THREE CHURCHES SERVING THEIR COMMUNITY WITH STEELPLAN KITCHENS
March 15, 2020 by wpjX9tncTJIl
A new kitchen can bring a new lease of life to a church. We look at three churches that have boosted their presence in the community with the help of a Steelplan Kitchen.
St Nicholas Thames Ditton
Since investing in their new kitchen, the committee at St Nicholas have been able to bring their congregation together with regular meet-ups and celebrations.
Every Tuesday, the space is used to prepare food for St Nicholas’ Open Lunch, a weekly event attended by members of the Church community, and every Sunday, when the congregation gathers for tea and coffee after Sunday service.
The kitchen has also opened the door to new opportunities for the church, allowing the hall to be hired out for a wide range of events, including two wedding receptions and several birthday parties. The largest event it has supported so far was the Church’s own interregnum to welcome their new Vicar to the parish last year: an occasion attended by over 150 people.
The committee at Stockland Green Methodist Church saw that a recurring feature of the UK’s busiest churches seemed to be a community café. They set out to create a space where the congregation and members of the public could get together outside of Sunday Service, and potentially encourage new members into the church.
In the first five months, the new café – supported by a Steelplan Kitchen – had a footfall of over 4,721 people, and is now regularly packed out with visitors. Feedback locally has been excellent, with visitors dubbing the church café their ‘home from home’.
A very traditional church in desperate need of restoration, Holy Trinity were keen to make improvements and open up to the local community. A £2 million project was launched, to make the church an active, inclusive space that better suited the needs of the local community. A semi-commercial Steelplan Kitchen, sourced through the architect, was incorporated as a long lasting alternative to a fully-commercial stainless steel kitchen.
“We called it our ‘Opening Doors’ project, and the work was really quite extensive”, says Revd Joanna Abecassis. “We wanted the church to better serve our mission, but also enable us to rent the church out more to raise a bit of income. For that, a kitchen was essential.”
Since the kitchen was fitted just before Christmas 2016, the team at the church have been making the most of the new facilities. “We have given it a baptism of fire,” laughs Revd Joanna. “One week after it was fitted, we hosted our Christmas tree festival, then in January we decided to have a traditional Burns Night supper for 90 people. Three courses, including haggis! The food was made off-site and warmed in the unit. It was a huge success.”