A small group of local people came together in the summer of 2015 and decided to do something about the church. We recognised this building as a vital piece of our local history and heritage but also that it was in urgent need of major repair. We decided that we would do all we could to preserve and protect this very special church for generations to come.
So a committee was formed and, over the course of the next year, a Charitable Incorporated Organisation was set up called ‘The Friends of the Church of St Hubert, Idsworth Trust’. This is a Trust regulated by the Charity Commission and dated 1st August, 2016. Registered Charity No. 1168533.
The Trust is run by a Board of Trustees who are also members of the Trust. The Friends are designated as Associate Members of the Trust. The Trust is wholly independent of the Parochial Church Council (PCC) and the wider church administration. The Trust is authorised by the PCC to raise funds for the maintenance and preservation of the church building and its fabric. This does not include church activities or events. The Trust will achieve its objectives by making donations to the PCC for specific repairs, maintenance and conservation projects.
The aim is to encourage as many people as possible to become Friends of the Church and so generate sufficient funds to pay for the necessary repairs.
We are delighted with the early progress. The plight of the church seems to be striking a chord with many: people have stepped forward to join the Committee, become Trustees of the charity and offer practical help. Momentum is building!
We hope that you, too, will join us as a Friend and encourage others to do so as well.
Message from the Chairman
Over a very long life, the church of St. Hubert has faced many challenges.
For forty generations it has been a refuge and silent witness to the events which have marked the lives of all who have lived and worked in the Idsworth valley: plague, famine and neglect have not been strangers here. The church has been a constant source of inspiration, of comfort and solace as well as a testament to the lives of those who have gone before. It has been rebuilt, extended, refurbished and repaired many, many times. Recently a much needed major refurbishment has been curtailed for lack of funds.
Against this background, we have established The Idsworth Church Friends Trust to give everyone, not just the regular St. Hubert’s church-goers, a way to contribute to its up-keep and to have a say in its future. We hope you share our interest.
Our web pages here will help inform all the friends on the condition and needs of the building, progress with its preservation as well as the history and life of the valley. We hope you will enjoy them and become a regular visitor.
Together, we can preserve this unique monument and meeting place for future generations. Through the generosity of the congregation, many visitors and Friends, we have already made a significant start to the conservation work to safeguard the building: the South and West walls have been lime-washed, the East window frame has been replaced and the outer East wall re-rendered and lime-washed (2019); the East window wall paintings conserved (2021); A Shared Identity Project with South Downs National Park completed (2021). Much more work still needs to be done: 2023 will see the start of a four-phase programme of repair and conservation taking us though to 2027.
Andrew Callender (Chairman/Secretary)
Tracy Eggleston (Treasurer)
You can contact us through the Friends’ email: