A flood damaged Calder Valley church is celebrating its reopening and renewal with a special visitor.
The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu will rededicate the parish church of St Michael in Mytholmroyd at a service to be held at 11am on Sunday 5 November 2017 when he will meet local residents and church members who have worked hard to renew and restore the church which is at the heart of the community.
The church and parish hall were severely damaged during the Boxing Day floods in 2015 when water flooded in, rising to four feet in height.
Eric Alston, Churchwarden of St Michael’s said, “It has been such a long haul to get to this day when we can return to worship in our church building. We have had to replace floors, replaster the walls, renovate the pews and rebuild the organ. The builders have been amazing, Ecclesiastical Insurance have been amazing and the local people have been amazing, rallying round and going above and beyond what might have been hoped for. On behalf of everyone who uses and loves our buildings, thank you! We can’t wait to get everyone together on 5 November to celebrate and are really looking forward to the Archbishop leading the way.”
The Archbishop said, “In 2015 I saw for myself the effects of flooding when I visited York and Tadcaster with so many homes hit by the Boxing Day floods. I am always encouraged by the tremendous spirit, resolve, and generosity that is shown in communities affected by such hazards. I look forward to meeting many people from the community of Mytholmroyd as together we celebrate the rededication of the Parish Church. Fantabulous!”
The flooding has not only affected regular worshippers at the church – the whole community has been touched by it, having to find alternative venues for the different groups that usually meet in the church and hall. Mytholmroyd Cricket Club and later The Good Shepherd Church opened their doors to the displaced congregation allowing Anglican services to take place each Sunday. Since St Michaels church has reopened there have been two weddings and three baptisms, and the Toddler Group ‘Angels’ is also in its usual space each Thursday morning during term time. The newly refurbished rooms are available for hire – see more on the church website.