Villagers celebrate repair of ancient church
Updated 6:45pm Friday 4th July 2014 in News
Worshippers at a village near York are celebrating after raising money for restoration work on ancient church remains.
Grade Two listed St Leonard’s at Sand Hutton traces it history back to the 12th century. But by 1824, the ruin seemed beyond repair and estate owner James Walker recycled much of the stone to build the new place of worship, St Mary’s.
By 2005, work was urgently needed to stabilise the remains of St Leonard’s and the Walker family vault which lies beneath the ruins.
St Leonard’s was on English Heritage’s Building at Risk register before a 2008 earth tremor caused further damage.
Following an appeal involving English Heritage and Ryedale Council, the stonework and door locks have been fixed, and access restored to the vault.
Sand Hutton School pupils designed a motif for a commemorative stone.
Assistant Church Warden Ellen Stott said: "We are indebted to many people for their support throughout the whole restoration.
"We are very fortunate to have such a tangible link to the past and are delighted that we have been able to preserve this ancient monument for future generations."