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Ride+Stride 2020 is ON!

by Michael Ford last modified 20 Jul, 2020 10:10 AM

Dorset Historic Churches Trust (DHCT) is delighted to announce plans to go ahead with Ride+Stride 2020 on September 12th.

Ride+Stride 2020 is ON!

John Floyd and Oscar pictured at Kington Magna last year. They visited 10 churches and raised over £200.

As churches re-open after months of lockdown, the Trustees believe it is time to support church buildings, and continue their effort to maintain Dorset’s cherished history and heritage.

Ride+Stride is an outdoor event for individuals or families to be sponsored to walk, cycle or horse ride, between churches. It will carry on within the limits of whatever social distancing requirements are in force at that time.

While 50% of the cash raised is allocated for restoration grants for churches of all denominations across the county, the other 50% is returned to individual churches nominated by the riders or striders for their own uses. At a time when church income has been severely reduced, the Trustees were keen that Ride+Stride 2020 should not be added to the long list of events cancelled this year.

Chairman John Stokoe commented:

“We have thought long and hard about whether Ride+Stride 2020 should go ahead, and how it could be done. We believe that, with some modifications, we can proceed this year, while keeping the safety of all involved at the forefront of our thinking.

“The need to go ahead this year is strong. Other sources of income for many parishes have largely dried up during lock-down, while the cost of repair and restoration of church buildings after a very wet winter has not reduced.”

For the past 60 years, DHCT has grant-aided maintenance work for churches and chapels of all Christian denominations in Dorset, prioritising weatherproofing of roofs and stonework. In recent years, significant funds have been granted to assist communities to adapt their cherished church buildings for wider use.

DHCT’s principal source of funds is the annual sponsored Ride+Stride for Churches around Dorset’s over 300 churches and chapels. In 2019, nearly 175 parishes took part, raising more than £84,000. R+S 2020 will take place on Saturday 12 September.

DHCT's annual income from Ride+Stride has averaged £80,000 a year for the last 5 years. By drawing down some of its reserves, it has been able to make grants totalling over £110,000 a year in the same period to churches all over the county.

To find out how get involved, go or look for the poster on your church noticeboard in early August.

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