Hundreds of people packed into a refurbished church in Bedford to celebrate its new look.
Singing, dancing and celebrations were held at the Woodside Christian Centre in Dover Crescent, where visitors were invited to take tours of the new facility.
Among VIPs attending were Bedford and Kempston MP Richard Fuller and Mayor Dave Hodgson.
Martin Tibbert, Lead Pastor at Woodside Church who gave a talk during the event on Sunday, October 11, said: “It was great to have the building packed as we celebrated and thanked God for the provision of our refurbished building.
“We believe that this facility will further strengthen our work in Bedford and we invite anyone interested to come and check us out - you’d be very welcome.
“Church is about people, and Woodside Church is made up of people from many nations, of all ages, whose lives have been transformed by God’s love. It is this love that motivates us to make a difference in our local community and in our town.”
The celebration day comes as the church has seen the recent building project come to and, the development of which took a year to complete and will enable its many activities in the community to continue to grow and expand.
A couple of years ago Woodside’s growth was such that it multiplied its church services, as reported in the T&C, and the building project has been carried out to cope with that.
A spokeswoman for the church said: “This is about the growth of the church and the subsequent impact it is having on the local community in Bedford, from gathering over 100 teenagers at various youth groups every week, to drop-in support group for families in the area, to offering prayer for the long-term sick, among many other activities.”
Starting as a children’s Sunday School at Russell Baptist Church in the 1960s, the gathering grew over time to become Woodside Church, and is now a thriving part of the local community.
During the 30 years is has been opened the members have started two further churches in Bedford - Kings Arms in Ampthill Road and the Southside Family Church (Now called All Nations-South).
The spokeswoman added: “There are around 40 different nations represented. Woodside’s diversity in both nationalities and social backgrounds, as well as taking a modern, accessible approach to church in today’s world is particularly interesting.”