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Ilford church rises from the rubble to hold official opening ceremony

PUBLISHED: 09:00 29 July 2016

Pastor Stephen Derbyshire standing outside the building during the final stages of its construction

Pastor Stephen Derbyshire standing outside the building during the final stages of its construction

Archant

A church is to hold an official opening ceremony for its multi-million pound building tomorrow (Saturday).

The new City Gates building collapsed during its construction in 2012The new City Gates building collapsed during its construction in 2012

The event at City Gates Church, Clements Road, Ilford, will be held between 3pm and 4.30pm followed by a celebration service at 6pm.

Dignitaries, including Cllr Gurdial Bhamra, Mayor of Redbridge, and community leaders will attend the event to join in the festivities.

The Church’s adminstrator, Michelle Ngabonziza said: “It’s overwhelming, we are finally going home.

“All of us, children, young people, adults, all our services can come together in one building, we can feel like we are all together.”

Since work began on constructing the new building in 2010. services had been held at different venues, including the cinema Cineworld, Clements Road, Ilford.

In 2012, the under construction building unexpectedly came crashing to the ground.

Miraculously, even though 20 workmen had left the site minutes before the collapse, no one was seriously hurt.

The project was funded entirely by 1,200-strong congregation who gave willingly to raise the £7.5million needed to build the centre.

With five floors, the building boasts a large auditorium, office space, children’s facilities and even its own coffee shop.

Ms Ngabonziza continued: “It is amazing to feel that this is what the church has achieved.

“It is a nice building. It feels really good when we are in there.”

For more information, visit the “what’s on” page at citygates.london


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