New apprentices make great addition to Holy Trinity’s restoration team

Allchurches Trust is supporting two young people in East Sunderland by funding apprenticeships for them to gain knowledge and practical abilities, working with Historic Properties Restoration on the £4.3 million project to repair and restore Holy Trinity Church.

Kane Dennis (Joinery) and Tyler Wallace (General Maintenance), both age 18, have been selected from more than 150 applicants and in October they began 12 months work on site, developing the skills they need to begin a career in heritage restoration and building work.

The Grade I listed church, which dates back to 1719, was closed for regular worship in 1988. The building is on the national ‘Heritage at Risk’ register and it is cared for by the Churches Conservation Trust (CCT), the national charity that protects historic churches at risk.

The repair work consists of urgent and highly skilled fabric repair work, including brickwork and masonry, plastering and joinery. The church will also be equipped sensitively with up to date facilities.

Paul Barrett, the Contracts Director at Historic Properties Restoration said: "We are absolutely delighted to play our part in helping to build Tyler and Kane’s career and they have both slotted straight into their roles on the site of Holy Trinity. We value apprenticeships, as they help to shape and secure our staffing and business succession and are vital to the future of the construction industry. We very much hope that they will both enjoy witnessing the restoration of this important piece of heritage and choose to continue their employment with us after they have completed their apprenticeship."

Seventeen Nineteen – the new name for the Holy Trinity regeneration project - will see the church transformed into a new venue for culture, heritage and learning, where 300 years’ of stories from Sunderland will be brought to life through interpretation, events and performances.

Peter Mojsa, Grants Officer from Allchurches Trust said: "We’re thrilled that our funding will support two local tradespeople with a passion for heritage to learn more of the traditional skills needed for conservation projects such as Holy Trinity, ensuring that these skills can be handed on. The exciting plans for Holy Trinity will bring this magnificent building back to life, provide new cultural opportunities, boost the local economy and help inspire a passion for heritage in the next generation. This is a great opportunity to bring dreams alive! We’re proud to play a part in that and wish Tyler and Kane the very best on their exciting journey."

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