Save St James the Less Church School Building for the Community

Save St James the Less Church School Building for the Community

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St James the Less Community started this petition to London Diocesan Board of Schools

St James the Less Church is a thriving church deeply rooted in its community in Pimlico, London SW1. On its site is a disused, grade 1-listed building which housed the former school.

The Church would like to buy this old school building from the London Diocesan Board of Schools - which owns it - and turn it into an Education Centre, providing much-needed help and support for deprived families and young people in the community.

The LDBS have told the Church that if it doesn't raise £750,000 to buy the building by early February, then it will go for sale on the open market.

We are urging the London Diocesan Board of Schools to keep the old school building as an educational centre for local people in need, rather than selling it to a private buyer/developer.

We also urge the LDBS to give the Church adequate time to raise the funds required to buy it.

An Educational Centre helping the young and vulnerable is badly needed by our local community. While there is wealth in Pimlico, there is also a lot of deprivation and need. The Church and its youth charity the Pimlico Foundation sees a lot of mental health needs and a significant numbers of families struggling; and there is the rising problem with drugs and gangs.

This new Centre would aim to address these problems at their root, rather than constantly addressing the symptoms. The Church's plans for it include partnerships with many charities who do great work helping and supporting young people in our local community - especially the most vulnerable and marginalised.

If we can change the lives and prospects of our young people, then we will help transform the future of Pimlico and its people.

We call on the LDBS to help provide education, support and services for young people and local families in need by keeping this building as a centre for education - as was its original intention.  As it says in the original grant of the school site, dated 1864: "Upon trust the said premises and all buildings thereon erected or to be erected for ever hereafter appropriated and used as and for a School for the education of Children and Adults only of the labouring manufacturing and other poorer classes in the said Ecclesiastical District of St James the Less".

We urge the LDBS to keep the St James the Less school building as an educational centre for those most in need in the local Pimlico community – rather than putting it for sale on the open market. We also ask them to ensure that the Church has the right and ability to buy the building at a fair price, and the necessary time to enable this.

You can also help us to save the building as an Educational Centre by donating towards our fundraiser. Thank you for your support.

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