THE Friends of Malvern Priory are bidding to add a new stained-glass window to the church for the first time in almost a century.

One of Britain's leading stained glass artists is coming to present his ideas for a Millennium commemorative window in Malvern Priory.

Tom Denny, whose previous commissions include designing and making a window for Gloucester Cathedral, is coming to Malvern to meet the Priory's congregation on Wednesday, September 20.

Originally, the Friends had proposed an engraved-glass screen in the church, to make St Anne's chapel into a haven of tranquillity.

"But English Heritage and other bodies put the complete kibosh on that," said Friends' chairman Basil Dewing, "so we went to our next idea, a stained glass window."

If it is installed, the stained glass will join the Priory's famous 15th Century windows, one of which was donated by Henry VII and another by the ill-fated Richard III, when his was Duke of Gloucester.

The church also has Victorian windows; the most recent is one commemorating a leading Freemason, the Provincial Grand Master Augustus Godson, installed in 1906.

Mr Dewing said it was too early to say how much the project would cost or how long it would take, but he said the Friends were prepared to pay for it.

Twelve stained-glass designers submitted portfolios for examination by the Friends' council, and the result was a majority in favour of Mr Denny.

Mr Dewing said: "After the meeting, Mr Denny will submit designs, and it will be quite a lengthy process after that, because there will have to be extensive consultations."

The meeting is open to all members of the congregation.

The nearest examples of Mr Denny's work are at Martley church and Gloucester Cathedral. The Gloucester window was installed in 1992 in the South Ambulatory Chapel and is on the theme of 'Praise'

n What do you think would be an appropriate design for the Priory's proposed Millennium window? Why not write and let us know.