London welcomes first purpose-built Anglican church in 40 years
The first new purpose-built Anglican church to open in London for 40 years has been unveiled during a ceremony attended by local residents and the Bishop of Edmonton.
The official launch of St Francis at the Engine Room on the new Hale Village housing development in Tottenham Hale was also attended by local MP David Lammy.
Priest Missioner at the church, Fr Andrew Williams said: "After four years working from our temporary space it is wonderful to move into our permanent home, a community centre and church from which to base our work in the wider community of Tottenham Hale."
The congregation, which has grown to 500 weekly attendees since the church was founded in 2013, had been meeting at the old Engine Room community centre in Hale Village.
Rt Revd Rob Wickham, the Bishop of Edmonton said: "I am delighted to see that God's vision for Tottenham has a new face, a fact made possible by years of hard work from the parishioners of St Francis at the Engine Room, London City Mission and a host of partners.
"St Francis is a shining example of God's desire for all Londoners to flourish, and one that will inspire many imitators as we continue to love and serve through worship, prayer, listening and play, energised by the good news of Jesus Christ."
St Francis forms part of the Diocese of London's strategy to create 100 new churches in 2020 and is one example of how church leaders are keen to explore opportunities to create churches alongside new housing developments.
Martina Kwapong, Church Community Worker at St Francis at the Engine Room, said: "St Francis at the Engine Room has become a busy place for making friends and exploring each other's cultures and faith.
"A vibrant community is growing together here, and we are making a unique contribution to life in Tottenham."
At its new home, St Francis will be able to offer a 36-place nursery and a café.