Bell Tower efforts are marked - The Evesham Observer

Bell Tower efforts are marked

Evesham Editorial 8th Dec, 2018   0

A CELEBRATION of Evesham’s Bell Tower Appeal was held at the historic site with a plaque unveiling to mark the efforts of volunteers who raised more than £500,000 for the repair and restoration of the iconic bell tower three years ago.

The tower, once part of the town’s abbey, was shut in 2012 over safety fears, but public access was reopened following repairs but the historic site last had work done on it in 1951.

Built in about 1530 to hold the bells of Evesham Abbey, the site is one of the few buildings to survive the dissolution of Evesham Abbey by Henry VIII.

The Bell Tower Appeal became necessary when shards of stonework began to be discovered on the walkways of Abbey Park and the churchyard following heavy storms.

Led by the tireless efforts of Sue Ablett, Stan Brotherton and Chris Povey, the appeal team dedicated their time to two years of grant applications and many fund-raising events, which were both initiated and supported by generous individuals and charitable organisations from the town and surrounding area.

Dr Ablett and Mr Brotherton, the respective Chair and Treasurer of the appeal said: “We were extremely lucky to have had such fantastic support from the people of Evesham, and the Vale. We couldn’t have achieved so much, and in such a short period of time, without such amazing help.”

Chris Povey, Evesham Bell Tower captain said: “Without such funds being collected, this magnificent building, which in many ways is Evesham’s landmark building, could so very easily have been fenced off to prevent more shards of stone falling down onto people.

“This would have been a very sad episode in the town’s history had this happened. Its glory can now be enjoyed again for decades to come.”

The Rev Andrew Spurr, Vicar of Evesham, said: “When the fabric of the tower became unsafe, we had no choice but to initiate an appeal.  I count us very fortunate to have had the calibre of people who were prepared to undertake the task of fundraising, which was a substantial piece of work.”

Visitors to the bell tower can view the commemorative plaque which is set in the wall in the bell tower arch.

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