New signage highlighting the regeneration plans for the former Burtons building has been installed on the store’s windows.
Called Hope Street, the project will see the establishment of a community, centred on outreach to younger people.
It will be based at the former Burtons building ‘which will be transformed into a Christian centre and worship space’.
Earlier this year the Diocese of St Asaph confirmed it had purchased the building and unveiled plans to use the three storey building for a new kind of Christian Community, aimed at young people and families.
It is also expected that Hope Street will be a base for community programmes in Wrexham, such as holiday hunger schemes, family care and support for rough sleepers.
The signage states that behind the doors, work is underway on the long-standing vacant property, with the Diocese confirming earlier this year that the refurb will include a new worship space, offices, meeting rooms; a kitchen and hospitality areas and a base for social and community engagement.
In June 2019 Wrexham.com reported that the Diocese of St Asaph had secured £1.9m from a major new fund aimed at reviving Christian ministry in Wales.
Hope Street is the first project to bid successfully for funding from the Church in Wales’ Evangelism Fund. The £10m Fund was launched last year for schemes to engage people with the Christian faith.
The grant made by the Church in Wales will allow the establishment of a leadership team and core community, as well as changes to equip the building. The project will be run in partnership with existing churches and the Church Revitalisation Trust (CRT) which specialises in church growth.
Regeneration works are set to continue until 2020 when Hope Street will be opened.
The 6,627 square foot three floor building was recently listed for sale for £135,000 and was moved to under offer earlier this year.
In February we highlighted a mention of the Burtons building in the 45 page appendix to a forthcoming council meeting, that noted: “The town centre experiences high vacancy and turnover and consistent under-occupation of upper floors. Many upper floors remain vacant resulting in a lack of maintenance and deterioration of the structural fabric, which degrades the overall appearance of the street-scene.
“The former Burtons at the junction of Hope Street and High Street is particularly detrimental in key views to and from the Church.
“The current condition with boarded up windows is visually poor and interim measures could be taken to improve this situation.”
In 2014 we went inside the building, and took the following set of images from the top floor where the former ballroom and bingo hall was sited.
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