A plan by a York Church to renovate its churchyard as a peaceful community space has won a grant from York City Council's 'Forgotten Corners' fund.

Community volunteers will join specialist contractors in making a paved area beside St Hilda's Church, Tang Hall Lane, York, with seating and raised flower beds where people can relax, meet together, and take time out from busy lives.

  • Pictured: Archbishop of York Dr David Hope leaves St Hilda's after consecrating the new building on the 22nd September 2001.

It will be linked by a new tree-lined, wildlife-friendly and wheelchair-accessible corridor to the existing memorial garden which will be renovated with new planting as a peaceful space where relatives pay their respects to departed loved ones.

The renovation plan will be launched on Sunday 4th November when Hilary Shepherd and Michael Pavolvic, York City Councillors for Hull Road Ward, will plant a tree following 10.30am worship at St Hilda's Church, Tang Hall Lane, commemorating the centenary of the ending of the First World War.

There is no WW1 memorial in the churchyard because the original St Hilda's Church was built in 1933 to serve the new Tang Hall estate, part of whose original brief was to provide 'homes for heroes'; ex-service personnel who had served in the Great War of 1914 to 1918.

The present St Hilda's Church was opened in 2001.

Vicar of St Hilda's the Reverend Fran Wakefield said, "We intend to make the churchyard a peaceful community space for contemplation and for local groups to enjoy.

"Planting a tree for the centenary of the Armistice which will grow and change helps us to look forward to the future - a fitting way of not only marking the anniversary, but also providing a living focus for our community to honour and remember the fallen and maimed service men and women who have lived here in the past, and those who are now our neighbours, friends and relatives."

All service and ex-service men and women in Tang Hall and nearby are invited to this special event.

Fran Wakefield added, "We have chosen the date carefully, as we know that many ex-service people will wish to be involved in other places on Remembrance Sunday itself."

St Hilda's Church, Tang Hall