The Project

 

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Christ Church has an exciting opportunity to construct a purpose built facility, on the site of the old church, for worship and community development to support people and communities in Norris Green, Liverpool. As part of the process, we are taking steps to identify and articulate our community’s needs, and to take practical, collective action to address them.  This site is designed to communicate our vision and hopes for this project and keep you updated on its progress.

The Context

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Norris Green is a large residential area of Liverpool and is classed as an ‘Urban Priority Area’ and is within the 2% of most deprived areas nationally. Whilst most who live here will talk of the sense of togetherness and neighbourliness, many still struggle either financially or socially, and statistics paint a difficult picture for the area as a whole. Over the years, Christ Church has sought to work with community partners to help improve the lives of those facing multiple disadvantage and we believe that this development project will enhance our capacity to serve the local community by contributing a significant community asset at a time of reduced spending in the public sector

The History

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The congregation of Christ Church has been serving the people of Norris Green since the beginning, growing with the estate as it gradually populated. Church life began in 1927 in an old army hut on Scarisbrick Road, moving to new art deco buildings on Sedgemoor Road in 1932. By 2005 the buildings were in a terrible state and we made the bold decision to move into Leamington Primary School and to convert the vicarage into a Church Community Centre, providing space for our continuing community engagement and ministry in Norris Green.  In doing this, we moved from maintaining the old building to trying to build a ‘mission shaped’ church that is really effective in serving the community today.   See Our Story

The Need

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Many vital charitable functions and services are currently housed in this centre. The diverse offering to the community has helped to build on an established reputation within the neighbourhood. Christ Church has also partnered with other local churches to develop the charity, Triple C (Liverpool), whose offices are based in the centre.

This high level of demand means that the centre is now running close to full capacity and is unsuitable for some activities, leading to the use of other neighbourhood buildings. Rising costs and limited facilities have also led the church to review its use of Leamington Road School as a worship centre. Since 2005, the worshipping community has grown to over 80 people, and the spaces designed for primary education are becoming less usable for a growing worshipping community of all ages.

Looking wider, the construction of new houses has gone some way to help social housing shortages, but shared facilities in the area remain relatively sparse and Norris Green has been identified by Liverpool council as a key community to regenerate with long term plans being implemented. This Church and Community development project was conceived to improve the effectiveness of our engagement with the people of Norris Green, to provide attractive, welcoming and usable shared space, and to give a sense of ownership to a innovative landmark to the community.

The Challenge

In listening to the needs and challenges faced by the Norris Green community, Christ Church has responded by commissioning a design that will be adequate to meet them.  Christ Church has pledged £250,000 of its own resources to this project and now we are looking to establish partnerships with people and organisations who are prepared to invest in this exciting, ambitious project- together we need to raise £1.44m.

Our dream is of an inspiring, high quality building which will enable us, through working  with the local community, to make a significant and lasting difference to the economic, social, environmental and spiritual wellbeing of the people of Norris Green.

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For more information about Christ Church and this project, please explore the blog and get in Contact

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