A Stone church has been awarded a grant of more than £100,000 to fund vital repairs.

St Mary the Virgin in Church Road has received a confirmed grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund of £111,400 - making up 76 per cent of the funds needed for essential repairs to the chancel and nave of the Grade II-listed building.

Church Warden, Maggie Jarvis, said: "We are delighted to receive this award from the Heritage Lottery Fund which will help us to future proof this beautiful and historic building as a resource for the community, as well as place of worship and education for the next generation.

"St Mary the Virgin at Stone is a thriving place of worship in the Anglican tradition which has a vibrant history going back over 700 years.

"Although the building has seen many changes it is still a focal point in the local community and attracts the interest of many different groups."

The award will be used as part of the parish church council's continuing efforts to conserve and maintain the unique public building for future generations.

In repairing the chancel, upgrading the heating and producing accessible information leaflets and a hearing loop the Church Council hopes to extend the use of the building to community groups to hold meetings, talks and heritage tours.

A project to produce an updated history guide of St Mary and new visitor leaflets covering specific aspects of the building including its stained glass windows, memorials and architecture is also under way.

These will also be made available on the church's website stmarystone.org.uk