A £1.7million project 15 years in the planning has transformed Slough's Edwardian St Paul's Church in Stoke Road.

The old layout of the church would see visitors enter a square porch, before going through a modern and rather unwelcoming lounge to reach the main area of worship.

Now a new main entrance has been created in the south wall of the old side chapel with the chapel and chancel becoming a new foyer and hub for the building.

The chancel and chapel floor levels have been lowered so the whole interior is at the same level - a process that contributed a great deal to the overall cost.

The nave remains as the worship space with a new dais and seating facing north.

The old pews are replaced by chairs and the ornate pulpit and altar - although still highly visible features of the church - are now replaced by a simpler space from which the vicar will address the congregation without towering over them in traditional style.

Church warden Chris Broadbent and recently retired vicar Reverend Mike Cotterell have been the driving force behind the transformation over the 15 years it has taken to come to fruition..

The first £1million was raised by selling the old hall in Wexham Road and a house which belonged to the church - the rest was raised by the congregation and supporters.

Chris, 65, is married to lay minister Helen Broadbent and is a grandfather of two.

He said: "Work started in July, 2018 and was supposed to last 35 weeks. It has taken longer but the result is a church for the 21st century. You no longer have to walk through rooms to reach where you want to be, there is a welcoming new entrance offering access to every part of the building.

"The most interesting discovery was an underground room with a coal furnace with a ladder someone would have climbed down to stoke. It was a primitive form of early heating."

The newly restored church has new underfloor heating, lighting, electrics, flooring and audio-visual system.

The Bishop of Buckingham the Right Reverend Alan Wilson will officiate when the church formally reopens on March 15 at 10.30am.