lifestyle

Church adds huge spiral slide to bring worshippers to downstairs pews


Revd Joel Sales said: ‘We want to say actually this is a church for everyone young and old’ (Picture: Tom Wren / SWNS)

A church has undergone renovation during the pandemic to allow worshippers to get to the downstairs pews in two ways – via the stairs or a huge new spiral slide.

The works on Pattern Church were finished at the height of the pandemic, which means the slide has not been put to full use until now.

The formal entrance to the church, located in Swindon in Wiltshire, takes the congregation to the first floor, but the church services take place on the lower ground floor.

The church was bought by the Diocese of Bristol in 2018 and has been going through a big redevelopment programme.

Sunday was the first day in which the slide has been fully operational.

Pattern Church Revd Joel Sales (Picture: Tom Wren / SWNS)
Joel said: ‘As a church, we believe God is fun and joyful – so what better way to say that to people than a slide?’ (Picture: Tom Wren / SWNS)

Revd Joel Sales said: ‘It’s quite an austere building and the slide says actually this is a place for everyone.

‘As a church, we believe God is fun and joyful – so what better way to say that to people than a slide?

‘For hundreds of years, Christians have been making stained-glass windows and works of art to convey what God is like.

Luckily the Grade II listed building already had a hole in a place they could put the slide (Picture: Tom Wren / SWNS)

‘This slide is almost like that.

‘People think Christianity is all serious and solemn. Actually, it’s a journey into belief, joy and life.’

Joel said that while he was very much in favour of the slide, they faced a bit of difficulty getting the plans in place, owing to the fact that the church is a Grade II listed building.

‘But most recently it was an Italian restaurant and there were all kinds of plasterboard everywhere,’ he added.

The slide is for kids and adults alike (Picture: Tom Wren / SWNS)

‘In stripping that though we luckily found a hole in the right place. They then said we could do the slide.

‘I’ve heard of cathedrals who’ll occasionally put a helter-skelter thing in temporarily. And I’ve heard of churches with a separate soft play area used for kids.

‘But in terms of a slide people use to get into church, I’m not aware of any other.’

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