Sidbury Chapel back on market

SEVEN months after being sold, Sidbury Chapel is back on the market.

SEVEN months after being sold, Sidbury Chapel is back on the market.

Last September Alan and Lesley Cumber, devotees of Sidmouth Folk Week, bought the 1820 Congregational chapel after falling in love with it, and hoped to restore it, leaving most of its features intact.

Now Harrison-Lavers & Potbury's, who originally sold it on behalf of The Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches, have been instructed to find a buyer for the Grade Two listed building after a change in circumstances.

Father of four Mr Cumber, a car dismantler from Harrow, said he was "too busy" to talk, when contacted by the Herald.

Cash offers around �100,000 are being invited for the building, which has listed building consent and planning permission for conversion to residential use with alterations, subject to detailed drawings being submitted.

The chapel, which has not been used for worship since 1999, has no mains drainage or vehicular access.

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The present plans maintain the existing floor space with the sanctuary forming a large open plan living area with ground floor bathroom and an enlarged kitchen.

The substantial balcony becomes a bedroom / work station area with an en suite bath / shower room.

Whoever buys the chapel, last used for worship in 1999, will have to share the building with the remains of former minister, the Reverend William Evans Bishop, who died in 1837 and his wife Mary, who died in 1853, which are buried inside.

Jay Thorne from Harrison-Lavers & Potbury's said: "The sale includes the substantial graveyard but the owner will have to allow the relatives of persons buried to visit the graves.

"In addition we understand that rights have been reserved for five persons to be eventually interred in previously reserved plots.