Ground-breaking at All Souls, Bolton

Our Chairman Loyd Grossman hosted an a Ground-breaking event at our flagship regeneration project - All Souls in Bolton on 24 September 2013.

Loyd was joined by Cllr Colin Shaw the Mayor of Bolton and Tiffany Hunt Chair of the Hertiage Lottery Fund North West Committee to mark this momentous occasion. Inayat Omarji Chair of the All Souls Crompton Community Centre was also there as well as the whole project team. 

Local school children processed the historic All Souls banners in advance of them being taken away for conservation. The children will be designing a new banner during the construction phase; this will be revealed at reopening of the building in Autumn 2014.  

Local Gujrati poets also read some of their poetry that they had written specially for the event. 

All Souls is set to become a modern, multi-purpose space for the local community and people of Bolton.  CCT has in the last 18 months secured approximately £4 million in funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to ensure the successful delivery of the project which has been in the making for over six years.

CCT has been working with the All Souls Crompton Community Centre to recreate All Souls as an inspirational place for:

  • Heritage, skills and creativity 
  • Events, meetings and business
  • Connecting the community

The ground-breaking event was an opportunity for the various partners involved in bringing the project to fruition to celebrate getting to this stage and anticipate the project’s completion in 2014. 

The event created a lot of local interest and featured on BBC North West Tonight and BBC Radio Manchester as well as in the Bolton News. 

Restoration plans for the Grade II* listed Church include taking out the existing pews and replacing them with two ‘pods’ that will sit within the church building creating a ‘building within a building’ – this means the historic fabric of the church will be largely untouched. 

These innovative new structures will be the first of their kind in the UK. Designed by OMI Architects the adaptation will be carried out by a local family building firm - Walter Carefoot & Sons - who will also work with the specialist heritage sub-contractor Lambert Walker.

The construction of the new pods and repair and conservation of the historic fabric will take approximately twelve months and the revitalised All Souls is due to open in autumn 2014.

 Loyd Grossman, Chairman of The Churches Conservation Trust said

“This exciting project will put an important heritage building which was at risk, back at the heart of community life.  It’s very satisfying to see building work start after so many people locally and at CCT have worked so hard to make it a reality.  I am hugely grateful to them and to the Heritage Lottery Fund and other funders for their support and look forward to walking through the doors of a reopened All Souls next year.”

Tiffany Hunt, Chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund North West Committee, said:

"All Souls is a significant landmark in Bolton and these innovative plans mean that a redundant and at risk heritage building can be brought back to life.  We at the Heritage Lottery Fund are committed to opening up our heritage for everyone to benefit from and enjoy and we are delighted that work is now starting to bring this much-loved Bolton building back into the heart of the community."

Colin Carefoot, Managing Director of Walter Carefoot & Sons said

“This innovative project will breathe life again into the disused church, and also provide an opportunity for training and learning experiences in traditional craft skills. We’re excited to see how modern architecture can be incorporated into a heritage building. We are looking forward to working with the project team, the CCT, and the All Souls Crompton Community leaving a lasting legacy that everyone involved can be truly proud of.“   

Inayat Omarji, Chairman of the All Souls Crompton Community Centre 

“This is a great project that has been in the making for some time. In late Autumn 2014, All Souls will be the place to be, generating opportunities, raising aspirations and creating innovation with the local community and partners.

The centre will be a hub for all, it is unique heritage will once again create a flow of visitors that will inspire and create a place for dialogue and partnerships.

A wide range of activities and opportunities are being planned before the opening, get involved and be a part of the journey.”