Tuesday, 7 April 2009


Last night was a consultation evening at St James Church.
I went with an open mind even being very dismayed about the plan to exhume 3000 bodies and build a block of flats on the cemetery.
All the usual suspects were there Louise Obrien from EH, Andrew Pearce from the MCS, Graham Ives from English Heretics. I could swear that during his speech he and the panel sprouted little red horns and barbed tails, it may have just been the light. Here we have a clear example of English Heretics being so out of touch that it is doing more damage than good.
So too are the Churches Conservation Trust whose representative Peter Aires was left in no uncertain terms as to the ill feeling regarding the plans to turn the Church into a piece of property development.
Louise Ellman MP who has watched the church deteriate and living closeby, for the last 10 years did make an appearance but said nothing.
The vicar Revd Neil Short is one of those fluffy characters just the type to organise a wine and cheese evening and a tambourine jamboree. He said he was from Burnley and had been the vicar in Burscough and responsible for the churches restoration there.
Philip Stott the business advisor spoke, he wouldn’t be my choice of accountant. He said it is going to cost 2 million to restore the church and a million to exhume the 3000 bodies and then they are going to lease back the land and church from a developer….its absurd.
There are 7000 bodies buried there in total.
You know when serving my apprenticeship there was an old saying don’t build on sand, it is clear you don’t want to build foundations on decaying skulls and ribcages of dead people either.
This is like an Amityville Horror in the making.
Who wants a flat on an old graveyard?
A well spoken lady from Toxteth town hall asked the same question why not go back to the drawing board it is a bad idea.
A man at the back suggested why not take the road over at the end, the council own it…that is a good idea. If Trevor Jones can do it with public roads why can't the church.
A bloke called Ricky Panter who introduced himself as the Arch Deacon tried to argue the case but I had none of it.
English Heretics leave the dead alone and we the LPT will support the job to get it back into service….but if the Church carry on with the idea for grant aided exhumation and the ruination of the setting of a Grade II* listed building and we will fight them all the way.
I walked out through the graveyard and I swear I could feel the dead turning in their graves below my feet.
Wayne Colquhoun

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