Vandals cause £1,000s of damage after smashing windows at Shoreham church

An historic stained glass window was one of two smashed by vandals at a Shoreham church last month.

Thursday, 10th December 2020, 10:27 am

Rocks were thrown through a window of St Nicolas’ Church on November 2 and, four weeks later, a large piece of flint destroyed a commemorative Millennium stained glass window.

Reverend James Grant said the mindless acts, which caused thousands of pounds worth of damage, were ‘the last thing we needed’.

“I would say to these people, really think about what you’ve done,” said Rev Grant.

Two windows at St Nicolas' Church in Shoreham have been smashed in November. Pictured are reverend James Grant holding the flint that was used alongside the church warden Sue Bartlett. Pic Steve Robards SR2012092 SUS-200912-113317001

“Was it really worth it? Think about the pain it has brought to quite a lot of people and really think about that before you do something like this again.”

St Nicolas’ millennium window was designed by local artist Sue Wallis, who passed away in 2011.

Rev Grant said that not only was the window a vital piece of the St Nicolas Lane church’s history, it was also a way of preserving Sue’s memory.

The ‘traumatic’ incidents came at a difficult time for the church and its community, he said, after being forced to close for the first lockdown and seeing the vast majority of its calendar wiped clear.

Many older or vulnerable parishioners had been uncomfortable attending at all and risked finding themselves isolated without the sense of community.

Rev Grant said he has been visiting people in their homes and arranging online gatherings and masses, but November’s drama had presented an unwanted distraction.

While he hoped the insurance would cover the bulk of the repairs, the church still needs to raise around £1,800 to complete the job.

The area had been one of the ‘most pleasant and quiet places’ during Rev Grant’s five-year tenure, he said, but he now has to consider installing CCTV around the building.

A fundraising page has been set up for the community to support the repairs, which has already raised over £1,000.

Anything raised beyond what is needed for the repairs will go towards general upkeep of the church, said Rev Grant. Donate here: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/millenniumwindow