Church search for new home due to growing flock

A north Northumberland church is looking to move into a new home to cope with an expanding congregation.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has submitted a planning application to Northumberland County Council for a change of use from business to place of worship for a unit at Cawledge Business Park.

And the president of the Alnwick branch, Bishop Paul West, explained that it’s a case of keeping up with the growth of the church.

“As it grows in size numerically, it reduces the size of its congregations geographically,” he said.

The Alnwick branch, which covers Amble, Rothbury and all the way up to Berwick, used to be part of Ashington and before that it was all part of a congregation at North Shields.

North Shields has a purpose-built chapel and as it grew, Northumberland was separated off to Ashington and as that congregation grew it was split again to form the Alnwick branch, covering north Northumberland.

Currently the church rents the Lindisfarne Centre on Sunday and during the week it rents the Mechanics Institute for youth activities and business meetings.

Bishop West said: “We would like something a little more permanent so we can use it on other days than are currently available to us.

“What we are looking for is something we can use during the week.

“It would be permanent in the short-term and as the church grows, our intention is to have a purpose-built chapel somewhere in north Northumberland.

“Looking into the future, I would see a point where the area is split again because north Northumberland is a big area geographically, and we would have somewhere further north.

“We are grateful to have the facilities we have currently, but there are other things we would like to be able to do during the week.”