New community hub opens at Holy Redeemer, Lamorbey

On Sunday 15 September, the Bishop of Rochester, the Rt Rev James Langstaff, officially opened a new and accessible hall facility at Holy Redeemer Church in Lamorbey

The bright and airy facilities now include a new kitchen, accessible toilets and children’s play area.

The aim is to provide an inclusive and welcoming community hub with community café, and events for wellbeing to help tackle social isolation, improve mental health and encourage people to become more active.

View a gallery of pictures from the day here

A service of thanksgiving, followed by an afternoon tea, gave visitors the opportunity to look around the refurbished hall. Among the well-wishers were the MP for Bexley and Sidcup the Rt Hon James Brokenshire, and the Deputy Mayor for Bexley, Councillor James Hunt.

Speaking at the service, Bishop James said:

“As Christians, we are encouraged, through prayer, activities, pastoral care, and through all the things we are engaged in, to seek the wellbeing of the places in which we are. This aspiration is at the centre of the project here at Holy Redeemer.

“I am really heartened to hear about the variety of different groups that the church is already in contact with and the clear vision they have for how they want to use the building. They truly have a desire to see these facilities fully used for the wellbeing of the people in this place and to the glory of God.”

A representative of the Holy Redeemer Development Team, Brian Ayto, said that they were keen to attract providers of sports and physical activity classes:

“We want to encourage physical activities to assist in improving the health of the local community, as well as provide a venue for those who might usually be limited by the availability of suitable spaces and activities for their needs, such as the blind and partially sighted.”

Indeed, one of the first events to be held in the new hall will be an interactive event on Wednesday 25 September for people with sight loss; as well as being able to speak to experts about eye-health and find out about the latest technology available for people with sight loss, there will be sessions showcasing sports for blind people, including tennis, cricket and martial arts – led by Metro Blind Sport.

The new, Holy Redeemer Community Hall, has been funded through a combination of charitable contributions. These include a generous grant of £150,000 from the London Marathon Charitable Trust, parish donations, and a grant from the Diocese of Rochester’s Missional Property Fund.

The Rev Mell Jemmett, Vicar of Holy Redeemer said:

“So many hours of hard work, tears, prayers and passion have gone into the progress we see today to provide these modern and accessible facilities for our church and community centre.

“We’re very excited for the future, as we work out how we will be a vibrant and welcoming place of Christian life and worship, but also an inclusive centre for the community with an identity and purpose.”

As the former Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Mr James Brokenshire said that the new hall embodied all that was needed to bring people together:

“While we may see an increasingly interconnected world on social media and the internet, it’s actually physical connections that bring people together and that mark a community out.

“Having places to meet and hubs is vital in making that happen. I know this community centre will be a wonderful, positive, uplifting resource for our community and will bring great benefit to this area.”

Anyone interested in hiring the new facilities, joining the community team or in making a donation to the church centre community development fund, can get in touch at: office@theholyredeemer.co.uk or call 0208 302 5356




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