Rt Rev Dr Alan Wilson

Bishop of Buckingham

1955 – 2024

The news of Alan Wilson’s sudden death after a heart attack shocked and saddened
thousands of people throughout Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes who had known Alan
as priest, pastor, colleague and friend.

The heaviest loss is borne by Alan’s wife, Lucy, their children Catherine, Stephanie,
Stuart, Nick and Anna, and the wider family. We hold them in our thoughts and prayers.

For the Trustees and Friends of Bucks Historic Churches, Alan’s death means the loss not
just of a diligent and competent Vice-President, but a man of boundless energy and constant
thoughtfulness. He understood the challenge facing small congregations struggling to
maintain and restore the fabric of a much-loved but decaying church building, and deployed
his intellect, energy and persuasiveness to help them. It was common, in the margins of a
trustee meeting, for Alan not only to support a grant from BHCT but talk to the
churchwardens or local clergy to explore what other funders they might approach and how
they could frame their case to stand the best chance of a favourable response.

All of us in BHCT are grateful for what Alan did for the Trust throughout his years as Bishop
of Buckingham. We will miss him enormously.

May he rest in peace, and rise in glory.

Rt Rev Dr Alan Wilson, Bishop of Buckingham

Welcome from our Chairman
The Rt Hon Sir David Lidington KCB CBE

Rt Hon Sir David Lidington

 

Buckinghamshire’s churches and chapels have played a central role in the history and community life of the county.

Some parish churches were founded more than 1000 years ago. Others were built to serve growing urban communities in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Buckinghamshire has been a place where new religious ideas and denominations have taken root – something reflected in the chapels and meeting houses found in many of our towns and villages.

The church is usually the oldest building in the community and its design, decoration, monuments and memorials both tell the story of generations of local people through the centuries and represent many of our greatest architectural and artistic treasures.

Despite this, churches and chapels receive no state funding but must instead rely on the generosity of their congregations and others locally. Many struggle. Repair and maintenance of ancient, listed buildings is not cheap.

The Buckinghamshire Historic Churches Trust exists to support local communities to maintain and restore their churches so that they can continue to be enjoyed by future generations. The Trust gives repair and restoration grants to churches and chapels throughout the historic county of Buckinghamshire, including Milton Keynes.

We are supported by the generosity of our donors, including the Friends of Buckinghamshire’s Historic Churches and participants and sponsors of the annual Ride and Stride event. The Trust is a registered charity. We have no employees and are entirely managed and run by volunteers.

Can you help us?

We are looking for volunteers to help organise our largest annual fundraiser – Ride + Stride.

For details please email
ridestride@bucks-historic-churches.org

Help raise funds

Our income comes from a variety of events over the course of each year including our annual Ride + Stride held each September.

We want to encourage more people to take part either as walker or a sponsor so we have set up an easy-to-use JustGiving page.

Join us in our Work

The Friends of Buckinghamshire’s Historic Churches support the work of the BHCT. Each year the Friends organise a number of events including a church crawl and an illustrated talk; Friends also have preferential access to the annual Summer Reception.

Protect our Heritage

We make grants to churches and chapels of all denominations in the county of Buckinghamshire.

Many grants are spent on repairing roofs and stonework, not surprising as many of our beautiful churches were built in the 14th century.

Our Churches

As Buckinghamshire is close to London and crossed by the great roads to Bath, Oxford and Chester the county has always been open to new religious ideas and architectural innovations.

The gradual development of church architecture has been classified into a few periods, beginning with the Norman round arches of the 11th & 12th centuries. Next comes Gothic architecture, using the pointed arch that is sub-divided into three periods: Early English in the 13th century; the brief ‘Decorated’ period of the 14th century and the ‘Perpendicular’ style of the 15th century. There was very little church building in the 16th and 17th century.

In the 19th century the Classical style emerged during the rapid expansion of urban centres like High Wycombe and Aylesbury. The early part of the 20th century is the Gothic Revival period where the ‘Decorated’ style eventually won out over the ‘Perpendicular’ style. The rest of the 20th century allowed architects more freedom and many new styles emerged during that time.

Upcoming Events

Church Crawl

August 14 @ 11:00 am - 4:00 pm

Church Crawl We are visiting 3 churches in Hambleden Valley with a pub lunch. It will be led by the Trustee Mary Saunders MBE who chairs the Trust’s Inspection Committee. We will be starting with coffee at 11:00am in Fingest Church. However participants have the option to join their Communion Service at 10:15 am. We [...]

COUNTDOWN TO OUR NEXT RIDE+STRIDE
Ride + Stride 2024
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