Regarding improvements being made to St Gregory’s Church in Sudbury, I agree the present facilities are old and need improving.
The plan to open the north door is good because it is necessary to create another exit from the church to evacuate it quickly.
The vestry refurbishment, with stairs to an upper floor, is a very good idea and will bring that part of the church up to date.
My objection to the plans is where the toilets are being placed, the lowering of the tower floor to accommodate wheelchairs and the fact that these plans will reduce the capability of the church by about 50 seats.
The folly of this was seen on Remembrance Sunday when the church was full to overflowing, with people standing and others outside not able to get in.
My other main point is that if you lower the tower floor by about two feet and, while doing this, find archaeological remains, you then have to call in the archaeologists to do their work which you have to pay for.
I think the parochial church council (PCC) is taking a huge financial risk when there are other alternatives for the siting of the toilets.
I can remember being part of the team that had plans drawn up for a new church hall, linked to our church via the north door.
This project was stopped by other forces and it finished up costing St Gregory’s £16,000 and all we had was a set of plans.
This cost – over 20 years ago – nearly bankrupted the church, so you may understand why I’m being cautious at this time.