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More than £250,000 granted to churches for projects

Thirteen churches across the diocese have been successful in the latest round of grants from the Development Fund. 

To date more than £3.8million has been allocated to parishes for a range of projects since the Fund was established in 2019. It was created to divulge up to £1million a year for the growing needs of communities in our area, supporting Christ-like church projects to be missionally creative in their local context, reflect where God is at work and encourage learning.  

Reaching out into the communities we serve, with a focus on children and young people, is featured heavily in this round of awards. Of the 13 grants made, half were linked to work with families and encouraging them to explore our churches. In addition to this, St Lawrence's Church in Hungerford will undergo a transformation to enable better use of the church building, funds to host a Passion Play for churches in Oxford during Easter, as well as a projector to support this year’s Come and See Lent course

Kate Newman, PCC member at St Lawrence's Church, Hungerford, said: “At the moment the church is one large open plan space which is difficult to heat and doesn't work for break-out groups such as Power Pack, our children's church. Our church is the largest building in Hungerford but we were becoming less and less relevant as a building for what the community required, with no accessible toilets or functioning kitchen.

“We want the community to see the church as their building, open seven days a week for church and community use. We are aware of various local groups struggling to find a base and, and as a not-for-profit organisation, we can provide this. We are upgrading our church building to be a relevant and valued resource for the needs of people today. Our improved facilities will allow us to build bridges and forge more links between St Lawrence’s and our community of Hungerford.”

Frank Hawkins, church warden at St Michael and All Angels Hughenden, explained what they hope their grant for a children and families minister will achieve. He said: “What we are hoping to do is to really encourage the links between the children, families and the community to build up much stronger, closer relationships so we can get to know all the children around us, better than we do now. 

“We want to encourage the families and children to realise the church is a wonderful, friendly place and not just a building.”
The deadline for applications for the next round of awards is the end of October. To find out more about how to apply visit the Diocese of Oxford website.


  • Bampton with Clanfield – to grow personal faith by delivering an Alpha course in Bampton Village Hall.
  • Quainton and Oving with Pitchcott – to reach families and develop a more vibrant church culture by employing a families and community enabler.
  • Church of St Peter and St Paul, Broadwell – to increase use of the church both for religious services and for wider community activities by installing improved heating.
  • St Mary's, Ivinghoe – to resource and promote a newly launched toddler group and a series of children's craft workshops.
  • Farnham Royal with Hedgerley – to cultivate more community outreach to children, young people, schools and families by recruiting a community, schools and youth leader.
  • St Michael at the North Gate, Oxford – to provide technical support for an outdoor community passion play over Easter 2024 jointly with other churches in Oxford.
  • St Michael and All Angels, Hughenden – to improve engagement with children and families and grow faith in the community by employing a full time children and families minister.
  • St Lawrence, Hungerford – to develop further engagement and outreach with the local community by upgrading and creating practical, flexible, warm spaces within the church building.
  • St James, Downley – to support more families of children with additional needs and to share faith by employing an occupational therapist for Growing Hope, High Wycombe and growing an accessible Messy Church at St James'.
  • St Matthew's, Oxford – to provide technical support for an outdoor community passion play over Easter 2024 jointly with other churches in Oxford.
  • Chenies and Little Chalfont – to grow children's and families work across the parish and to see more people taking courageous steps of faith by employing a children and families minister.
  • Wolverton benefice – to support those exploring faith by buying a projector to use for a Come and See Lent course and other missional opportunities.
  • Lambourn Valley benefice – to help children become confident, enthusiastic singers, grow spiritually and offer their singing in worship by starting an after-school singing club.


Page last updated: Tuesday 20th February 2024 12:09 PM
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