The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that in 782, there was ‘a synod at Acleah’, which is presumed to be Aycliffe, Acleah being one of its earlier names. Undoubtedly therefore there has been a Christian building or purpose in this village for over 1300 years.

When they originally constructed St Andrew’s our forefathers were more concerned with building a house in which to worship and glorify our Lord, than to cater for its visitors and mere mortals.

It could be said also that in 1882, when the last major restoration took place, our Victorian forebears missed a trick also, for those of you who have attended this wonderful old church, will have noticed, or maybe were even inconvenienced, by its lack of facilities.

St Andrew’s does not have a toilet, or a place to wash your hands. Nor does it have the facility to provide you with a cup of good cheer! It is proposed to remedy that at last.

Discussions have taken place amongst the DCC and with an architect following the last Quinquennial report, and some designs have been considered. The proposal is to provide toilet facilities adjacent to the church, but as an integral part of the building. In addition, a place to make a hot brew.

To capitalise on our heritage and the wonderful Saxon crosses and carvings, we would also like to create a viewing and study area at the back of the church, perhaps under the tower, but including the rear sections of the North and South aisles.

This as a big project, and before we charge on in to it we would like you, the parishioners, and the people St. Andrew’s serves to consider its value, and perhaps make suggestions, as to what exactly you would like us to achieve.

Please contact us with any questions via our website:

David Blair

Parish of Great Aycliffe