A historic church in the heart of London has become the first Grade I listed place of worship in the city to go fully carbon neutral.
After undergoing an extensive renovation project worth £1.1million, St Andrew-by-the-Wardrobe has installed six air source heat pumps, new roof insulation, specialist energy-efficient LED lighting, an equal and access ramp in a bid to become more environmentally friendly.
The refurb also saw the complete renovation of the toilets, kitchen and parish room.
Rector of St Andrew-by-the-Wardrobe and Archdeacon of London, the Ven. Luke Miller, said: “. It’s been a true privilege to oversee the third regeneration of an irreplaceable part of the City’s rich tapestry, and I am so excited to see worshipers welcomed through St Andrew’s doors once more.”
St Andrew’s will also become the London headquarters for the Coptic Orthodox Church and the Coptic Orthodox Archbishop of London as part of a church-sharing arrangement.
Coptic Orthodox Archbishop of London, Archbishop Angaelos, said: “When we first embarked on this partnership, it was never expected to reach the scale which it has. Having the two-thousand-year-old Church of Egypt now finding a home in a thousand year old iconic church in the heart of London speaks of the breadth of the Church in our current era.
“Our vision is that this not only becomes a place of worship for the Coptic Orthodox Community, but a space through which it serves London in all its breadth and diversity.”
A celebratory choral evensong to mark its reopening was held on Wednesday 26th July, attended by the Bishop of Fulham, Jonathan Baker, the Bishop of London, Dame Sarah Mullally, and the Coptic Orthodox Archbishop of London, Archbishop Angaelos. The City of London’s Livery Companies, local businesses and residents were also in attendance.
Bishop of London, Rt Rev Dame Sarah Mullally, added: “It is wonderful to see St Andrew-by-the-Wardrobe reopened, and I would like to pay tribute to the tireless dedication of all involved in the restoration of the building, including Archdeacon Luke and project manager Bob Wilson.
“As stewards of God’s creation, we have a fundamental responsibility to act sustainably and protect the world we live in. I am thrilled that St Andrew’s is leading the way in showing us an example by which we should all strive to follow.”