Holy Cross Crediton Campaign Roof Appeal

“Save me, O God for the waters are come” Psalm 69 Appeal

Patron: The Right Reverend Dame Sarah Mullally, Bishop of Crediton

For events supporting this campaign see Campaign Roof Appeal Events


Largest Restoration Project since the 1880′s

The Appeal is Crediton Parish Church’s Largest Restoration Project since the 1880′s. As at October 2014 the Appeal target to complete extensive urgent high level masonry repairs and replace large areas of lead roof coverings at Holy Cross Crediton is £1,083,800. This sum is made up as follows: phase 1 £421,800 (eastern arm), phase 1a £222,900 (tower) and phase 2 £439,100 (western arm).  We expect to be dealing with phase 2 from 2019.  To all these costs professional fees and VAT have to be added.

The Campaign Roof Appeal was launched on Saturday 3 May at 11am by Crediton Rector, Nigel Guthrie.

About the Appeal

It has been known for some time that the next major fabric projects here at Holy Cross would be new lead covering for most of the roofs along with a large amount of high level masonry repair and replacement. Much of the lead dates from between 1860 and 1880 and is now coming rapidly to the end of its useful life. The roofs have numerous defects, many of which have been repaired in the past. Oversized lead bays are suffering from creasing due to thermal movement and this has led to cracking in many. Some repairs are still sound others have split again. The south side of the Chancel roof was temporarily repaired a number of years ago. These repairs have now degenerated and until recently no longer served a consistent function. There are persistent leaks in places and buckets can be found in the church from time to time along with chalk marks on the floor marking the position of leaks under investigation. Urgent stonework repairs will need to be co-ordinated with the other roof repairs.


Temporary Repairs

Since 2011 an active scheme of temporary repairs has been underway to try and fix leaks to keep water out of the building and its structures. This has included repair to split and leaking downpipes, several new bays of lead, the reengineering of lead flashing to the side of the tower, applying and extending flash-band repairs to the Chancel and repairing other leaks where practicable.

The most recent five yearly fabric inspection, completed at the end of February 2014, confirmed our worst thoughts, and has recommended what will probably be a two phase plan. After some investigative works it is expected phase 1 will include works at the east end of the church plus the tower with phase two to include works to the west end. All these works will involve the use of extensive scaffolding.

Inevitably the cost of these urgent repairs will far outstrip the available financial resources we have available even after the much needed funds raised annually at our ever popular Flower and Christmas Tree Festivals and the much appreciated support from the Friends of Crediton Church. The investigative works and some of the more minor repairs will be able to be funded, some will be able to be completed using skills and goodwill from within our congregation but most of the considerable urgent repairs and renewal works needed to the high level masonry and to the substantial areas of the roof coverings are subject of this Campaign Roof Appeal.


Water penetration in the Chapter House
Leadwork and Stonework Repairs

It is expected that other repairs at lower levels, including in places substantial stonework and pointing repairs and perhaps some leadwork will need to continue as a rolling programme in parallel to the high level projects

Nick McKinnel the Bishop of Crediton had kindly agreed to be the Campaign Appeal Patron and a small group drawn from the Governors and the congregation is now working hard to raise the funds needed. Funding applications will be made to the Heritage Lottery Fund and an extensive list of other potential grant making bodies and there will be a series of local fund raising events.

Holy Cross Crediton is Grade 1 listed, arguably the second most important listed building in Devon after Exeter Cathedral, and is widely regarded as one of the most important parish churches in the country. From 909 until 1050 we were the site of the first cathedral in Devon. Anyone coming to see Holy Cross has to only thumb through the comments in our visitors’ book to see what a positive “wow” impression our church building makes on our visitors.


Bulge on the south side of the tower

Unusually for the Church of England Holy Cross is owned by a Corporation of twelve Governors. The townspeople of Crediton bought Holy Cross from Henry V111 in 1547 for the sum of £200, and under a charter granted six weeks after Henry’s death by his son Edward V1, twelve Governors were appointed to act as trustees on behalf of all the residents of Crediton and the wider surrounding parish. It is the successors of the original Governors who today still have the responsibility for the repair and maintenance of Holy Cross.

Recent Appeals and Projects

Since 2000 three major projects have been completed at Holy Cross: organ (£114,000), bells (£153,000), and most recently lighting and electrics (£142,500) in addition to many smaller works to help maintain this wonderful building, its contents and the surrounding churchyard. These projects will be dwarfed by the roof works now needed.

Donate Now

We would welcome contributions from anyone wishing to support the Campaign Roof Appeal :

1) Send a cheque payable to: Crediton Church Campaign c/o Parish Office, Boniface Centre, Church Lane Crediton EX17 2AH

2) Donate online here: at BT MyDonate Campaign Roof Appeal

3) Donate via BACS: National Westminster Bank plc High Street Crediton, Crediton Church Campaign, sort code 52­­­-30-06 account number 25387472

4) Look out for and support fund raising events as they are advertised.

Start of Works

Optimistically we would like to think that at least some of the phased works needed would be able to begin in summer 2016.

As part of the Campaign Appeal it is planned that a larger range of people will be able to engage more widely with Holy Cross and its extensive and unique heritage. It is planned to be able to produce a series of up to ten leaflets about different aspects of Holy Cross, organise a series of half day open days where people could come along and see parts of the building not normally open and ask the experts any questions they may have and to stage a Son Et Lumière about the history and building of Holy Cross on six evenings over two weeks in September 2015.


Water leaking into the church in the area of the south choir aisle

A successful Campaign Appeal launch was held on Saturday 3 May at 11am.  Appeal chairman Bill Jerman welcomed around 50 people to the launch and gave a brief overview of the project before reading out the following message of support from Appeal Patron Nick McKinnel Bishop of Crediton.

I am delighted to add my support to the Holy Cross Campaign Roof Appeal. It is a daunting project which will require substantial effort and considerable generosity. Fortunately Holy Cross is deeply valued for its beauty, its history, its worship and the role it plays within the town and county. Now is the time for all of us to give our backing to those organising the Appeal to ensure that this wonderful church continues to inspire future generations.

Appeal Chairman


Crediton Rector Nigel Guthrie formally launched the Appeal and afterwards cut the two celebratory cakes with Glenda Hills the appeal treasurer.  This was followed by the presentation of a cheque for £4,000 by Mike Beskeen, treasurer of the Friends of Crediton Church. A sum of £4,412 was donated at the launch.

The total raised to-date is £78,000.00


More Information

Further information about this Campaign Appeal is available from the Appeal Chairman Bill Jerman, 12 Blagdon Close, Crediton, EX17 1EL, tel 01363 772865 or email admin@creditonparishchurch.org.uk.


logo-smartwater   roofa22

Crediton Parish Church roof and premises are protected with CCTV and motion sensors

in addition to Smartwater.