Slave chapel restoration and move making headway
Published Saturday, February 8, 2014 5:25PM EST
London’s historic Fugitive Slave Chapel is getting closer to restoration and a new home.
Those involved in the project are optimistic about its future and what it can mean to the city as fundraising efforts continue.
An event by the Karen Schuessler Singers is planned for Saturday night. The program, called Road to Freedom, is set for 8 p.m. at Wesley-Knox United Church.
The chapel was built in 1848 as a place of worship for African Americans who had escaped slavery in the U.S. The plan is to move the chapel from Thames Street, next to Beth Emanuel Church on Grey Street. That’s where the congregation had re-located to about a century ago.
"We're going to have two heritage buildings basically representing a common history,” says George McNeish, the chair of the preservation project.
McNeish says along with paying for the move there's a significant amount of work that has to be done to the chapel.
"It's in very bad shape and it needs a lot of work done to it just to, you know, keep it from falling down basically."
Two hurdles remain in saving the building. There is paperwork needed in order to begin excavation for a basement. Also another $45,000 is needed to secure the building.
Those determined to preserve the chapel feel they’re making headway on both fronts.