A CHURCH group could be left without a place to worship if the Church of England presses ahead with plans to demolish the building and sell the land.

The Church Commissioners has launched a consultation on its plan to demolish the closed church of Saint Barnabas, in Hereford, and sell the site.

If the plan goes ahead after consultation, the Hereford Diocesan Board of Finance will sell the site so it can be redeveloped as a care home.

But the move would leave the Oasis Church, contemporary church with Baptist roots, without a place to worship.


The group meets at least weekly at St Barnabas and it welcomes two other local fellowships separately on a regular basis to have their own meetings there.

"It has never been closed for worship since it was deconsecrated by the Anglicans," a spokesperson said, adding Oasis tried to buy the church but couldn't match the care home bidder.

"We have held the lease for a number of years and for a number of years we were encouraged to sublet part of the building to the local charity Vennture.

"It is still already used by a number of other local community groups, and should Oasis Church have been the preferred bidders in this process they would greatly extend this facility.

"It is only the uncertainty of the building’s future that has stopped this happening already.

"St Barnabas has proved to be a great meeting place for people from across the city and beyond. It is also in an area where there is very little by way of community facilities."

Hereford Times:

Since 2008, the church, off Venns Lane, had been used for community purposes and for occasional worship, with the upper portion being leased to a local charity.

But the bid said the continued use was not felt to be sustainable, particularly as it was in need of investment to address several issues.

It said the church, built in the 1980s, was no longer needed by the parish of St Peter, which has three other church buildings, and it was declared closed for regular public worship in 2019.

The chosen developer currently proposes to provide a care and nursing home on the site, subject to permission from Herefordshire Council.

Consultation is open via the Church of England website until March 20.