Damaged Oak Beams Threaten High Wycombe Church

Local campaigners in High Wycombe are concerned that an ancient church in the town is gradually being whittled away in the name of conservation.

An attack of deathwatch beetle has led to the ancient oak beams in All Saint’s Parish Church being badly damaged, placing the bell tower in jeopardy. This has led to calls for the historic bells to be replaced with lighter versions as part of a scheme to strengthen the tower.

Campaigners, however, believe that not enough has been done to examine the option of wood conservation and using the best oak carpentry techniques to preserve both the original structure of the tower and the original bells.

Chris Woodman of the High Wycombe Society told the Bucks Free Press that “some of the bells are of historic significance, carrying inscriptions with the names of important personalities in the town’s history – the Marquis of Lansdown and the Earl of Wycombe.”

“We shall be sorry if all these bells are lost and would like to see at least one of them preserved in an appropriate location.”