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/ 27 November 2023

The Annunciation Marble Arch receives Heritage Fund grant of £90,000 for urgent repairs

It’s been announced that the Church of the Annunciation Marble Arch has received a grant of £90,000 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund to save an important historic building in the centre of London and help the organisation look towards it future.

The project will repair and conserve the Calvary War Memorial on the corner of Old Quebec Street and Bryanston Street – which was recently vandalised.  Other key elements including looking at the organisations resilience to plan for its future. This includes conservation and business planning, audience development, architectural feasibility studies, and help with further fundraising to address identified needs. There are also two exciting pilot projects that seek to develop the church’s current work with schools and the deaf community.

The Church of the Annunciation is a Gothic revival building located within the Portman Estate Conservation Area, just off Oxford Street near Marble Arch and is Grade II* Listed. The church was designed by Sir Walter Tapper (1861–1935) and completed in 1912–1913. The resulting church is widely considered to be a masterwork, displaying an extraordinary control of architectural composition. The interior remains largely unaltered since its construction. The quality and control of light is exceptional, and the church is enriched with an array of fittings and fixtures of significant detail and quality. A large undercroft sits below the church, extending to the entire footprint.

The church is beautifully decorated and is a welcoming and comforting presence in the locality. It is held in great affection by international visitors and those who live and work nearby, as well as by its long-term primary school partner, Hampden Gurney, and concert goers, and the many local families who utilise its popular Sunday School each week.

This project is vital in developing the Church of the Annunciation’s future, comprising of both practical and sustainable elements that will tackle mounting problems with the building once and for all. The building was added to Historic England’s Heritage at Risk register in 2019 meaning that improvement works are becoming increasingly urgent, with architects needing to explore the most effective remedies and quantify the necessary works, as well as explore ways to make the facilities more accessible. The Heritage Fund grant will help the Church of the Annunciation ‘share its future’ and ensure this astonishing building is enhanced for users today and for generations to come.

Commenting on the project, The Revd Dr Lincoln Harvey, Vicar of the Annunciation Marble Arch, said:

“This is a significant milestone in the life of our community. We are hugely grateful to the Heritage Fund for supporting this project. We look forward to working closely with them and with all our local community as we deliver this important resilience project, as well as several exciting new initiatives to test out our future plans.”

 Stuart McLeod, Director of England – London & South at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:

“We are delighted to support the Church of the Annunciation with this important resilience project. Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, they will be able to look towards the future to ensure that this amazing Grade II* Listed building is serving its community for centuries to come. This project is a fantastic example of how we can support our churches and encourage new heritage investment that benefits our local communities and economies.”

 


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