Meadgate Church has been renting the Orchards since 2014.  We now have the opportunity to purchase the Orchards from Essex County Council (ECC) for £650,000.  In addition, we will then need to spend an estimated £150,000 to undertake essential maintenance works.  If we do not manage to purchase the Orchards, then we will have to hand the building back to ECC.


The immediate need is to raise the £650,000 required to purchase the Orchards.


At the AGM on the 29th April 2018, the Church voted unanimously to proceed with the purchase, and at the PCC held on the 18th May, it was agreed to hold a Pledge Day on Sunday 24th June.  On the Pledge Day itself, an amazing £241,055 was pledged by way of one-off gifts, and £1,605 per month by way of increased monthly giving (both figures including Gift Aid).  Further pledges have been coming in since the Pledge Day and we are still open for more pledges.


Since then, Chelmsford Diocese has agreed to loan Meadgate Church £425,000, repayable over 20 years.  And Heads of Terms have been agreed with ECC.


The PCC, at its meeting on the 30th November, unanimously agreed to recommend proceeding with the purchase, and at the whole-Church meeting which took place during the morning worship at 10:30 on Sunday the 9th December, the Church voted to proceed with the purchase (For: 92, Against: 1, Abstensions: 2).


We will be calling in the pledges during the coming weeks and pushing ahead with the completion of the purchase.


We are still seeking further gifts to allow us reduce the amount that we borrow, and pay back the loan over 10 years rather than 20.


If you are not a member of the Church, but would like to contribute to this project, please get in touch in the first place with Tim Ball.  We would welcome gifts or legacies.


Rev Canon Tim Ball, Vicar Of Meadgate Church, says: "This purchase project is an exciting challenge for us all. We have a great opportunity before us and we are praying that by God's grace we will see our hopes and dreams fulfilled. It will establish our seven day a week ministry on a firm foundation."