The generosity of an
award-winning North Yorkshire brickmaker has helped a little village church
rebuild its historic wall after it was demolished by a reckless driver.
The York Handmade Brick
Company, one of the largest independent brickmakers in the country, donated the
bricks free of charge to St John’s Church in Minskip, near Boroughbridge.
This gift has enabled the
church wall to be completely rebuilt and, accordingly to church warden Robert
Beaumont, it looks exactly as it did before the accident.
He commented: “We were
absolutely devastated when we saw the extensive damage the out-of-control car
had done to our wall. It was heart-breaking. As a small church, we were
struggling to find the funds to restore the wall to its former glory, so this
gift from York Handmade has made all the difference.
“The reckless driver and
his passengers left the scene as soon as they could, taking their smashed-up
car with them, but they left their registration plate embedded in the wall.
They were subsequently traced by the police, but no-one admitted to being the
driver, meaning a conviction would be hard to achieve.
“This left the church
council feeling very angry indeed and we are currently pursuing compensation.
But the generosity of York Handmade has improved our mood, underlining the fact
that kind acts often follow selfish and destructive ones.
“We are now very honoured
to have special bricks in our church wall from a company which has been
involved in award-winning projects across the UK, including the Shard, Highgate
School and London Bridge Station in London, St Albans Cathedral, Magdalene
College, Cambridge, York Art Gallery, York Racecourse and Halifax Library.
David Armitage, chairman
of York Handmade Brick, which is based in Alne, near Easingwold, commented: “We
are absolutely delighted to help St John’s Church. As luck would have it, we
had some bricks which almost exactly matched the 19th century church
wall. Looking at the wall now, I think it’s impossible to tell where our bricks
begin and end.
“We pride ourselves in
helping the local North Yorkshire community when we can and this was a project
which suited us perfectly. St John’s is a lovely little church, and an
important part of village life, and we know how upset villagers were when the
wall was wrecked. We are so happy to have played our part in its restoration.”
Pic shows: Churchwarden at St John’s, Minskip,
Robert Beaumont, right, with David Armitage of York Handmade by the lovingly
restored church wall.