Union Chapel Project exists to care for and develop this unique building and to open it up to as many people as possible.
We believe people from all backgrounds should have the opportunity to enjoy this beautiful space and that it should be available to all for generations to come.
Who we are
We are an independent, secular charity, founded in 1991. The Project is an outstanding example of the way in which you can find new uses for an historic building, without compromising its original function, as a Church.
Union Chapel Project was established a decade after local people saved the building from demolition. The fabric of the Chapel was very fragile and the buildings were rarely used. We were tasked with co-ordinating the vital conservation works and finding the necessary funding. This meant coming up with ways of generating income and once more making the building relevant to the community.
Hiring the Chapel out as a venue for gigs seemed like a natural choice given the Chapel’s wonderful acoustics.
Union Chapel Project now manages the ongoing care and development of the building. It has also become an umbrella organisation that helps co-ordinate a whole host of activities based here. The two main divisions are Union Chapel Directions – a trading subsidiary that runs our award winning venue, Bar & Kiosk and The Margins Project – a charitable subsidiary that provides vital support to people facing homelessness and isolation.
Union Chapel is run by a volunteer board of Trustees.
Registered Charity Number 1010166 | Company Registration Number 0258 3801
What we do
Our charitable work can be divided into two main categories:
Looking after this extraordinary complex of listed buildings keeps us very busy! We co-ordinate major structural repair works and also organise the ongoing maintenance for all the spaces. We rely on assistance from grant funding organisations and generous donations. We also raise money by hiring out spaces for meetings, rehearsals and, of course, concerts. We have an extensive programme of ongoing conservation works and over the past two decades have succeeded in making the internal and external fabric of the building structurally sound.
Opening up Union Chapel
A key part of our remit is to open up this building to as many people as possible, from all walks of life.
- The Margins Project (our charitable subsidiary) works with people who are homeless, isolated and facing crisis.
- Hiring the venue out for a varied programme of gigs and events (via our trading subsidiary) helps us to make sure that thousands of people get to enjoy this space every year.
It is important to us that this building is open to those who can’t afford to pay to come to events here so we organise regular free events.
- Daylight Music – We host around 30 wonderfully eclectic, free, Saturday lunchtime mini gigs a year. Programmed by volunteers from Arctic Circle.
- Guided Tours – A chance to explore Union Chapel from top to toe on the first Sunday of the month – these tours are free but any donations go to The Margins Project.
- The Organ Project – This four year Heritage Lottery Funded project has been opening up our organ to huge range of people since 2011 with an array of free concerts and workshops.