Redundant church up for sale in North Chailey

HOLY smoke - potential homes don’t come much more unusual than this.

A redundant church is up for sale and a planning application has been submitted for conversion to residential use.

Offers in excess of £200,000 are being invited by St Mary the Virgin Church, at North Chailey, which is on the market on the instructions of the Diocese of Chichester and the Church Commissioners.

The Grade II listed building was designed by the architect John Oldrid Scott and built in 1876 with external walls faced in sandstone under a clay tiled roof.

It was formally closed for public worship in 1996.

Attractive architectural features include an exposed vaulted timber roof, stained glass windows surrounded by gothic stone arches, a low tower complete with bells and an ornamental cross.

The gross internal floor area is approximately 1,800 sq ft, with the main sections being the nave, crossing, chancel and south aisle.

Some potential buyers may be put off by the fact that the building is surrounded by graves on three sides - and the churchyard is still open for occasional burials.

However, a limited area of land immediately adjacent to the church and to the west where no interments exist will be available as amenity land for use with the building. This will include the lych gate on the frontage with the A272.

Plans for its conversion to a single residential unit of three/four bedrooms, have been lodged by the Church Commissioners with Lewes District Council, together with a listed building application.

The Newick office of estate agents Torbridge (01825 724222) is handling the sale and offers must be received in writing by June 9.