Over the coming months, we have much to share with you about the building project at St Mary with St Alban – ‘Building Anew’. With Richmond Council granting planning permission for this long-awaited new development so we are now, excitingly, into the next phase. This will involve many elements, not least raising the money needed to build it.

Following preparation of a detailed initial cost plan by our Quantity Surveyor, and taking into account the funds already available, it has been confirmed that we need to raise £1 million. We are currently putting together a team of fundraisers and will be launching our Building Anew Fundraising Appeal at all our services on Sunday 23 July.

If you are not already aware, the overriding aim of this project is to make our beautiful and historic church fit for purpose in the 21st century and beyond. A description of the scheme is available here.

The new facilities will mean we can offer after- service refreshments on site, and, crucially, people will no longer have to cross a busy road in order to reach the toilets in the Parish Hall. This will be particularly helpful for the young, elderly and those who have travelled a long way to our church for a wedding, baptism or funeral.

The new multi-purpose meeting space - the Garden Room - will allow us to run Children's Church adjacent to our Sunday services and also provide an overflow space for the congregation at busy services via an audio-visual link to the church.

Weekday church and community uses such as bereavement courses, our toddler group, Bible study and baptism/marriage preparation evenings, will all benefit from this new building and it will enable us to host more community activities in the church, including school educational visits, concerts and music groups, seminars and churchyard teas.

The new development has been designed to be fully accessible and sustainable. Ramps will enable access for all to every area of the church. Heating will be provided by ground-source heat pump and there will be heat recovery in the ventilation system. The whole design prioritises the use of sustainable materials and will be extremely well insulated. A new digital organ will be installed to work better with our existing church's acoustics and produce top quality sound.

We are delighted that the Venerable Richard Frank, Archdeacon of Middlesex, will be leading our services on Sunday 23 July to spearhead the launch of the appeal. Please come along and join us then.

If you would like to get involved in our fundraising or communications team in any capacity, large or small, we would love to hear from you! Please contact us at future@teddingtonparish.org or speak to a member of the clergy or Steven Randall.