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Last Updated: Thursday, 5 August, 2004, 07:05 GMT 08:05 UK
Villagers mourns loss of church
St John's
St John's was attended by a congregation of nine
An East Sussex village which has lost its only shop, post office and school looks set to lose its church as well.

The vicar of St James' at Vines Cross, near Horam, says the church - which has a congregation of nine - is too costly to keep running.

The building, which is constructed of corrugated sheets of metal, was originally a shop store and converted into a church in 1911.

The Reverend Mark Redhouse said a church presence would be maintained.

Local support

"The building was given for the sake of the community and we are committed to keeping something here," he said.

"But the building has come to the end of its useful life and we need to do something with it."

Caretaker May Kindratt said: "We've already lost our garage, pub, school and shop.

"To think we could lose our little church as well is devastating - it is the mainstay of our village."

Residents say St James' has always enjoyed strong local support - the altar, font and carpet have all been donated in memory of former villagers.

Now it has been closed, they are waiting to hear from Mr Redhouse about how the site it is to be redeveloped.





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