Work under way on tabernacle
ROOFING work on Whitfield Tabernacle is under way as part of major project to rescue it.
The stabilisation and roofing work on the 17th century meeting house is expected to take until the autumn to complete.
A £700,000 grant was awarded last year by the West of England Combined Authority (Weca) to refurbish the building sufficiently to allow visitors to see inside.
It was originally commissioned in 1741 by George Whitfield, an early Methodist who preached to the miners and manual workers of Kingswood in the open air.
Whitfield Tabernacle Trust chair Anthony Hick said: “Getting a roof on the building has always been one of our key first objectives.
“That would allow us to at least run a few events and install some information panels, even if full development was not possible.
“However, thanks to support from South Gloucestershire council and Weca it’s looking likely that we’ll be able to go ahead and fully develop the Tabernacle for a range of community uses sooner.”
The Grade I listed building was left derelict following an arson attack and was last used for services nearly three decades ago.
The Tabernacle forms part of the Kingswood town centre masterplan for regeneration.