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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 March 2006, 16:07 GMT
Rebuilt church may never reopen
St David's, Carmarthen
St David's in Carmarthen has been closed since early November 2003
A west Wales church dedicated to St David due to reopen on 1 March following months of repairs may have to be pulled down instead.

More than 90,000 was raised to restore St David's in Carmarthen after part of the roof collapsed in a violent storm.

But workers have now found additional problems with the roof, tower and beams that could cost 250,000 to repair.

There will now be a series of meetings between church leaders and worshippers to decide the fate of the building.

The Welsh language church has been closed since November 2003 when falling masonry fell from the ceiling smashing pews in the church.

Work had been ongoing for the past year after fundraisers had managed to collect over 90,000 - some of which came from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Canon Patrick Thomas
The extra money we have to find has come as a big blow
Canon Patrick Thomas,

Canon Patrick Thomas raised around 14,000 by completing a centuries old pilgrimage to west Pembrokeshire.

But workers had to down tools when structural engineers found the building was too unsafe for them to continue.

Canon Thomas said: "We were hoping to re-open today.

"Now we will have to make a decision on its future but that will be up to the parochial church council - whether they want to raise the extra money or close the church."

He said rectifying the structural problems could cost 250,000 and a similar sum would need to be found within five years to re-roof the building.

Since it has been closed the congregation have been using the nearby English language Christ Church and they now be amalgamated.

"There will be a series of meetings to make sure everyone is fully consulted," he added.

"The extra money we have to find has come as a big blow."


SEE ALSO:
Storm damaged church to reopen
05 Jan 05 |  South West Wales
Pilgrimage to raise church roof
17 Feb 04 |  South West Wales


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