In June 2019 St Mary’s Parish Church, Barnard Castle and DigVentures was awarded a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £320,500 for their £400,000 Windows to the World partnership project. Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, the project focussed on urgent repairs and conservation to the historic church building, as well as an exciting heritage interpretation project.
The church has important links with Richard lll and the project received financial support from The Richard lll Society. The Friends of St Mary’s also provided grant support to the project. Government grants enabled the cost of some of the VAT to be met.
In 2020, essential conservation work was carried out to the walls, tower and stained glass windows of the 900 year old parish church. Works included:
During 2021, the church’s partners in the project, Barnard Castle based archaeologists DigVentures, ran a project to involve the wider community in the heritage of the church building and its place in local history, engaging the wider community in other aspects of the intertwined history of the town and the church.
The grant followed on from a previous award of £17,100 in 2018, which enabled the church and DigVentures to develop detailed plans for this joint project.