Historic city centre church consults about exciting “Regenerate” plans.
A public consultation is to be launched over plans to transform a much loved city centre church.
St Matthew’s Church has stood on Carver Street for over 166 years and has been described as one of the hidden gems of Sheffield.
Over the last two years the parochial church council (PCC) have been developing plans for the redevelopment of the nave.
Fr Naylor, parish priest said: “St Matthew’s has been a key feature of the city centre for generations.
"It has been a church for the poor and outcast, and it is a place of welcome to students and those who are new to the city.
"The building is beautiful and we need to ensure it restored and modified so as preserve the fabric and make it fit for purpose for this and for future generations.
"We have been working with our architect to draw up plans for over two years. We wish to oversee the renewal of St Matthew’s as part of our ‘Regenerate’ plans and we invite all in Sheffield who love our building to be part of it!”
A report on the churches website notes that the physical fabric of the church is in need of some work.
The carpets are unsuitable for the building and cover uneven worn flooring. The seating is inflexible and uncomfortable, the pillars are degrading at the base and need to be looked at.
It adds there is considerable work needed to bring the structure up to scratch and fit for mission.
The Statements of Need and Significance produced by the Buildings Committee and some very early outline plans produced by the architect have been reproduced on the website for the public to comment on.
The Bishop of Sheffield has agreed to be a patron of the campaign alongside, the Bishop of Beverley, the Baroness Harris of Richmond and Dr Catherine Wilcox who is a best selling author and a member of the congregation.
The initial plans can be viewed be viewed on line here: or in person at the church which is open everyday from 10am-1pm. The initial consultation will close on Wednesday 23rd June.
The main aims of the regeneration include increasing the offering to the communities of Sheffield by opening up the building.
The report says: “ Although our church building is primarily for worship, and always will be, we do need to use it for other purposes too e.g. the parish nursing service, lunches for those in need, teaching, concerts/events. The flooring of the church is uneven and poorly covered and disabled access is restricted.
It adds: “The church has underused areas at the back which we want to transform into usable, practical facilities. One would provide a confidential space for people to meet with the parish priest/ or nurses. The other area would provide much needed facilities for hospitality including a small kitchenette and fridges. This would enable us to serve people better following in the great traditions of hospitality built up at St Matthew’s over the generations.
“The church is renowned for the quality its artwork. However a lot of glory has covered up in carpeting and layers of paint including beautiful chancel Arts& Crafts tiles and stencilling. We would like to restore these and thereby improve the overall aesthetic of the church building.”