Historic King’s Lynn chapel ‘on course to re-open this autumn’, campaigner says

Public tours of building work at St Nicholas Chapel,King's Lynn From left Nick Brayshaw showing group  far right Abigail Rawlings Church conservation trust, work progress. ANL-150906-131020009
Public tours of building work at St Nicholas Chapel,King's Lynn From left Nick Brayshaw showing group far right Abigail Rawlings Church conservation trust, work progress. ANL-150906-131020009

A historic Lynn church is set to re-open to visitors this autumn following a multi-million pound restoration and improvement project.

Contractors have been on site at St Nicholas’ Chapel for nearly a year to undertake repairs and install a range of new facilities designed to transform the building into a modern cultural venue.

Now, campaigners who fought to secure the cash for the project have signalled their intention to re-open the building with a musical event in mid-September.

Adrian Parker, chairman of the chapel’s Friends group, said: “We’re talking about an opening for the Heritage Open Day weekend (on September 13).”

Work on the chapel began last July following the success of the campaign to secure a Heritage Lottery Fund grant covering most of the £2.7 million cost.

The Calling All Angels appeal raised around £250,000, well in excess of the £210,000 required to secure the award.

Visitors were able to see the work, which includes the installation of new solar panels, low energy heating systems, toilet and kitchen facilities, for themselves during a day of tours on the site last week.

And Mr Parker said it is hoped that the contractors will leave the site next month, adding: “There’s some wonderful workmanship going on. It will be quite a special sight for people.”

Once the contractors leave the chapel, work is then set to begin on display and interpretation boards around the building, which it is hoped will be completed by the end of August.

Meanwhile, the chapel’s bells are expected to be brought back to the building in October following their own restoration project.

Earlier this year, the Friends secured a second Heritage Lottery grant, worth £24,000, to help fund repairs to the 150-year-old bells, plus new headstocks, bearings and rope fittings.