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Handrail for church steps

  • lemelman
  • CV21/26
  • Complete

An ancient church has two wide steps from the aisle up to the transept. One parishioner has stumbled and tripped and the Parish Council is concerned that another accident could result in serious injury.

The Parish Council were unable to find any manufacturer or supplier to meet their requirements, viz…

Because its an ancient church there were several caveats to observe…

  1. No modifications to any part of the church were permitted.
  2. No holes could be drilled into any part, and no screws or nails were allowed.
  3. When removed, no traces of it should be left.
  4. It had to be removable to allow uninterrupted access for weddings/funerals.
  5. Ideally it should be moveable to the side of the steps rather than be relegated to a side room for weddings/funerals.
  6. It must be stable and secure to provide confidence for its users.
  7. Its appearance must be sympathetic with the church interior.
  8. The aisle, steps, and transept are carpeted.

The solution

Various basic designs were considered. Likely contenders were presented to the Parish Council and, after several months of deliberation, the current design was approved.

It consists of  a heavy gauge steel base that clamps firmly to the undersides of the noses of the two steps. The clamps have outriggers (hidden under the step noses) that provide lateral stability to the handrail. The base is comprised of three parts that bolt together, each containing a steel socket that receives the lower end of a wrought iron spindle.. The top of each spindle is machined to link to a steel shoe that is screwed to the underside of the oak handrail. The oak handrail was made from a section taken from an old oak work surface, hand shaped and stained to match other woodwork in the church.

The benefit


The PCC was delighted with it, and considered it to be a real improvement in church access.

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4 responses to “Handrail for church steps”

  1. daniel klein says:

    we are looking for two handrails to be installed on the altar at Assumption Church to assist elderly eucharistic ministers when they need to descend the steps when providing communion to the parishioners. these could be similar to what is pictured here or made of red oak if possible. please contact me with whatever requirements you need to receive these handrails. thank you!!

  2. Teremoana Tangatapoto says:

    Can you please send me a quotes of your design indoor church rail


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