Nearly four centuries ago, the founding members of Stony Stratford Baptist Church committed to raising a building to glorify God and announce His Kingdom to the community of Stony Stratford. Over the years that building has been renewed many times and is still used for the purpose it was intended.
Today the church still retains an important role in the community of Stony Stratford, continuing to build upon the foundations, vision and legacy of that day over 360 years ago; and we have changed our name to “Stony Stratford Community Church” to better resemble who we are – a church for the community.
Unfortunately as our mission has developed over the years our buildings have not been able to adequately provide what we now require…
Internally, movement from one end of the building to the other is not possible without passing through either the sanctuary or church hall, which disrupts any activities that are running and limits what we can use the building for and when. We don’t have adequate meeting rooms for the activities we run and this impacts on our ability to allow the community to use our building. Our disabled facilities are not adequate and need to be modernised to come in line with modern standards.
Externally our buildings, as viewed and accessed from Cofferidge Close, do not appear welcoming, are often hidden by the exuberant growth of shrubs in season, and are traditionally the back door entrance to the church. The original main entrance was on Horsefair Green, where the community were and still are, however the development of Cofferidge Close over the years means that our main entrance now needs to face onto this side of the building.
We believe that God has now called us, his family at Stony Stratford Community Church, to build a church fit for the community in the 21st century and beyond—to create an outworking of our vision that places community at the heart of the church and the church at the heart of the community it exists to serve. We have worked hard with our architects, David Grindley Architects, and we now believe we have a scheme that will provide what we need, that is both sensitive to our existing buildings and is in-keeping with Cofferidge Close (the side of our site where the developments will be built).
The proposed building developments:
A main glazed atrium which will provide access to all key areas of the church. It will also provide a meeting place for all groups that use our building and a welcoming atmosphere to our church.
The new office suite will be better positioned to serve the church and will include a reception area.
A new flexible first floor meeting room will be “hung” inside the current church hall and accessed from a first floor glazed walkway within the atrium. Stairs and a lift will enable access to our existing first floor meeting room and the new meeting room which can be divided in two if required.
The sanctuary will be expanded by approximately 100 seats and a new balcony to mirror the existing one will be constructed. This will be accessed from the glazed walkway in the atrium.
New toilet facilities and amendments to the layout of the ground floor will complete the project.
It is anticipated that the proposed construction will be built with sustainable materials and serviced, where possible, through ecological means.
As a church we are excited by this development of our buildings. It will address many of the difficulties we currently face, but significantly will open our face onto the community in Cofferidge Close and moreover enable us to utilise all areas of the church with different activities / groups concurrently, thus enabling us to run more activities than at present. We will also be able to offer rooms for hire to the local community on a more regular basis.