First Church of Christ Scientist

The Edgar Wood Society assists the conservation of Edgar Wood buildings wherever it can and, over the years, has met many owners. This is the wonderful First Church, Manchester, which is to have a new use for events and weddings. The photo shows the owner, Mr. Danny Samuels (centre), Bill Wingrove and P.R. expert Becky Roberts with the famous organ screen in the background.

More Scaffold

The hall and school rooms are now fully encased in scaffold. All render has been removed and the Ladies Parlour bay brickwork has been taken down, prior to being rebuilt. Two internal walls are scheduled to be taken out this week. Watch this space!

External Work Gets Started

The lecture room rear gable from the street

You can now see things are happening on the outside. This gives a real sense that the restoration is on the move. Internal work has been put on hold as more asbestos has been uncovered and notification is required to  give a 14 day HSE notification period prior to any further removal.

Restoration Update

Inside work is halted for the time being, unfortunately more locations of potential asbestos have been found under floors. Until this is or is not confirmed by lab reports, it is a no go area. As a result Stuart is braving the cold investigating the condition of the stonework – can it be resurfaced or must the block be cut out and replaced?

Restoration Week One

One week on and the kitchen has been stripped out, the next job in the area will be the removal of the a dividing wall to make a larger and more useful room, access is limited while asbestos is removed from various locations. The broom cupboard under the stairs and the band storage cupboard on the landing have also gone opening up these areas and what a difference. Shrubs and plants down the community wing have been dug out to allow for render to be removed and then scaffold  erected for high level work. Continue reading “Restoration Week One”

Contractors and Volunteers Get Started

Stone Edge contractors have started removing the cement render that  replaced the lime render in the 1970s. Cement stops the bricks ‘breathing’ and results in damp. At the same time the EW volunteers are removing the shrubs so scaffolding can be positioned for the high level work.  Hidden damage to the stonework is revealed, caused again by the use of cement. The damaged stonework can be seen in the middle right of the centre picture and the lower image shows the extent of the damage. The new render will be lime based as used originally by Edgar Wood. Continue reading “Contractors and Volunteers Get Started”

Restoration of the School Rooms is Underway

Lisa of Seven Architects who is heading up the restoration was on site this morning together with Stuart the site manager of the contractors, Stone Edge. The ‘demolition’ of the old kitchen has been started  prior to an adjoining wall being removed later this week. This room will become a community meeting room. The units that are in a good condition will be reused in two community areas, with the addition of new work surfaces. Watch this space for regular updates. Continue reading “Restoration of the School Rooms is Underway”

The Contractors Move In

Stuart the site manager for the contractors (Stone Edge) was welcomed at 7.30am this morning to start the run in for what will be a tight restoration schedule. At the same time there is a lot of preparation needed by the Greater Manchester Building Preservation Trust and the Edgar Wood Society, especially removing items to a safe storage area and journeys to the waste disposal site. Continue reading “The Contractors Move In”

Restoration is ‘Go’ for the School Rooms at Long St. Methodist Church

Following delay after delay, the contract for the restoration of the school rooms has been signed and the contractors, Stone Edge will move in on Monday. All was confirmed at the meeting this morning. The photograph below shows Lisa of Seven Architects on the left , followed by Sue the Conservation officer managing the THI and Keith, Mark and Stuart from Stone Edge. Also in attendance were representatives of the Greater Manchester Building Preservation Trust.

A press release appeared in today’s publication of the Middleton Guardian stating that “The Long Street Methodist School is Grade 11*, which means it’s in the top 5% of important historic buildings in the country”. Also when completed in 1900 by the famous Middleton born  architect Edgar Wood, “The design was ground-breaking at the time because it featured the Arts and Crafts style that EW was famous for, but also showcases the beginning of the Art Nouveau influence before this architectural style became widely popular.”

An Evening Visit by the Middleton Rotarians

The first evening tour in the dark (only outside) took place this evening. Our visitors were the Middleton Rotary and their President, Janice Powell is on the left of tour guide Christine. A general overview was given in the Church, followed by a virtual tour of EW’s buildings in Middleton by the way of a Power Point presentation. Several members had previous ties with the building, one brought his daughter to the Brownies in the early 1980s and another met his wife here in ___ ? a long time ago.

If you would like more information about the Rotary, their web site is