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Monday, 1 June 2009

Resurrection for Shire's Tithe Barn

It's become a familiar story: Despite local protest, historic sites of enormous local interest get sold off to become yet more blocks of flats. The property developers move in, and gone is a unique heart of a local community - forever.

So it really is a burst of fresh-air when an historic community facility gets bought - not by property developers, but by a community group who want to pump new life back into it, for the community.

That's exactly what's happened with Shire's Tithe Barn. It has been bought from Bristol Charities by the PCC of St.Mary's Church, Shirehampton.

The Barn was opened for the first time in ages, to hold an open day for local people to come in and have an input into how they would like to see The Tithe Barn renovated and put to use.

I escaped from some arduous pre-local election leaflet delivery to have a look round and to have a chat with the dynamic Rev. Canon Christine Froude, vicar of St. Mary's church. She is hoping that the barn will be used to host a variety of community outreach initiatives, including social events, clubs, advice services and counselling, as well as additional church services for the ever growing congregation of St.Mary's.

Good luck - It will be a refreshing to have new additional facilities coming into Shirehampton, instead of watching yet more get stripped away.

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