A former dentist's surgery in Wales has been given a new lease of life as a church has moved in.
The building on Porthmadog's High Street, once associated with dental check-ups and toothaches, will now serve as a place of Christian worship and a hub for community-based initiatives to tackle loneliness for New St John’s Church, Porthmadog.
The original St John's Church, which was constructed between 1873 and 1876, was perched atop a hill overlooking the town. The architect remains unknown to this day, but it is expected that the initial plan was to build the church closer to the town centre. However, due to structural issues and accessibility concerns, it closed its doors in 2023.
The move aligns with the original intention of being closer to the people they serve.
Most Rev Andrew John, Archbishop of Wales attended the Sunday service to bless the new building.
He voiced his excitement over the thriving Christian community being situated right on High Street and looked forward to seeing how New St John’s would welcome people. He said he is “delighted to see a thriving Christian community gathered together right on the high street”.
“In addition to worship each Sunday, all kinds of new things will be happening here.” He added. “New St John’s will become a space to welcome people in a new way.”
Echoing Archbishop Andrew's sentiments, Rev Kim Williams, Bro Eifionydd Ministry Area Leaders said: “At New St John’s, we are right in the heart of the community. Our motto is Faith in Action and our words and actions back this up.”
They plan to put this faith into action by hosting social events and outreach projects during the week. These initiatives include a midweek open afternoon event serving tea, cakes, and biscuits for locals to enjoy a chat. Plans for a uniform swap shop and even a mother and toddler group are also in the works.