AN APPEAL to raise funds for extensive and urgent repairs to St John the Baptist Cathedral, Norwich, is being launched today by Bishop Alan Clark of East Anglia,
Nearly £650,000 will be needed for the complete restoration, but the initial appeal is for L350,000 to complete work on the north transept, chancel, south transept, rectory and sacristy.
In a letter to be read in all parishes of the diocese this Sunday, Bishop Clark asks: "Is this the right thing to do — to ask for a considerable sum of money, a massive sum, for the restoration of a building?"
B ishop Clark stresses, however, that the Cathedral is not any ordinary sort of building. "It was built to the glory of God nearly a hundred years ago, and if it is within our powers to restore it we must do so. The alternative is too sad even to think of."
Parishes in the diocese have already set themselves a target of collecting 00,000 a year. Of 160,900 which has already been raised the cathedral parish of St John's has contributed 122,590.
The cathedral suffered blast damage during the last war, and leadwork on the building needs urgent attention. There is eventually the possibility of falling masonry in the worst affected parts of the building.
Cardinal Hume, Bishop Maurice Wood, Anglican Bishop of Norwich, and the Lord Mayor of Norwich are among the patrons of the appeal.