There has been a Christian presence in South Hill, serving this local community for over 1000 years, and St Sampson’s Church at South Hill is a special place for many people. At the community meeting in November people gave over fifty reasons why St Sampson’s is special. These included: ‘a sacred space of Christian worship’, ‘family connections’, ‘the heritage’, ‘part of our history’, ‘a peaceful haven’, ‘thriving congregation’, ‘focal point and heart of the community’, ‘another venue for community use’, ‘a beautiful place of friendship and joy’, ‘a community asset’.
Our parish church is a Grade 1 listed medieval building. It has a wealth of history attached to it, including being the possible site of the monastery founded by St Sampson in the 6th century and having been Bishop Trelawney’s first parish. There are lots of things of historical importance both inside and outside the church, such as the 6th century standing stone, the carved apostles on the tower, and the font, which was part of an older church on the site. At the moment the church is open during daylight hours for anyone to visit and it is an oasis of peace. It would be a such a shame if it was lost to future generations.
As many of you know, the church council (the “PCC”) and congregation are embarking upon a massive restoration and improvement project, ‘St Sampson’s Unlocked’. The aim is to improve the church building and unlock its potential for use by the community as well as preserving this beautiful and historically important local Christian asset. Major plans include: works to the roof, ceiling, tower and windows – to make the building warm and dry – and installing toilet and kitchen facilities. Many people have said they can’t attend events because of the lack of a toilet, including, sadly, some who felt unable to attend funerals. It certainly makes it difficult for a lot of people, as do the damp and draughts – we all know how cold it gets in the winter!
The amount needed for all this work is approximately £500,000. Contrary to popular belief, there is no money available from central Church of England funds, it is down to us! Major funding is being sought from various grant giving organisations, but nearly all grant givers want to see community support and some contribution to funding. The PCC has some savings for building work and has recently raised a further £1,300.
To kick start this campaign, please will you give a donation, to help keep St Sampson’s church open as a place of worship and to turn it into a viable community space for people to use.
You may like to give in memory of someone and we will keep a book of ‘In memory’ names. In addition, a list of supporters’ names (not amounts) will be kept, publicly acknowledging your generous donation. If you want to be anonymous please say.
Donations big or small will all be welcome. You can help by:
- Making a donation online through ‘Just Giving’
If the link doesn’t work, go to justgiving.com and search for St Sampson’s Unlocked or go through the St Sampson’s Unlocked Facebook page, which has a direct link via the donate button
- Making a regular monthly donation by direct debit. This would be extremely beneficial to our budgeting. Contact details are below.
- Sending a cheque, made out to ‘St Sampson’s Church (St Sampson’s Unlocked)’. Contact details are below.
- Signing up for Easy Fundraising to donate money every time you shop online, at no cost to you. http://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/causes/stsampsonschurch
There are lots of other ways you could help – if you fancy running a marathon, shaving your head, running a fundraising event – personally or through work or school – or anything else, please keep St Sampson’s Unlocked in mind.
You can also take unwanted items to Beech auctions, on South Hill Road. Tell them it is for St Sampson’s Church and they will sell it with funds going to the St Sampson’s Unlocked project.
If you are writing or updating your will, could you include a bequest to St Sampson’s, however small? If you use Blight Broad and Skinnard of Callington they have kindly offered a 20% reduction on their normal charges when testators bequeath a minimum of £1000 to St Sampson’s Church.
Please tell all your friends and family about the project and share this information. If you require any more details, please contact one us.
Your donation and support are crucial to make the vision of a cherished, restored, focal community space happen. It will make a difference. We hope you can help.
Blessings to all
Judith Ayers and Miranda Lawrance-Owen
| Southview Barn,|
83 Launceston Road