News & Progress

Gala Recital in the gracious presence of our patron HRH The Duke of Kent

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LINDA HIRST: MY LIFE IN SONG

A GALA RECITAL IN AID OF TRANSFORMING ST MARY ABBOTS

7.00PM, THURSDAY 13 OCTOBER 2016

Internationally renowned classical & contemporary vocalist, Linda Hirst, presents an evening of diverse musical delights, with a programme that will include Purcell, Aperghis, Schubert, Cage, Debussy, Berio (Sequenza 11), Bowles and Ives.
Mezzosoprano Linda’s international career has covered an extraordinary range, spanning early music, ground-breaking Baroque performances, an international specialism in new music, working closely with Berio, Ligeti, Henze, MacMillan, Weir – giving many first performances of new work.

She was a Swingle Singer and founder of Electric Phoenix, worked with Pink Floyd and The Two Ronnies, performed at the Proms, Edinburgh Festival, Convent Garden.     Read More

Fashion Show news

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We have decided to reschedule the major fundraising event planned for Thursday 15 September, when congregation Lisa Redman was to show her new Collection as a prelude to London Fashion Week.

We have found that with so many key people away throughout the summer it was not attracting the media and publicity attention that the generous participation of so many significant players deserved, and rather than use up this asset of generous support to less-than-full effect we have decided to reschedule the show until Spring 2017. We are very grateful to all who have worked so hard and so generously. Read More

Fashion Show on Eve of London Fashion Week – The Lisa Redman Collection – 15 September 2016

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We are delighted to be showcasing the LISA REDMAN collection in the beautiful, candlelit atmosphere of the church, to raise funds for the transformation of St Mary Abbots, Kensington.

 

Timed to coincide with the eve of London Fashion Week, the show will feature professional level production values.   We are also blessed with the support of Errol Douglas MBE who will be styling the hair of our professional models, including Amber Le Bon.

Guests will be seated in the church pews and using the, cathedral scale, church aisles as our catwalk.   Read More

TRANSFORMING ST MARY ABBOTS

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Following the completion of the major works to the roof at the end of 2015, we felt the word APPEAL didn’t really capture the ethos of what we’re going to achieve next at St Mary Abbots.

So, under Fr Gillean’s chairmanship, we are now using the mantle TRANSFORMING ST MARY ABBOTS to inspire our fundraising. Read More

Phase II – officially launched

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Last night the congregation of St Mary Abbots Church came together to celebrate the next, exciting phase of our regeneration.   Rev’d Prebenary Gillean Craig, Appeal Chairman, gave an inspiring tour of the church to explain the entire Masterplan of works in context.

The next project is vital to ensure the church is accessible for generations to come, with the creation of a discreet extension to house lavatory facilities, with baby-change and wheelchair accessibility, and a kitchen.  The current lack of facilities limits the range of events it can accommodate, and reduces it’s accessibility to the wider community. Read More

Sculpture by HRH Princess Louise restored and on public display

Angel - relocated - 2 ‘The Angel’ statue carved by HRH Princess Louise, the fourth daughter of Queen Victoria, has been restored and re-positioned so it is now clearly visible within the Resurrection Chapel.   Princess Louise was one of the few women sculptors of the 19th century and by the age of 20 she had exhibited at the Royal Academy. Her most famous work, a marble statue of Queen Victoria at the time of her accession, stands outside the East Front of the palace.   The statue was created for the chapel, as a memorial to two of the princess’s brothers, Princes Alfred and Leopold and reflects the historic connections between St Mary Abbots Church and Kensington Palace; a connection which continues today.   Read More

2016 – The Next Phase

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We are fundraising to build an extension, to house kitchen and toilet facilities, and make improvements to the interior layout. This will ensure our magnificent church is relevant for modern day community life and worship.

One of the greatest current shortcomings is the impossibility of providing refreshments after events and services in the church – or of offering reasonable lavatory facilities, with baby-change and wheelchair accessibility.   This greatly limits the range of events that we would like to accommodate, and reduces the ways in which we can serve our community.

Early in 2016 we will be hosting a series of events, to officially explain the plans for this phase of the improvements to the church, which we will publicise shortly. Read More

Completion of roof works

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We have reached the appeal’s first major milestone; the completion of the essential new Nave, Aisles, Porches and South Transept Roofs and repairs to the High Level Stonework.

This was a vast area to replace, comparable in scale to that of a cathedral roof.  As well as replacing all the slates, a new permeable membrane has been installed to provide far better heat insulation.

High level gutters, drains and downcomers have been repaired and improved to cope with the increase in extreme rainfall.  In addition to the expected stonework repairs we also commissioned two replacement gable crosses, using George Gilbert Scott’s original designs, as the originals were damaged beyond repair. Read More

Bless this Roof

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The new roof is complete and this morning it was blessed by Rev’d Gillean Craig.

Ascending the scaffolding in his robes (without a safety rope or hard hat), he was watched on by children from St Mary Abbots School and some of the excellent craftsmen who have worked so tirelessly to deliver the new roof.

We are thrilled to be water tight, and will be free of scaffolding, ready to welcome thousands of people through our doors for a packed programme in the weeks before Christmas.

  Read More

Ways to support the Appeal

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Our website is currently only built to handle online donations – either as a one off donation or as regular giving.  However, there are more ways to donate and we’re working on updating the website to reflect that.

In the meantime, here is some guidance about the different ways you can also make a donations:

By cheque payable to ‘St  Mary Abbots Appeal’.  Please post cheques to:

St Mary Abbots Appeal St Mary Abbots Centre Vicarage Gate London W8 4HN

If you are eligible for Giftaid (a UK tax payer), we can claim an additional 25p for every pound you donate, from HMRC, and we would really appreciate it if you could include a SMA Giftaid declaration form with your donation, which you can download here. Read More