St Just-in-Penwith Parish Church has received a grant of £226,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund for an exciting heritage project called Raise the Roof!

Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, the project focuses on the complete replacement of the six sloped roof with an estimated 15,000 new Cornish slates.

The church is located at the very heart of the town. The roof replacement is expected to start in early autumn 2019 and be complete in time for spring 2020.

Andrew Burt, secretary of the church council and project manager for the Raise the Roof! appeal said: “We are overwhelmed by the news that the National Lottery has given us this grant. As a building of significant historical and architectural interest our Parish Church is deeply important to local residents and visitors alike. The whole town is thrilled that the National Lottery has recognised the need to preserve our heritage for future generations.”

The project will secure the church building for future generations, freeing up the church to develop its range of voluntary activities for the community. Current volunteer activities focus on supporting the vulnerable, on help, advice and guidance, as well as promoting local-national good causes.

St Just-in-Penwith Parish Church has a very rich history and the earliest written record thought to exist dates to 1254. The present church is medieval in origin and built in the classic Cornish pattern church of three aisles and a tall west tower.

A far more ancient church was rebuilt in 1334 and rededicated in 1336.

Key internal features of significant historical interest within the church building include:

• Selus Stone - an inscribed 5th or 6th Century memorial stone with Chi-Rho Monogram. The stone is thought to refer to Saint Selevan a brother of Saint Just

• Secco Wall Paintings - pre Reformation / 15th Century ‘Christ of the Trades’ and ‘Saint George and the Dragon’

• Memorial Cross Shaft - thought to be 8th – 10th century decorated with the Celtic style interlacing

• Flamboyant east window tracery - thought to be late 14th or early 15th century date.

• Piers, pillars and capitals exceptionally well carved and unusual for Cornish and remote rural churches.

The church is preparing an event to celebrate their fundraising success and their National Lottery award at 2pm on Saturday at St Just-in-Penwith Parish Church.