The annual fundraising event for Suffolk’s church buildings went ahead on Saturday 12 September and now the sponsorship money from hundreds of cyclists, walkers, runners, motorists and church volunteers has largely been counted, the Suffolk Historic Churches Trust are pleased to announce that the total far exceeds last year’s achievement.

So far, with more money still coming in, sponsorship has raised £157,000, exceeding last year’s total of £128,223. The Trust is pleased to announce that the Pedal & Drive Classic Car event raised an additional £14,000.

Usually over 500 churches take part in the fundraising day which is organised by Suffolk Historic Churches Trust. Not surprisingly fewer churches were open to receive the hundreds of participants, but the average raised per participating church was well up. 

Thank you VERY much if you put on your walking boots, pumped up your tyres, polished your fender or sat in the entrance to a church to sign everyone’s sponsor forms. Many churches didn’t feel able to take part this year and we quite understand. For those that did…. THANK YOU!

We are still collecting the sponsorship money and sending cheques to nominated churches, so if you have not yet collected and returned your money, please do so as soon as possible.

If you have any queries, please contact David Gould, the Ride and Stride Treasurer. David’s contact details are:

            email:             davidngould6@gmail.com

            Telephone:    01473 253838

            Address:        7 Karen Close, Ipswich, IP1 4LP

Let’s hope that in 2021 we are back to normal. Please put Saturday, 11 September 2021 in your diary!

Nettie Waters and Christine O’Sullivan at Christchurch, Ipswich

Ride and Stride – for walkers, cyclists and disability buggies https://shct.org.uk/ride-and-stride/

Pedal and Drive for Vintage and Classic cars https://shct.org.uk/pedal-drive-car-rally/

Coronavirus update – January 2021

As previously advised, the administration of the Suffolk Historic Churches Trust will continue to function during the Covid-19 pandemic, and correspondence, emails and telephone calls received at our office in Long Melford will be dealt with as usual.  We are always happy to hear from members and supporters about Trust-related matters.  In particular, we remain open for business for grants applications (details on the Grants tab).  The deadline for applications for the January 2021 grants awards has now passed; the deadline for the April 2021 awards is 29 March 2021.  

In order to accommodate the restrictions imposed by the government in response to the pandemic, the Trust continues to keep its normal programme of events under review.  We will continue to update our members and supporters on developments.

Our latest Newsletter – Autumn 2020 – is available on the website, under the Latest Newsletters tab. 

Gt Waldingfield snowdrops Feb13

Snowdrops at St Lawrence, Great Waldingfield

Churches and Chapels Chat….

We are continuing to circulate our fortnightly e-newsletter to give our members and supporters a spot of cheer and help us keep in touch, while we can’t meet up and hold events.  The Trustees are taking it in turn to create an email with links to their favourite church music, buildings, books etc which we hope you will enjoy.  Any Trust news will be included too. 

If you are a supporter of Suffolk Historic Churches Trust or have become a ‘Friend” please send us your email contact address, if we don’t have it, so you too can receive our ‘Churches and Chapels Chat’. 


The Suffolk Historic Churches Trust was founded in 1973 as a result of the growing awareness of the threat to these ancient and historic buildings.  A combination of rising repair costs, dwindling congregations and hopelessly inadequate parish or community resources meant that many of the churches were facing redundancy and closure.

Led by the inspiration and determination of the 11th Duke of Grafton and supported by the Hon. Jill Ganzoni, Norman Scarfe (one of Suffolk’s most eminent historians), and Alfred Williams of Haughley Park, the Trust was launched in December 1973.

Since then the Trust has raised and distributed over five million pounds to help with the repair and maintenance of these churches.  The Trust is non-denominational and all churches, chapels and meeting houses are eligible to apply for grants.

The Trust derives its income from membership of its Friends organisation, donations, grants and legacies and in particular from the annual sponsored Ride and Stride, held in September each year.

Suffolk’s Churches

The landscape of Suffolk would look very different without the 500 medieval churches the county can be so proud of.  Then there is the role of non-conformist chapels and meeting houses in our history.  Even non-worshipping members of communities appreciate that it is worth the time and money involved in preserving churches and chapels for future generations.  (For more details of why Suffolk’s religious buildings are important to the local economy, click here)

Eye, St. Peter & St. Paul.jpg