March 2019 Update

Since our development project was launched in 2016 much detailed work has been done with the Architects CPL Ltd, and all the necessary planning and building regulations obtained. Our preferred construction contractor has been selected and this is Greendale Construction, a relatively local company (Poole based), who have significant experience with new building work and extensions to Church premises. They have been notified of their selection and are happy to work with the Church and accommodate the Church’s expected programme of work in 2019. Finance is of course a major part of this project and we now have some confirmed grants, and a significant amount of fund raising done by our own members either by direct giving or by specific fund raising events, details of which are shown on the back of this brochure. We need now to concentrate our efforts in fundraising and direct giving to have the necessary funds in place so that building work is able to commence as has been planned, in June/July of this year.

Church and Community

As a church we reminded ourselves in the recent publicity card that Jesus challenged us to be Salt & Light to its community and that we have a strapline “Loving God- Loving People”

From my contact with a wide cross section of people in the area and those who use our building I am made all too aware of those who consider that this church has made a difference to their family or them as an individual. The test will always be; “What difference does this place make to others?”

There will be some who rightly say these premises are brilliant as they are. However we also have to remember those who were visionary enough to make significant improvements to the building under Link 2000 scheme and we thank them for that, but we cannot stand still. Life moves on and the needs of the local area change, for example the need for a youth facility and the way in which people relate to and engage with faith.

These days a coffee shop for example has become the place to hold meetings, undertake business and to meet others in the community. It is my belief that by completing these plans, we will be better equipped to be salt and light in our ever changing community.

Deacon Brian Purchase

The plans for the alterations and new building work are the product of much thought and prayer at church vision mornings, discussions between the development group and our architect, CPL (Church Projects Ltd.). Following the special meeting of the Church Council on Sunday 28th October, the order of the construction works was changed to reflect the advice given by the Southampton District of the Methodist Church and our national body, the Methodist Connexion.

Phase 1 and 2:   Extending the Link welcome area to provide a greatly improved open and attractive area for all the community groups to see plus demonstrate the many and varied activities that take place within the building. Also to amend the access to the Link from the main church hall as well as additional toilet facilities and a new coffee/refreshment bar with lounge area. Also to update and improve the toilet and washroom areas within the area of the building currently used by the Pre-School Group which are in a poor condition.

External works to install a new fire escape, demolish the old World War 2 Bomb shelter, create an external area for the Pre-School play group that use the premises daily, and update/improve the car park.

Phase 3 Works: To provide a lift to the first floor community rooms and accommodation,new toilets for both able bodied and disabled, new kitchen facilities and enhanced room layouts

If funds permit, and to keep costs as low as possible, it is hoped and expected that phase 3 works will follow on directly after the completion of phase 1 and 2.

To All Members and Friends of St. James Road Methodist Church

It seems a long time since we launched the discussions about ‘Connect’ and shared with you our vision for the Church’s future, but we continue to be committed to the project and the work we hope to achieve in the improved facilities.
We are grateful for all the contributions that have been made so far but the work of fundraising is not over yet. And so, once again, we are asking you to consider how you can contribute to this work, so that we can serve our God and our community better. Thank you.Christine Coram – Minister

Christine Coram – Minister

Costs, Grants and Fundraising

Planned Phase 1 and 2 Costs versus income: £703,572.58
Link Extension, New Pre-School Toilets, fenced Play Area, Demolition of Air Raid Shelter and Reconfigured Car Park.
Cash Balance in Hand £207.040.58
Grants Confirmed or Promised £264,000.00
Donation Promised £65,000.00
Additional Grants Applied for and at present Outstanding £372,000.00
Total Confirmed Funds £536,040.58
Phase 1 and 2 Costs to find: £167,532.00
Planned Phase 3 Costs: £346,501.23
Lift Installation, New Toilets and Disabled Toilet, New Kitchen and Reconfiguring of other First Floor Rooms


If we are successful with our applications for Connexional and Circuit grants, which amount to £380,000 we will have sufficient funds to be able to start building work on phases 1 and 2 during the summer, and move on to raising funds for phase 3 and the Lift.

How Can We Respond?

  • With an outright gift now, and a promise of a future payment.
  • With a regular weekly, monthly, quarterly or annual contribution.
  • With an interest free loan over a period of your choice.
  • Organising a fundraising event.
  • For taxpayers, any contribution can be gift aided which enables us to reclaim tax at the rate of 25%. Thus a gift of £500 would be increased to £625, or a gift of £1000 would be increased to £1250.