St Mary's, Little Thurrock
The church of St Mary the Virgin is situated in Dock Road, Little Thurrock, a densely populated district adjoining Grays in Essex. The church is a Grade II* listed building, and the oldest part of the nave dates from 1170.
Thompson Bradford Architects were commissioned in January 2010 to prepare a feasibility study for internal alterations at the church. The brief required the provision of WC and refreshment facilities within the church, up-grading of heating and lighting installations, and general repairs and redecoration. During the process of consultation, the project expanded to include repairs to the tower stonework, as well as other internal and external repairs identified in the last quinquennial inspection.
The WC and refreshment facilities have been located in the Victorian extension to the Church, in the part of the nave which is partially screened from the rest of the building by the columns supporting the tower. These elements have “lids” at ceiling level and are conceived of as pieces of furniture tucked into the corner of the building, faced in oak panelling to reinforce this concept.
Re-ordering has involved removing the relatively modern pews, moving the font, and also returning the chancel step to its original position by removing a raised floor installed in 1985.
The contractor Lodge & Sons was appointed in late 2014, and the work was carried out between January and May 2015.