WELL-KNOWN Yorkshire figures are supporting a fundraising appeal to improve Huddersfield Parish Church.
Ten patrons have backed the church's Cornerstone appeal, to raise money for disabled access at the church, refurbishing the building and improving visitor facilities.
The Rev Catherine Ogle, the Vicar of Huddersfield, said: "We've been so pleased by the positive response to our invitations.
"It's a great encouragement to us. The church has a special place in the town and in the heart of many people."
The patrons include Huddersfield MP Barry Sheerman; Kirklees Mayor Clr Mary Harkin; the Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Dr Ingrid Roscoe; a former Dean of Carlisle, the Very Rev Henry Stapleton; the Bishop of Wakefield, the Rt Rev Stephen Platten; former Calendar news broadcaster Geoff Druett; Huddersfield businessman David Armitage; and Lady Wilson of Rievaulx, the widow of Huddersfield-born Prime Minister Harold Wilson.
Last of the Summer Wine actress Dora Bryan has also become a patron. She often visits the church while filming her role as Roz in the Holme Valley sitcom.
Holmfirth artist Ashley Jackson is another patron.
He will cut the ribbon with Kirklees Deputy Mayor Clr Margaret Fearnley to officially launch the Cornerstone appeal on October 2.
From 10.30am, an open day will be held at the church, to let visitors learn about its history and comment on its future.
Entertainment will be by Kirklees Music School pupils, Huddersfield's True Colours gospel group, pupils from Halifax Holy Trinity Senior School, Huddersfield University students and parish church organist Stephen Smith.
The day after the launch, there will be a pageant in the church from 10am.
Members of the congregation will dress up to make characters from the church's 1,000-year history come alive.
Organisers are still trying to locate a First World War costume for the pageant. It needs to fit a slim 6ft 2in man, who will appear as a wounded war hero.
Mrs Ogle said: "This is an important part in our pageant. After the war, two beautiful additions were made to the church, in memory of the dead."
Later that day, the Bishop of Wakefield will visit the church to preach at a Songs of Praise service, from 6.30pm.
Mrs Ogle said: "We're so pleased the bishop has made time to come and worship with us at the start of this great venture."
* Anyone who wants to help with the Cornerstone appeal should contact Mrs Ogle or Huddersfield curate the Rev Matthew Pollard on 01484 427964.