Historic church up for sale

By Ian Dipple Wednesday 08 January 2014 Updated: 08/01 17:42

AN HISTORIC Redditch church with links to the town's needlemaking industry has been put up for sale.

Offers in the region of £200,000 are being sought for St George's Church in Smallwood which was closed in 2012, two years after proposals were first made to shut it due to a dwindling congregation and rising costs.

The Grade II listed Victorian building was consecrated in 1876 as a chapel of ease and is daughter church of St Stephen's in Redditch Town Centre.

It is believed the main employers of the town, the needlemakers, did not want their factory workers going to the same church as them and so established a new one on the eastern edge of the town.

The building was designed by Worcestershire born architect Frederick Preedy.

Ian Parker, a partner in John Truslove which is marketing the church along with agents A Victor Powell, said: "It is a beautiful building and deserves a new future.

"It retains many original features, including stained glass windows and exposed beams. It is so sad. The building was only extended in the early 1990s to include a church hall, WCs and kitchen. But it is no different to many other such properties which can no longer be supported.

"There could be a number of possibilities for it going forward, but certainly a new vision is required."

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