€4.5 million to renovate historical churches and parsonages


Several churches and related building in Flanders will be getting much-needed repair work after new government subsidies were approved totalling €4.5 million

Structural damage

The government of Flanders has approved subsidies for five heritage restoration projects – four of them in Flemish Brabant – totalling more than €4.5 million.

The largest sum of €1.5 million goes to Sint-Pieter church in Gooik, Flemish Brabant, described as “a remarkably good example of a classicist country church”. The building is part of the protected centre of the old village of Leerbeek, and the church’s organ is also protected heritage. The church (pictured) has been closed since December because of unsafe conditions. The subsidy will pay for much-needed repair work to both the interior and exterior.

A subsidy of €978,000 goes to restoration of the parsonage of the Church of Our Lady in Tielt-Winge. The building dates from the 18th century and has been a protected monument since 1974. It is suffering from water infiltration through the roof and gutters at the entrance and in the coach-house, leading to stability problems. The house continues to be occupied.

The Sint-Germanus church in Tienen, with origins going back to the 14th century, receives €921,000. The church, which dominates the surrounding area because of its elevation, is an excellent example of the medieval Romanesque style.

Two parsonages in Kampenhout – one from the 18th century and one slightly older – share a grant of €576,000. Both stand on the same piece of land. The older building will house a meeting room, a studio for the priest and washroom facilities. The larger one will be used by the local municipality for meetings, offices and weddings.

Finally, the Sint-Mildreda church in Alveringem, West Flanders, is receiving €511,000 for work to facades, its roof and its stained-glass windows. The church, originally built in the Roman style, had its original steeple restored in the mid-20th century using original materials.

Photo courtesy Het Nieuwsblad