Katherine Graham Memorial Church to become heritage site soon

Kalimpong, 02 Feb:

Katherine Graham Memorial Church located in Delo, Kalimpong was surveyed by West Bengal Heritage Commission to convert it into a heritage site soon. It is learnt that the West Bengal Heritage Commission had visited and sat for two rounds of meeting regarding the same.

"The Heritage Commission has also released a fund of Rs 5,18,37,500 to start the site selection, scaffolding work, layout plan, repair, and renovation. Two to three meetings have been successfully held and the first phase of floating and finalization of the tender will be completed by February. The first phase is expected to be completed within April 2018," said the District Magistrate, Dr. Viswanath.

Sources say that the process had started from 2015, however, another phase of the tender will be started after April, that is when the first phase work is completed.

Katherine Graham Memorial Chapel was built on 24 Sept 1925. It was inaugurated by Lord Lytton, Governor of Bengal. Katherine was Dr. Graham's wife. The Chapel is a place of worship and spiritual oasis where staff, students and visitors can encounter the Almighty and feel His love and protection over them.

A testimony to the lives of love and compassion that both Katherine and Reverend Graham lived, it is a place where their spirit and love can be experienced.

Their mortal remains are interred in the cemetery adjoining the Chapel. But due to the earthquake of 2011 the structure of the chapel has developed multiple cracks, rendering it unsafe for visits and worships. The church had been shut for renovation. It was opened after minor renovation work but was again closed after the 2015 earthquake.

They used to open the church sometimes for schools' carol service but after the 2015 earthquake, the carol service is also not allowed, said a source from Dr. Graham's Homes.

Former students of DGH have a lot of emotional attachment with the church and they are happy with the news of turning the chapel into a heritage site.

When asked to comment, DM, Dr Viswanath said, "It is a good thing for Kalimpong as once the church turns into a heritage site, it will attract a lot of tourists. The old building will be preserved. Tourists will also enjoy. We have sent a proposal for Gouripur house as well and the heritage commission has considered this proposal."