WHY THE NEED FOR CHANGES TO THE SITE?
The College is in a unique position to enable the development of the church’s ministry – through new patterns of ordination training, programmes for senior leaders in the Church of England, retreats and conferences. But to do so its facilities need to be significantly improved.
The College is based in a set of impressive historic buildings but with increasing numbers of students they are working at full capacity. Due to lack of space, not all residential students have their own study area on site and on regular occasions a significant proportion of non-residential students have to go off-site for their studies. A further consequence of the historic nature of the College is that the current chapel is located on the first floor making it inaccessible to the disabled, and it seats about 50 people, meaning that there is not the space for the community to be able to worship together.
To meet the needs of all our students, residential and non-residential, we need to extend the living, worship and study space on our current site. This development will help us maintain the unique community that is fundamental to the formation of ordinands and will enable us to continue to play a key role as a major provider of theological education into the future.
Harriet Monsell House
The new Education Centre will contain a state-of-the-art lecture theatre that can either hold up to 100 people theatre-style or can be sub-divided into two smaller teaching spaces. As well as providing 21st century facilities for our own students, it will provide a conducive space for dialogue, house the new courses, projects and events arising from the success of our Research Centre, and enable the provision of better and deeper training for clergy at all levels.
The Centre will also contain much needed additional accommodation with some new en-suite study/bedrooms as well as a new convent on the top two floors to house the Sisters of Begbroke. The building is to be dedicated to the memory of Harriet Monsell who founded the Community of Saint John Baptist in 1852 dedicating her life to work with former prostitutes, single mothers, as well as founding orphanages and hospitals.
Edward King Chapel
A unique oval stone exterior will house a stunning chapel interior which will seat up to 90 people accessible to all, and will be at the heart of the community to provide a spiritual home for generations of students.
This will be dedicated to Bishop Edward King, former Principal of the College and later Bishop of Lincoln.
BUILDING PROGRESS TO OCTOBER 2011
A building contractor, Beard (Oxford) Ltd, was appointed in June 2011 and work began on site in July. We have been fortunate with a dry summer and terrific progress has been made. To date we are on time and on budget, with completion of both buildings due in September 2012. The substructure work is complete and as we start work on the buildings coming up out of the ground, we will mark the occasion with the blessing of two foundation stones. These have been carved with the Cuddesdon crosses and the Lamb and Flag to represent the coming together of the College and the Sisters of Begbroke. They will be incorporated into the two new buildings when we reach that part of construction.
Cuddesdon has a tradition of foundation stones when new building takes place. There is one sited near the arch when the Rashdall wing was built in 1904, one high up on the wall facing the road on the exterior of the existing chapel built in 1874, and again on the eaves of the Runcie building erected in 1990.
For any enquiries or to subscribe to future Buildings Bulletins, please email Sophie Farrant, Development Director, at email@example.com or tel: 01865 877422.