About The Archway Project
A Churches Conservation Trust and Rural Development Programme for England project to revitalize 14 Lincolnshire churches
The Churches Conservation Trust is the national charity protecting historic churches at risk. With the Trust’s support over 340 beautiful buildings are kept open and in use – living once again at the heart of their communities. CCT’s churches are of international importance and interest and our estate is the largest single collection of historic churches in the country. Thousands of volunteers put on events, provide a friendly welcome and help to maintain the churches and churchyards, and almost 2 million people visit our churches each year.
These 14 unique and atmospheric CCT churches are clustered around the attractive market town of Louth. The churches are mostly Grade 1 or 2* listed and have amazing original architecture, carvings, wall paintings and stained glass. Four artists, Derek Hunt (Stained Glass Artist), David Ball and Cora Glasser (Glassball) and Joel Stickley (Lincolnshire Poet Laureate) have been appointed to work with local community groups, schools and volunteers to build their experiences, ideas and stories into finished art works which will form an innovative arts trail linking the churches. This contemporary art will interpret and develop the existing historic art and community reminiscences’ to provide an intriguing new reason to visit the churches. As part of this activity, Glassball have developed this project website to be a window on their commission and where people can post their photographs, recorded audio, written works etc., from thoughts on weddings, to past events at the Churches. You can also find out about up-coming events and volunteering opportunities.
ArChWay | EXCHANGE is the creative interpretation commission by Glassball, supported by The Churches Conservation Trust and its volunteers. Glassball focused on the many intimate voices of the communities, the churches and the surrounding landscapes – exploring the human qualities of these buildings, the marks left by people who used them and those who still look after them today. By listening to and interpreting their stories and personal connections, Glassball has added an exciting new layer to the existing historical and social information for each of these churches.
These voices are communicated in the forms of still images, QR codes, short films, soundscapes, printed materials and website, in collaboration with the local population. They are shown as site responsive interpretation pieces which link the geographically isolated church buildings with the more ephemeral aspects of these unique places within the Lincolnshire landscape.
The ArChWay churches are the Lincolnshire Churches Conservation Trust churches: Burwell St Michael, Goltho St George, Great Steeping All Saints Old Church, Haltham-on-Bain St Benedict, Haugham All Saints, Kingerby St Peter, Little Cawthorpe St Helen, North Cockerington St Mary, Saltfleetby All Saints, Skidbrooke St Botolph, South Somercotes St Peter, Theddlethorpe All Saints, Waithe St Martin and Yarburgh St John the Baptist.
These beautiful and historic Churches once drew the attention of Sir John Betjeman and the artist John Piper. In a publication simply called “Church Poems” the sketch on the front is the Church of St. George, Goltho. This little book was a creative lament for the decline of these very special buildings through controlled dilapidation in the 1960’s and what this represented culturally. The Churches Conservation Trust needs to find ways of sustaining these amazing grade 1 and 11* listed buildings for the enjoyment of future generations. It needs to achieve this by developing their alternative use within the communities they once served.
Glassball’s creative interpretation commission ArChWay | EXCHANGE is part of the wider ArChWay project.
The ArChWay (Arts in Churches) project aims to develop local voluntary support, increase visitor numbers and improve community use of fourteen of the Churches Conservation Trust’s rural Lincolnshire churches. A range of activities took place over the course of the three year project which included:
– Community events and historic church coach tours
– Training courses and other support for volunteers
– Contemporary arts installations, arts workshops for the local community and schools, innovative digital interpretation and a community website
– Promotional leaflets, cycling routes, marketing material and links with the local tourism and business sectors
– Specialist conservation repairs and open days bringing the local community closer to our conservation craftspeople
– New brown tourism signs and public way marking fingerposts
– Student placements and live projects.
The ArChWay churches are the Lincolnshire CCT churches: Burwell St Michael, Goltho St George, Great Steeping All Saints Old Church, Haltham-on-Bain St Benedict, Haugham All Saints, Kingerby St Peter, Little Cawthorpe St Helen, North Cockerington St Mary, Saltfleetby All Saints, Skidbrooke St Botolph, South Somercotes St Peter, The ddlethorpe All Saints, Waithe St Martin and Yarburgh St John the Baptist.
The ArChWay (Arts in Churches) project is jointly funded for three years by The Churches Conservation Trust and the Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) via the Lincolnshire LEADER Action Groups – the Coastal Action Zone and the Lindsey Action Zone.
To find out more
See www.visitchurches.org.uk/archway for the latest information on opening times and access, interactive maps and downloadable guides.
T: 0113 244 1689