A new church office and pastoral care centre which offers practical support and advice to people with a range of problems has opened its doors.
St George’s Church Hub, at 27-29 St George’s Street, Stamford used to be home to a sports shop but has undergone months of extensive renovation work.
The building was bought for St George’s Church by an unidentified donor to replace a rented office at 15 Maiden Lane which was no longer big enough.
Members of the church community managed to raise £220,000 to fund the Grade II-listed three-storey building’s refurbishment.
The new building is home to clergy, church staff and volunteers – plus two staff members from debt counselling charity Christians Against Poverty (CAP).
It has a number of meeting rooms, which can also be used as prayer spaces, and offices.
The hub is open between 10am and 4pm Monday to Friday.
As well as being used by people enquiring about general church matters such as weddings, baptisms and funerals, the pastoral care team is available to assist those experiencing problems with homelessness, financial matters and other personal difficulties.
Rev Martyn Taylor, rector of St George’s Church, said the new building was a great asset.
He said: “We are now in a very prominent position just off the High Street and directly opposite Marks and Spencer in an area of high footfall.
“We had outgrown our former office in Maiden Lane and this building fit our needs perfectly.
“It’s bright, modern and welcoming and is in the heart of the town. We’ve already had lots of positive comments from visitors.”
The renovation project was led by local architect Ross Thain who said the building now fits in much better with its surroundings.
He said: “The old shopfront had been painted black and was rather unsightly.
“Now the building work has been completed it is back to its best.
“There has been a lot building work carried in the street recently and its looks great – better than it has done for years.”
Bishop of Lincoln Christoper Lowson will visit the hub this Sunday and will lead worship at St George’s Church at 9.15am and 11am.