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Iconic Norwich church set to close after 200 years 

The iconic 200-year-old United Reformed Church (URC) on Princes Street in Norwich is set to close after church members agreed to the move.

Following a survey in June 2019, it was revealed that nails holding roof tiles in place were corroding meaning the entire roof would need replacing.

A church spokesperson told the Evening News: “After 200 years serving the Norwich city community, the URC is deeply sad to announce that Princes Street URC in Norwich is close.

“The decision was made on August 4 at a church meeting where it was agreed by a clear majority that repair bills for the building were simply too high for the congregation to meet.

PrincesStURCRefurb390“There are around 25 people that make up the congregation at Princes Street URC each Sunday who are increasing in age, and it was felt that with a dwindling congregation they would not be able to take on such a large project.”

The church first opened in 1819 as a Congregational Church built in a simple non-conformist style and cost just £4,800. A major refurbishment project began in 2014 to develop the main Sanctuary and attached buildings to create a flexible, modernised space for worship and church and community use, together with a number of meeting rooms.

The Bicentenary was celebrated in December 2019.

A date for the final service in the church has not been set and the building will be returned to the URC Eastern Synod Trust.

Church minister, Rev John Potter, said: “Deciding to close has been a very difficult decision for the church to make, especially after the highlights of the celebrations that marked the bicentenary of the church last year.

“We are all deeply saddened at having to leave such a beautiful, historic place of worship. I hope that whoever buys the building will respect its heritage and use and be able to preserve it for the future benefit of the city.”

The Princes Street building is one of six URC bases in the greater Norwich area. Other churches are on Unthank Road, Ipswich Road and Jessop Road in Norwich as well as in Wymondham and Wroxham and Hoveton.

Article extracts from EveningNews24

Pictured above is the outside and Sanctuary of Princes Street URC in Norwich. Pictures courtesy of the church.

Keith Morris, 21/08/2020

Keith Morris
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