oral history

Retracing the history of the former Christ Church Building in Kensington-Liverpool. its impact on The community

MEET THE PARTICIPANTS BELOW

Cllr Steve Radford at the Launch of the Christian Gold House Ministry Oral History Project

Cllr Steve Radford

Speaks at the Oral History Project Launch event

Rev Samuel Sarpong Christian Gold House Ministry Oral History record

Rev Samuel Sarpong

Lead Pastor Christian Gold House Ministry

Rev Patricia Sarpong Oral History record

Rev Patricia Sarpong

Co-Pastor Christian Gold House Ministry

Gloria Henrietta Otu Oral History Project

Mrs. Gloria Henrietta Otu

Community Member and Contributor  to the  Oral History Project

Cllr Liam Robinson Oral History Project

Cllr Liam Robinson

Shared his views on the Impact of the building on and in the community

Koko Antigha on CGH Ministry Oral History Project

Mr. Koko Antigha

Has seen the various uses of the Church Building from earlier Ministries

Rev Richard Koomson CGH Ministry Oral History Project

Pastor Richard Koomson

Neighbour to the Building & Contributor – Oral History Project

Nigel and Anne Fearn on the CGH Ministry Oral History Project

Nigel & Anne Fearn

Share their family experiences of the Church Building for generations

Mr. Samuel Ata Sarpong

The current Ministry choir leader & Oral History Contributor

Sylvia Kalungi CGH Ministry Oral History Project

Sylvia Kalungi

Projects Lead – Women and Digital Inclusion and Community Member. On the promotion of the building. 

Shamim Kyomya

Shares her experience as a Caterer and how the building can support catering events 

Karen Heverin - Christian Gold House Oral History Project

Karen Heverin

Why Historic England added the Church Building to the “At-Risk” Register and her role in that. 

Brian Jackson - Christian Gold House Oral History Project

Brian Jackson

Used to Subcontract as a French Polisher for Swain Banks when He owned the building for Furniture 1980s.

Dr Karl Fletcher - Architect for repair of former Christ church - Christian Gold House Oral History Project

Dr Karl Fletcher

Shares his view of the Church Building and Its state of repair or Disrepair as the case is at time of publishing. 

James Quainoo - On Tracing Descendants. Christian Gold House Oral History Project

James Quainoo

On tracing descendants of the Colquitt Family on the Christian Gold House Oral History Project.

Rita Mendoza Saleh_CGH Ministry Oral History Project

Mrs. Rita Mendoza Saleh

Shares her view of running a business in Kensington and how the Building was Used as a Furniture Shop by Swain Banks. 

A Brief Introduction

With support from The National Lottery Heritage fund, the current lease owners of the former Christ church building, an outstanding piece of 19th-century architecture, Undertook the task of recording a multimedia history of the building located at the heart of Kensington in Liverpool. First constructed and offered to the Anglican congregation as a worship place in 1870 by a rich widow, the building has been owned and managed by different entities and is now leased to a Pentecostal
African church (Christian Gold House Ministry).

 

The church building was designed by W & G Audsley and its architecture is North Italian Romanesque with polychromatic decoration in red brick. Which has mostly turned to darker brown and black bricks outside due to weather, wear and tear. The walls are still solid.

 

In this Oral History record, we take you on a journey of the different uses of this grade 2 listed building and how it has impacted the communities in the city of Liverpool 

Christian Gold House Ministry

Take a Walk down Memory Lane

Since it was first built in 1870, the church building has played a vital role in the Kensington Community and surrounding areas including hosting christenings, marriages, funerals, barbecues, and other related activities. The goal of the present leaseholders is to expand its community reach. They aim to create a community hub with space for events, children’s creche, a community cafe, a book hub and later they could even start renting office space and refurbishing the building enough to draw tourists again to the building which has an imposing north tower facing the Kensington community library. 

Because of dwindling numbers, the church closed down as an Anglican church in 1975 and was acquired by a local art dealer who managed the building as a storage site. This carried on until the early 2000s. The Gilbert Deya Ministries then acquired the building which it managed from 2002 till 2010 when it closed down.

The building was abandoned for a number of years and squatters occupied the building until 2018 when Ghanaian pastor Rev Samuel Sarpong acquired the lease to the building. It took a court hearing to get the squatters forcefully evicted and the new lease owners would start the huge task of restoration. 

They have opened the building for multiple community usage. There is space for worship, they also run a food bank, a community kitchen and as stated above, they have plans to refurbish the building so it can serve the community wider. The current leaseholders have already spent more than £200,000 to refurbish the building. Yet, conservative estimates by an architect say it still needs just over half a million pounds for further repairs including changing the old leaky roof!

What has all this got to do with an Oral History Record?

If you work or live in Kensington Liverpool This BUILDING is your Community Hub.

As part of the video interviews, the oral history project has recorded the story of a couple Nigel and Anne Fearn who using just www.ancestry.co.uk traced the christening of their six-year-old great grandfather to the church. An event that took place in 1876. That was six years after the church was constructed!

Other interviews have included two local political leaders, a church neighbour, a coordinator of the food bank, and a man who attended the Gilbert Deya ministry church.

This Building has so much History, it oozes from its very core. If you are a history buff, a tourist, or even an Architecture buff this is a MUST VISIT.  Have a cuppa, grab a warm scone, and take some Insta photos, plus some for your records. Come see for yourself for the inside of this building must be seen to be appreciated. They don’t build them like this anymore! It Is Open Every Day. 

The Community Members Stories

Christ Church Impact on the Liverpool Community – TNL Heritage Funded Oral History Project

CGHM Oral history Mid Term

Mrs Patricia Sarpong's Story

Mr Koko Antigha's perspective

Nigel & Anne Fearn Share their experience

Pastor Richard Koomson on The Christ Church Impact

Gloria Henrietta Otu's Story

Cllr Steve Radford on the Christ Church Impact

Rev Samuel Sarpong - Current Lead Church Pastor

Cllr Liam Robinson - On the Building Uses in Community

Samuel Ata Sarpong. Church choir leader

Sylvia Kalungi - WODIN Projects Lead. Promote this Building

Shamim Kyomya of Kimz Cuisine. Modern Use of the Community Hub

Karen Heverin of Heritage England on putting the Building on the Protected List

Brian Jackson a French Polisher when the Building was a Swainbanks 1980s/90s

James Quainoo on tracing descendants of the Colquit Family

Dr Karl Fletcher - Chartered Surveyor examined the 153yrs old building & the adjacent tower

Mrs. Rita Mendoza Saleh - Business Owner & Kensington Community Leader

Rev Samuel Sarpong on YouTube

The Project Volunteers - Oral History Interviewers

Nigel & Anne Fearn with volunteers- Gideo Napson & Esther Adetayo

Vivian, Karen and Marion - Volunteers at the Christian Gold House Community Hub

Gideo Napson a volunteer with Ata Sarpong, a participant

Mrs Adetayo with Pastor Samuel Sarpong_Oral History Project

Mrs. Adetayo - project volunteer with Rev. Sarpong

Volunteers Christian Gold House Ministry Oral History record

Bhumi Pahilajani - project volunteer

Church Volunteer with Mr Antigha CGH Ministry Oral History Project

Abigail Amofah a volunteer with Mr Antigha a participant

Vivian Anan_Volunteer CGH Ministry Oral History Project with Sylvia Kalungi WODIN

Vivian Ananie Volunteer, with Sylvia Kalungi of WODIN a participant

Building Listed and now on The @Risk Register

Historic England, a statutory government adviser on the historic environment listed the building as a Grade 2 building in 1975. These are buildings that are subject to regulation because of their historical and architectural significance and any alterations and building work can only be done with the written permission of the relevant authorities.

Historic England added the church building to the “at-risk register” in November 2022. According to the Lead Pastor of Christian Gold House Ministry Rev Samuel Sarpong, the building was added to the register after a Historic England officer visited and he showed her the disrepair in the building including the roof that was leaking badly.

The church community is presently fundraising to change the roof and carry out other repair works estimated to cost approximately half a million pounds.

Oral History Project Launch-CGH Ministry

In Gratitude to our Funders

Made possible with TNL Heritage Fund