for work than they were this time last year, and so we hope we will have four bids.
2. By mid-May a decision should be able to be reached on a successful tender and, if there is no negotiation to be had on price (we need the bids to come in under £2.2 million and so do pray that we would have a number of bids under this price), we should be able to sign a contract and builders should be on site demolishing by the end of June.
At this point, if you’re still with me, you’re probably rolling your eyes and thinking this could take a lot longer – and it could. But, God-willing, if the tenders come back at the right price, we should be starting the building work before the summer holidays.
Where does this leave us? Having looked at the figures there is a shortfall of around £200,000 (although the building is £2.2m we still need to fit it out) and we are approaching a number of donors about this, but we are also asking whether you as a congregation can give again. We had hoped not to have to come back to you until the building had actually started, but that has not been possible. So we have called for a day of prayer, fasting and giving on Wednesday 26th April. We’ll get together that evening to break the fast, eat together, celebrate the Lord’s Supper and pray.
If we are able to raise the remaining shortfall then this will also put us in a better position when we go out to tender.
This has been a long project and we are grateful for all the work that the Building Committee and various people have done on this — and also the patience of the church family in the process. The Building Project has never been a source of division – long may that continue!
We also need to remember how far the Lord has brought us – we have raised almost £2.1 million (with the help of pledges, the loans and donations and also after having bought out the Coach House and the land at the back of the church for £400,000) it is remarkable where the Lord has brought us to. It feels like we’ve been saying this for quite a long while, but we’re not far away from being able to start.
Do keep praying and consider how you might be able to give.