169 years’ worship ends

By Richard Wright

Sunday, February 2, 2014

 

169 years’ worship ends

The thanksgiving service at Holy Trinity Church, Ryde. Picture by Peter Boam.

HOLY Trinity in Ryde may have closed its doors for the final time as an Anglican church but there are hopes it may have a community use in the future.

Isle of Wight archdeacon, the Ven Peter Sutton, said future use of the building depended upon a structural survey of the church, which had been used for worship for 169 years.

The final service took place on Sunday after a service of thanksgiving for the life of the church was held the day before.

The Church of England decided to close the Dover Street church because of dwindling congregations despite a campaign to save it.

The church was built in 1845 to the design of architect Thomas Hellyer and is one of the twin landmark spires of Ryde.

The archdeacon said: "To close a church is a dreadfully difficult thing to do but sometimes it has to be done. Holy Trinity is one of seven Anglican churches in Ryde.

"We wanted to give the community and the Island the opportunity to thank God for their church."

He conducted the thanksgiving service on Saturday. Sunday’s service was conducted by the Rev Barry Downer, who has looked after Holy Trinity in the run-up to closure.

"The services were very well attended, which shows the strong role the building had in the local community," said Canon Sutton.

"We hope there is some sort of possibility for community use by some form of social enterprise but it has to be appropriate use.

"English Heritage, quite rightly, values the building, which is so important as one of the twin spires which welcome people to the Island."

Reporter: richardw@iwcpmail.co.uk

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