By the beginning of the 20th Century, the fabric of St. James had fallen into a bad state of disrepair. A reference to the state of the building was referred to in the August edition of the 1900 Parish newsletter.
"An official visit was paid to the Church on July 9th by the Rural Dean. His report is published below: -
"I visited Husborne-Crawley church on this date. Good care of everything connected with the Church is taken by the Vicar and Churchwardens. The Church, however, is badly in need of Restoration throughout. This applies both to the fabric and fittings. it is hoped that this may be accomplished at an early date". Heneage. H. Jebb, Rural Dean."
By 1911 the funds were in place and a major restoration was about to begin. The work meant that, apart from the church tower, the body of the church was raised to the ground. The following extracts are taken from The Bedfordshire Times which reported on the progress of the subsequent major restoration.
|Painting of St James Church prior to the restoration in 1911|
|"An important announcement was made by the Rev A Rust at a special vestry meeting on Monday evening to consider the question of Church Restoration. The Vicar stated that after due consideration the Duke of Bedford had undertook to bear the cost of complete renovation of the church, up to £3,500. It will be remembered that the Duke promised recently to bear the cost of renovating the chancel. The announcement was greatly apprecieated, and a resolution asking the Bishop of Ely for necessary faculty for carrying out the work was unanimously passed. The specifications were on view, and it was stated that a tender had been approved and that work would be commenced after Easter to be completed, if possible, by Christmas. The question of renovating the bells was discussed, and it was agreed that a special effort should be made in the parish to raise £300, the sum needed for complete overhauling, renovating and adding two new bells. The present bells are one of the finest peals of 6 in the county, and two new ones of the same tone will be a great acquisition. The reading room will serve as a temporary meeting place for the Church worshippers."|