A plan for sewage works could scupper a proposal to turn an unused church into a community centre.

A community group wants to take over Lonan’s All Saints’ Church from the Church of England.

But it has been suggested that sewage works might be built nearby.

Manx Utilities will make an announcement about that next week.

If the site is close to the old church, it could cause the campaigners to scrap the plans for the community centre altogether.

On Sunday, 60 people attended a public meeting about the building, which shut as a church eight years ago.

The church was closed after a surveyor’s report into the state of the building’s electrical system judged it to be a health and safety risk, and at the time, it was believed it might be a temporary measure.

There has been a campaign to reopen it as a community centre for some years, but it has hit some stumbling blocks.

One of the advocates of the community centre plan, Stewart Clague, told the Isle of Man Courier: ‘We’re weighing up the financial situation to see if we can get enough help from the public to get the church reopened again.

‘We got it over to the public that we wanted to re-open it as a hall for the good of everyone in the local community; sports, concerts, meetings etc.

‘There will be a stage erected and proper heating put in it and it will be for anyone to use or hire.’

The 189-year-old church is owned by the Church of England. If it isn’t sold, it could have its roof removed and allowed to become a ruin.

Mr Clague said: ‘We met Archdeacon Irene Cowell who was very supportive and is willing to do all she can to help us. At the meeting, we discussed the site’s plans and the finances involved.’

The site is home to the Archibald Knox war memorials which recognise the men, from Laxey and Lonan, who fought in conflicts.

Mr Clague said: ‘They want to hand it over to somebody and there is £70,000 that belongs to the All Saints’ Church so that will give us a start if we go ahead.’

Manx Utilities is due to provide an update about its plans to Garff Commissioners.

Mr Clague, who is also a Garff commissioner, said: ‘If this plan goes ahead, I’m afraid we most probably won’t be going ahead with the church plans as it won’t be fair to the local community.

‘What we want to happen is for it to go back to the original system and pump it straight to Meary Veg [in Santon].’

Millions of litres of raw sewage are pumped into Laxey bay every day.

The issue of sewage and Manx Utilities’ plans for the Laxey area has been highly controversial in the past.

The community group Better for Laxey Bay calling for parliamentary investigation in 2018 into what it called the ‘huge inaccuracies’ in the costing of the planned new sewage works for Laxey and Baldrine.