PARISHIONERS are keeping their fingers crossed that lottery bosses will release thousands of pounds towards urgent repair works.
Holy Trinity Church in Seaton Carew raised thousands of pounds from a host of fundraising initiatives through its Wing and a Prayer appeal.
It means the Heritage Lottery Fund should hopefully soon release £48,000 in match funding towards repair work after Holy Trinity was placed on English Heritage’s Buildings at Risk register.
But the fundraising efforts are set to continue after builders’ quotes revealed the cost of the works will be around £190,000. Parishioners had been aiming for a target of £150,000.
Carol Cliffe, co-ordinator of the restoration appeal said: “We are just waiting to hear back from the Heritage Lottery Fund about releasing the funding for the second phase.
“The quotes from the builders were quite a bit higher than we were hoping for so we are working even harder to find the rest of the money and the journey continues.”
The church has applied for grants from four more potential funders to help them meet the new target.
It was tasked with raising £50,000 outstanding by March for the lottery to release the funding.
Carol said: “We did just manage to scrape in on the funding so we were delighted.”
Last year English Heritage gave Holy Trinity £8,000 to pay for technical inspections and wildlife surveys.
Holy Trinity, in Crawford Street, is in need of urgent repair work after around 200 years of being battered by the elements.
Parishioners launched the restoration appeal around two years ago to spearhead fundraising from church events while supporters came up with ideas including parishioner Julie Cordiner who wrote a book about the history of the parish.
The church choir has also produced a CD of their music with proceeds going towards the fund.
And parishioners have been encouraged to sponsor stones in the brickwork that are in need of replacing.
Carol added: “People have been very generous with support coming from the parish and far and wide.
“And other church parishes have been very generous.”