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This is what our vestries used to look like. The lower part has been glassed in to provide a priest's vestry (downstairs) and a choir vestry (upstairs).
The old glass screen
In 2008, they changed. This is what they now look like:
However, the journey wasn't a simple one. Here's a brief resume of what happened.
Have you ever planned some work in your home? Perhaps you wanted to install a new kitchen or toilet. No doubt you were prepared for some delays in the process but assumed that it would all be over in a few weeks or months. We probably had similar thoughts. Our installation, from the original decision to the first flush took just over 14 years.
In 1994 we decided that we needed a toilet and small kitchen in our church and so Ron Baker, Godfrey Darbin and Ray Foster started to look round other churches to get ideas about what we could do at St Margaret's
We set up a small committee consisting of Rob Prew, Richard Daniells, Anne Quinn, Ron Upton and Ray Foster to see what suggestions we could submit to our then architect..
At that time our sights were to have something achieved by the year 2000, we even called it 'The Millennium Loo.'
Many meetings were arranged with the architect who duly drew up plans. However, each time we met strong opposition: first from English Heritage, then from the Diocese; and then from South Beds District Council.
Many more meetings were arranged with all the groups concerned. The months and years rolled by. Soon it became apparent that the aim to have the facilities by the year 2000 was just a pipe dream.
The year 2000 passed. Everyone concerned was getting very frustrated with the lack of progress. Most people began to think it would never happen.
More meetings were held between 2000 and 2005 with all parties. Then we had a change of architect. The new architect was Michael Dale, who had the idea of having a new vestry, toilet and small kitchen at the back of the Church.
Plans were drawn up over a period of time and eventually all parties agreed that this was the best way forward.
The work was started in May 2008 and completed in October 2008. We were able to have our official opening with a concert by the Woburn Band at the end of October.
These facilities really enhance the Church for ourselves and future generations. It was a long haul, but we got there in the end.
Click here to see the timeline of events.
Click here to see the construction and opening photographs.