St Peter's Church


News from the St.Peter's church at the heart of the village.


Artwork: Alvary Scott

ST PETER'S CHURCH

We were pleased to welcome our new vicar to Berrynarbor for church services following his installation in June this year and he is settling in very well indeed. Mark also attended our PCC meeting in July with many new ideas for our Church and School.

As mentioned in the August Newsletter, Mark suggested changing the timings for our Church services and following consultation with our parishioners, it was agreed that all services will now start at 9.30 a.m. Whilst the new timing may present some difficulty for some older churchgoers, we must try and make this work - bearing in mind that Mark has to fit his busy schedule in with both Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's Churches together with us here in Berrynarbor. The new timings will, of course, give more free time to parishioners in Berrynarbor following church services on a Sunday. Rev. Mark's contact details are now available on the notice board adjacent to the Lych Gate.

James Electrics have now completed the work on our faulty internal spotlights, now replaced with new efficient LED lighting units. We are in the process of applying Smart Water anti-theft chemical to many parts of the church [exterior and interior] as requested by our Church Insurance Company. Our Gardener, Simon, continues to maintain the two churchyards to a very high standard, and during the recent heat wave it is so relaxing to sit on the bench near the Church porch donated by Jill McCrae in memory of her husband Iain and admire the beautiful view over the village.

We have enjoyed having church weddings in June and July and look forward to another happy couple to 'tie the knot' in September.

Harvest time will soon be upon us and we look forward to having our Harvest Festival Service on October 2nd followed by our Harvest Supper on October 5th, held in the Manor Hall. As usual, there will be a superb Buffet on offer together with wine, beer, cider, soft drinks, tea and coffee. The popular team quiz will once again provide lots of laughter. Tickets for this popular event are available, if any are left, from the Village Shop and PCC committee members.

Rev Mark is determined to regenerate the Christmas season involving Berrynarbor School by introducing a special Carol Service in our beautiful church prior to Christmas.

We shall be changing the time of the Christmas Eve Service to work alongside the Village Carols in the Square.

We pray for all those who are sick in our village - and especially at this time for all the refugees fleeing the war zone throughout the Ukraine and the people of Pakistan who are enduring dreadful flooding following exceptional monsoon rain. An inspiring footnote to this is that we recently welcomed a young Ukrainian lady by the name of Lillia to our Church Village Service. Lillia had expressed a wish to visit Berrynarbor Church with her Carer at this difficult time for all Ukrainian people.

Finally, on behalf of St. Peter's, I should like to thank Judie for printing our church notices in the wonderful newsletter - it will be sadly missed. Enjoy your retirement, Judie!

Sue Neale

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Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

We were pleased to attend Rev. Mark's Installation at a special service on 13th June at Pip & Jim's Church. The Bishop of Exeter hosted the Service together with clergy from the surrounding area. Following the Service, ministers and the congregation gathered in the Church Hall to enjoy an excellent buffet which was contributed by the ladies from Berrynarbor, Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's churches.

We hope to see Rev. Mark take services in St. Peter's, Berrynarbor, very soon and that all services will be able to return to a normal and regular pattern. Mark has suggested that the commencement of church services should change to 9.30 a.m. Sundays, easing his timing schedule when taking services at St. Peter's, Combe Martin. We realise that this earlier time may be inconvenient for some people, but it will make travelling a lot easier for Mark and will also give additional time for parishioners to spend at home or elsewhere for the remainder of the day.

Our Gift Day was a huge success once again and the sunny weather was a real bonus. A huge range of teddy bears and other cuddly toys were abseiled from the Church Tower and all the children from Berrynarbor School and Pre-School were awarded certificates on the day. A huge big thank you to Kevin Brooks, Richard Barrett, Gareth Cornell, Beverley Grant, Tom Oliver and other volunteers for their efforts at the top and by the church tower in keeping the fun going for the children all morning. We raised the sum of £300.50 for this special day!

Church weddings have featured recently and we send our sincere good wishes to all the married couples for a happy time together in the years ahead!

On a sad note, we send our deepest sympathy to Kevin and family upon the passing of Betty Brooks, our long serving Church caretaker, who died peacefully in North Devon Hospital recently. Betty was a real character and will be sadly missed by the church community, residents in Berrynarbor and beyond. A special memorial service for Betty will be held in Berrynarbor church in the near future.

Finally, we pray for all those who are sick in our village, and especially at this time for all the refugees fleeing the war zone throughout the Ukraine and hope that families that have been separated from loved ones are reunited once again.

Note - Please be aware that we have had to move the black and green wheelie bins to the right of the top gate to ease the collection in Barton Lane by N.D. Council and apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Sue Neale


Lost Property

Some three weeks ago a very large light brown tarpaulin/gazebo cover was left in the church porch, which is now kept safely in our vestry.

We have no idea who this belongs to, but perhaps it was left over from the Queen's Jubilee celebrations or even a wedding party? Please contact Sue Neale on 01271-883893 if you are the owner or perhaps know to whom it might belong. Thank you.

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Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

We look forward to the installation of our new vicar Rev. Mark Ruoff on Monday 13th June, to be held at Pip & Jim's Church, Ilfracombe. This special service will commence at 7.00pm.

Following his settling in, we in Berrynarbor look forward to welcoming Mark and his wife Tandy and family at St. Peter's during June and hope that Church Services will return to a more regular basis in the months and years ahead. Mark will of course be responsible for both Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's churches as well - and we all hope that a long period of stability will come to fruition.

Rev. Mark is keen to involve himself with Berrynarbor School and to build on the important relationship with the Church and new activities.

To that end, our Treasurer, Tom Oliver has organised a Vegetables to Grow for Harvest Festival event which involves all the children in growing onions, runner beans and marrows during the year in their gardens at home and also at school. Both Tom and his partner Ebe, together with myself, visited the School when they returned from their Easter break to explain the event; and using Tom's expertise as Manager of St. John's Garden Centre on how to go about growing the vegetables, the seeds of which were kindly donated by St. John's and presented to all the children in special small nets. Also included in each pack was a pot and small bag of compost.

A question-and-answer session was held and the children were encouraged to take photographs of their plants in progress and bring them to our special Church Gift Day on Friday the 17th June commencing at 9.30 a.m.

This special day will include the popular Zip Wiring of Teddy Bears from the top of the Church tower - an event which was held a few years ago on one of the hottest days of the year! The children have been asked to bring their teddy bears, monkeys, lions, tigers and other cuddly toys to have a real fun day for all!! The Pre-School will also be invited to bring their favourite toys to join in all the fun, and where possible mums, dads and all others will be most welcome to attend and make this day really special for all!

Our Easter Service was very well attended - 32 adults and 2 children. Donations from the congregation amounted to £345 which will be sent to the Ukrainian Appeal Fund.

We all hope and pray that this dreadful conflict will come to an end soon and that the brave people of Ukraine will finally be at peace once and for all! The Ukrainian flag is currently flying from the Church Tower in support of all Ukrainians.

We pray for all those in Berrynarbor who are unwell at this time whether they are in hospital or at home recuperating.

We have just received news that Margaret Sowerby has sadly died. Margaret who had been a member of Berrynarbor Choir for many years and Treasurer of our PCC will be greatly missed by all those who knew her. We send our deepest sympathy to her husband Roger and family at this difficult time.

We urge residents to read the Church notice board by the lych gate and Village Shop for information about forthcoming services. It is regretted that sometimes there will be some Sundays when a service is just not possible - but on a positive note, we look forward to the arrival of our new Vicar when the service structure will become more settled.

Last but not least, we thank all the Bellringers for their valuable contribution on Sunday mornings and also for several weddings which they will be ringing for throughout the year.

Sue Neale

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Artwork: David Duncan

ST PETER'S CHURCH

We were pleased to meet our new Vicar, the Revd. Mark Ruoff, at a special service held at Pip & Jim's Church on Sunday 20th February, and also delighted to meet his wife Tandy and two of the children who had all driven down from Hammersmith to spend the weekend in North Devon. As mentioned in the last newsletter, we look forward to Revd. Mark's Installation at a special Service on June 13th at Pip & Jim's Church.

We enjoyed a joint communion service at Berrynarbor on Sunday, 30th January when over 50 worshipped together, led by Rev. George Billington. The music group played and sang during the service and Stuart played the final hymn. Refreshments were shared afterwards.

A reminder for all about church services [which we reflected on previously] may be temporarily reduced to three per month whilst we await Revd. Mark's arrival here in Berrynarbor. Please read the notice boards by the lych gate and porch - as well as in the Community Shop and Post Office.

Our AGM will be held on the 21st March 2022 at 4.00 p.m. in the Vestry and look forward to seeing parishioners at this important meeting. We are particularly in need of a PCC Secretary to take the load off of my shoulders, so please come forward if you can! Please ring me on 883893 at any time.

We have some exiting new events coming up this year - one of which will involve Berrynarbor School in an ongoing project. Tom Oliver, our Treasurer, will be organising this very soon. We are also hoping to have a repeat event involving all the children from both School and Pre-School with a special Teddy Bear, and other cuddly animals, abseiling from the church tower! Remember the last time on one of the hottest days of the year! Let's hope that we have fine weather for this super fun day on June 17th, and to incorporate our Annual Gift Day which we have been unable to hold due to the Pandemic.

We are pleased that our 5 new gas fired heaters are up and running, ensuring a warm church for services on those occasional cold days.

On a sad note, we send our deepest sympathy to the relatives of Bill Huxtable who died after a short illness. Bill was a regular Bellringer here in Berrynarbor for many years and it was fitting that our regular team of Bellringers rang at his funeral on Friday 25th February.

On a happier note, we hosted a Christening Service on Sunday 6th March for baby Reuban, with Martyn Tyrell, Curate at Shirwell Church, taking the service.

We particularly look forward to several couples getting married this year - especially since some have previously had to cancel their special day due to the covid pandemic.

We pray for all those who are sick in the village - and especially at this time for all the refugees fleeing the war zone throughout the Ukraine, and hope that families that have been separated from loved ones are reunited once again.

Sue Neale

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Artwork: Paul Swailes

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

We are pleased announce that Rev. Mark Ruoff has been appointed as the new Rector for our three parishes.

Mark, his wife Tayla, and their family will be moving from his current parish in Hammersmith to take up his post in June. We were hoping he might commence his duties at Easter, but his daughter is taking her GCSE's and therefore they didn't wish to disrupt her education at such a critical time.

Mark will be travelling down to North Devon for half term [14th to 20th February] and will be taking a Joint Service at Pip & Jim's at 10.30 a.m. on Sunday 20th February, when he would like to meet as many parishioners as possible.

32 adults and two children enjoyed our annual Carol Service, held for the first time at the Morning Service. Tea and coffee, mince pies, stollen and festive biscuits were served afterwards, which enabled everyone to enjoy some social time together.

During these difficult times, we were fortunate in having Rev. Clive Thomas from Ilfracombe to take this service and our sincere thanks to him for helping us out on this occasion.

Once again, the annual Midnight Mass Service at 9.30 p.m. was very poorly attended with only 13 stalwarts. Unfortunately, there is a conflict of interest - Singing Carols in the Square, which is a wonderful event for many people. This was always traditionally held on a different evening until a few years ago. Please may I respectfully ask the organisers to consider changing the night to the weekend before Christmas, so that all can enjoy both events at this special time of year?

A big thank you to Pip and Tony for their help in decorating the Church for Christmas; to Elaine Filer for keeping the cobbles weeded; to the team of cleaners who keep the church tidy, plus Carol Hood for doing sterling work cleaning the brass and silver.

Running Berrynarbor Church during the pandemic from the early part of 2020 has been a huge challenge for us all. For the best part of a year there were no services held and our income was virtually zero! We are grateful for those in our parish who have donated money to the church throughout these difficult times but our main financial reserves have been severely depleted with an expenditure outlay of £76,000 for repairs to the exterior of the building and a further £10,000 to replace five internal gas heaters

which were deemed unsafe, not to mention Ecclesiastical Insurance outlay of £3,780 per year for this Grade 2 Listed Building. The responsibility for maintaining the building lies with the elected members of our PCC.

Berrynarbor Church is an essential part of this village. Hosting Church Services, Weddings, Funerals, Baptisms, Bellringers and the maintenance of the two churchyards for the benefit of many residents' loved ones, being just a small fragment of what your church is about! Church Services are advertised on our notice boards and in the village shop.

We continue to pray for all who are sick in the village and hope that 2022 will be a healthier year for us all.

Sue Neale

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Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST PETER'S CHURCH

As mentioned in the last edition of the Newsletter, we have prepared our Parish Profile alongside the Parish Profiles of Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's churches, and have already submitted our advertising campaign to attract candidates for interview. The good news is such that the short listing for a new Rector took place on 16th November, with an interview date set for 1st December. It is hoped that the appointment of the successful candidate will take up his/her position in the Benefice around Eastertime.

A joint service was enjoyed by all 3 churches at St. Peter's ad Vincula, Combe Martin, on Sunday 31st October. The Combined Music Group led the singing with the accompaniment of guitars, piano and clarinet, and Stuart opened and closed the service with hymns played on the pipe organ.

Berrynarbor Church Services are advertised on the notice boards by the Lych Gate and also in the Church Porch and top churchyard gate. Whilst we strive to have 4 services each month, it is occasionally proving difficult to have a Vicar or Lay Readers to take all services. So it is important to read these notices in advance to avoid unnecessary journeys to our beautiful church - when only 3 services are held in the month.

At this moment we are not sure which clergy will take our Christmas Services, but a new Carols for Christmas will take place on Sunday 19th December at 11.00 a.m. in place of our usual Christmas Carol Service. We look forward to a really good attendance to celebrate the birth of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

Our Harvest Festival Service on Sunday 10th October was held with thanks to our ladies for providing excellent refreshments following the service. Our Annual Harvest Supper Evening in the Manor Hall was cancelled this year in view of the difficulties presented by the current Covid situation.

We must, however, convey our sincere thanks to all those who contributed tins and packets of food to our collection point adjacent to the Church Font, and also to the Village Community Shop where their Food Basket was filled to capacity with produce for the Ilfracombe Food Bank. Many thanks again to those good people who contributed so generously to help those who are in need.

We still need someone to volunteer for the position of PCC Secretary so please contact us on 883893 if you are able to offer your services. Please remember that we meet only 6 times in a year - so it's not a difficult task!

We continue to pray at this time for all those who are sick, awaiting operations or awaiting hospital treatment.

We send our best wishes to everyone in Berrynarbor for a Happy Christmas and hope that the New Year will bring back a healthier life for all.

Sue Neale

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Artwork: Steve Angold [Aged 10]

ST PETER'S CHURCH

Stuart and I have been on a much-needed break in North Yorkshire and Scotland, and so this contribution will be a little shorter than usual.

One piece of good news is that the congregation is now allowed to sing during the service. We still have to wear face masks, but singing makes the service so much more enjoyable.

Church services are advertised on the notice boards by the lych gate, as well as in the church porch and top churchyard gate. Whilst we strive to have 4 services each month, occasionally this is reduced to 3 when we are regretfully without a Minister or Lay Reader to conduct the service. We do, however, convey our sincere thanks to Rev John Roles and Rural Dean Rev Rosie Austin who are covering for wedding and funeral services in Berrynarbor during this period of Interregnum.

On a positive note, following a meeting of all three churches within our group [Combe Martin, Berrynarbor and Pip & Jim's] we have prepared our individual Parish Profiles in preparation for interviews with new candidates for the post of Priest in Charge. We are hoping to commence these interviews in November/December.

You may recall Stuart's plea for people to serve on our PCC otherwise Berrynarbor Church will be in serious danger of closing. It is gratifying, therefore, to have had two volunteers to come forward and join us - but we still desperately need a PCC Secretary to help bolster our ranks as soon as possible. Please contact me on 883893 if you are willing to help us! Remember, there are only 6 meetings in the year - which is not a big ask!

Repairs to the church are now completed and our sincere thanks to Kevin Brooks and his team for their hard work over the last year. Also, we now have 5 brand new gas heaters installed by Martin Pollard of Hydronics Plumbing & Heating Ltd., and the condemned heaters have now been removed.

We must also pay great tribute to our Gardener, Simon Partridge, who keeps both churchyards in the most beautiful condition. So many visitors and local residents have passed comment on his efforts throughout this year!

We continue to pray at this time for all those who are sick, awaiting operations or hospital treatment. Our sincere condolences to Lorna Bowden's family, her funeral was held whilst we were away. Also, the Gibbs family at The Lodge, on the loss of Yvonne.

Finally, isn't it great to hear the Church bells ringing once again especially with another Wedding later on this year. Let's hope the weather stays fine for the couple!

Sue Neale

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Artwork: Steve Angold [Aged 10]

ST PETER'S CHURCH, BERRYNARBOR

By the time you read this, we all hope that the Government's decision [to be announced on Monday 19th July] will be to relax the current restrictions enabling churches throughout the land to reopen and allow congregations to sing once more! We hope that many businesses will begin to prosper once again and that everyone will be vaccinated against this dreadful Virus. We also pray that the current Delta virus is brought under control and that our NHS will be able to redirect their efforts to the huge number of people awaiting appointments for specialist treatment.

The sad news, however, that Rev. Peter Churcher has resigned from his position, has resulted in the three churches under his mantle are once again without a Priest in Charge. We wish Peter, his wife Josie and family happiness in their new venture. We shall, of course. notify everyone when we have news of a replacement.

Despite this absence, Church Services will be held on Sundays commencing at 11.00 a.m. and we shall ensure that more detail regarding the type of service will be advertised throughout the village and our Village Shop in August and beyond. We are very fortunate in having George Billington, who has kindly offered to take two services each month, which will help us enormously through this difficult period.

Repairs to the Church are nearing completion, and the fitting of new cast iron guttering and downpipes at the rear of the church will shortly be completed. The scaffolding will soon be removed - and the church will once again ensure a beautiful backdrop for the weddings taking place in July and September this year.

We continue to pray at this time for Margaret Sowerby who is undergoing chemotherapy and following a difficult time in hospital is now back at home with her husband Roger. We all hope that in the months ahead Margaret responds well to specialist treatment and returns to her bright and happy nature that we all know and love!

We have just heard that one of our Berrynarbor Choir members Lesley Symes has sadly passed away following a long illness. We send our deepest sympathy to Lesley's husband Dave at this very sad time.

Finally, we all look forward to hearing the Church bells ringing again, and hope that this will be possible in the very near future.

Stuart Neale

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ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Whilst we are able to hold Church Services on Sundays, the church still remains closed during the week. However, we patiently await the UK Government's announcement on Monday 17th May [followed by recommendations from the Diocese of Exeter], which hopefully will enable us to fully re-open our church in Berrynarbor to welcome villagers, parishioners and visitors alike.

Our AGM will have taken place on the same day and we all hope that the elected PCC members will now look forward to a more positive year ahead with hopefully the Covid situation, which has affected the whole nation, will diminish from these shores!

We'll continue to ensure that parishioners and visitors to the church sensibly adhere to on-going Government safety guidelines for the remainder of this year, but we must not let our guard down and ruin all the good work carried out by the NHS, care staff and many more in this country over the last 18 months.

Repairs to the church are progressing very well, and renovation to the cast iron guttering and downpipes will shortly be completed, plus repairs to the end gable adjacent to the front porch. Stained glass windows, where loose sections have been identified, have now been repaired and cleaned. The Vestry windows have also been carefully cleaned, and the huge stained-glass window in the bell ringing chamber, which has become very dirty, will soon receive its first professional clean in 20 years! NB: The height of this window is such that special scaffolding/ladders will be needed to enable safe access!

We hope that in the near future, Rev. Peter Churcher, bearing in mind improvements to his wife's health and special family commitments, will be able to return to full duties to the three churches to which he is dedicated.

It is very heartening that we have taken three wedding bookings for this year and four for next year - so we look forward, as I'm sure the couples involved will, to such an important event in their lives together.

We pray at this time for Margaret Sowerby who is undergoing chemotherapy and following a difficult time in hospital is now back at home with her husband Roger. We all hope that in the months ahead she responds well to specialist treatment and returns to her bright and happy nature that we all know and love!

Church services will be held on Sundays commencing at 11.00 a.m. and we shall ensure that more detail regarding the type of service and timings will be advertised throughout the village and in the Community Shop and Post Office in June and beyond.

Finally, we all look forward to hearing the church bells ringing again, and hope that this will be possible in July/August.

Stuart Neale

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Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

As mentioned in the previous edition of the Newsletter, a new lockdown was introduced following the Prime Minister's broadcast on the 4th January.

It therefore comes as no surprise that Berrynarbor, Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's churches remain closed until further notice.

However, following the UK vaccination programme, which as you all know by now has been an unqualified success, coupled with the restrictions placed upon us all at this difficult time, has happily shown a substantial reduction in hospital cases, and has, for the moment at least, given us all hope for the future. It is therefore hoped that our church and others in neighbouring communities will be opened in the coming months.

Repairs to the church are progressing very well, and renovation to the cast iron guttering and downpipes is now underway. As I'm sure you all know, the rain, cold temperatures and strong winds have severely hampered our intrepid building workers and we all hope that better weather arrives soon.

Our Vicar, Rev. Peter Churcher, has recently had to reduce his pastoral care and activities due to his wife's illness and this has meant that he has to devote more of his time to his four children with regard to their schooling and general welfare. This has meant that attending to three churches has meant that Pip & Jim's, Ilfracombe, will become self-supporting for the next month or so. Rev. Peter will, however, be able to give some time to both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin Church communities - which is most welcome. We pray that Peter's wife, Josie, improves and send her our best wishes for a speedy recovery.

A few weeks ago, we learnt of the death of Sylvia Berry aged 94 - a regular churchgoer for many years. Sylvia had lived in Barton Lane for a long time but due to health reasons decided to live with her son Richard at Honeywell Farm near Mullacott. Sylvia was a lovely lady and is now at rest with her husband in Berrynarbor churchyard. We send our condolences to Richard and his family at this sad time.

We have just learnt that Chris Pocock from Berrynarbor Park has died following a short illness and we send our deepest sympathy to Phil and family at this sad time. Chris was an early member of Berrynarbor Church Choir, she will be missed by us all.

We shall keep everyone informed when the Church is to be opened again - which we hope will be very soon.

Once again, keep safe and well!

Stuart Neale

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Artwork: Paul Swailes

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

During these difficult times, it is heartening that we had two services led by Rev. Peter leading up to Christmas. However, our Christmas Eve Service was poorly attended, in some part due to the very cold evening and the ongoing situation with regard to the Covid pandemic. At least the Christmas lighting in the churchyard and around the Church wall was a very welcome sight for all to enjoy!

We are pleased to confirm that repairs to the church roof valley have been completed and other areas requiring attention will shortly be underway. Our builders have been working under great difficulty with rain interruptions being all to frequent!

We have one piece of good news with our quest to find a new Treasurer. Tom Oliver has very kindly offered to take on this important role and this will be a great deal of comfort to our outgoing Treasurer, Margaret Sowerby, who has been aided by her husband Roger. We are also delighted to welcome Kate Sargent to the fold and look forward to her contribution at the next PCC meeting in 2021.

However, our first meeting scheduled for 11th January, had to be cancelled following the Prime Minister's nationwide broadcast on the 4th January advising that a new lockdown would be introduced immediately in an effort to contain the new strain of the virus which is spreading rapidly through the country. Following discussions with Rev. Peter, our PCC and some regular churchgoers, it has been decided to close the Church for church services. Weddings and funerals are exempt from this ruling. We all hope that things will return to a safe level in the weeks ahead and with the vaccination programme currently underway it is hoped this this awful virus will eventually be defeated!

This must be the shortest contribution I have ever had to write, but clearly things have been extremely difficult for everyone in this village and elsewhere throughout the United Kingdom. However, it is important to recognise that our PCC members have all worked hard within the village to offer help and assistance to those who are infirm or alone. We recognise that many others within the village have also played their part in looking after friends and neighbours during these difficult times. We thank you all, and remember - keep safe and well!

Stuart Neale



 

In view of the PCC's desire to keep costs down covering water, electricity, gas, tower clock and organ servicing, building insurance [plus maintenance of internal and external parts of the Church, the Churchyard grass, Boundary trees and bushes], we have decided to go out to tender for all this necessary work to be carried out.

As a first step [but by no means the last] we shall be going
out to tender for the
Churchyard Grass Cutting

Please contact our Secretary Alison Sharples
[01271-882782] for a Tender Application Form.

The closing date for this work is 1st March 2021



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Artwork: Alvary Scott

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

At the time of writing it will come as no surprise to everyone that from Thursday 5th November [Bonfire Night!] this country will be under new lockdown restrictions. These restrictions will have a knock-on effect with regard to Church services. St. Peter's will be open on Sundays for Private prayer only, from 11.00 a.m.to 4.00 p.m.

NB: Please look out for posters detailing forthcoming services.

Our AGM was cancelled yet again, but to the relief of all our PCC members, this important meeting [limited to 6 people] was held in church and the following resignations were recorded. Doreen Prater, who has served on the PCC for over 20 years; Margaret Sowerby, our Treasurer, will remain in office to the end of this year; and myself, who as PCC Chairman, Churchwarden and Organist, has served here since the year 2000.

The situation which now presents itself is extremely worrying, for we desperately need a new Treasurer to take over from Margaret who has, with much help from her husband, served brilliantly over the last few years. Both Margaret and myself are willing to help any newcomers - come the new year - to guide them into their new roles. We meet 6/7 times during the year, so it's not a big ask for anyone who wishes to keep this church going in the years ahead, so important for this village with Services, Weddings, Baptisms, Funerals, Churchyard Burials and Internments, plus the holding of special events, some of which involve Berrynarbor School. Whatever your beliefs, religious or otherwise. it is vital that Berrynarbor Church remains at the centre of this beautiful village for the foreseeable future!

We are pleased to confirm that building repairs to the church roof and other areas requiring attention are well under way. NB: Scaffolding has been erected and we politely ask anyone who uses the church path takes heed of the warning signs in place.

We are extremely grateful to Karen Loftus and all those working in the Village Post Office and Community shop for assisting in the collection of food items for the Ilfracombe Food Bank, and of course our thanks to all those who have contributed to this worthy cause.

One very sad note must be the passing of June Marangone, who, as a volunteer, served in the shop and was a regular churchgoer. She will be remembered for her smile and welcoming manner. June, who had been ill for many months, died peacefully at home in late October. We shall all pray for her devoted husband Gerry and family during this very sad time. We continue to pray for our magnificent NHS, Ambulance Service and Police Force, and all those in our community who are unwell.

It was with some relief that our Service for Loved Ones was able to take place on Sunday 1st November. This short service is always extremely poignant in that parishioners have the opportunity to remember their loved ones in a special candlelit service which was presided over by our Priest in Charge, Rev. Peter Churcher. Maintaining all the safety restrictions imposed by the UK Government, this service, the first since March, was warmly welcomed by the local congregation.

Our Remembrance Service, like most of the services in North Devon and elsewhere, was cancelled following the new lockdown measures. However, it was decided that poppy wreaths should be laid on the War Memorial and so a modified service was held. Adam Stanbury laid a wreath on behalf of the Parish Council; his daughter Emily laid one on behalf of Berrynarbor School and Sue Neale laid one on behalf of our PCC. I read a short service and the two-minute silence was observed. We were joined by a very small number of villagers who arrived in time to pay their respects.

Finally, as retiring Chairman, I wish to express my deep appreciation to all PCC Members who have served and supported Berrynarbor Church over many years. Special thanks to all those Choir members from Berrynarbor, Combe Martin and Parracombe who have given so much pleasure to everyone in this village. I shall never forget all those wonderful musical moments, including us singing on two occasions with the Chivenor Military Wives Choir at special concerts held here in Berrynarbor!

Stuart Neale

4



Artwork: David Duncan

ST PETER'S CHURCH

Following the Government announcement that church buildings will be able to reopen for public worship from 4th July, it is hoped that services will commence in some form come September or October.

As mentioned in the August Newsletter, notices will be placed on the church gates and entrance porch to advise parishioners attending church, as well as visitors, to maintain social distancing and the sanitising of hands on entry and exit.

At the time of writing, the singing of hymns will not be permitted, and we can only hope that this will change in the near future.

There are no weddings planned for this year but funeral services are permitted with the limitation of 30 persons in church, but again, regretfully, no singing will be allowed until we receive the go ahead from the Diocese.

To just reflect on wedding services, we must sympathise greatly with couples who have had to re-arrange or delay what must be one of the most important days in their lives, not to mention the financial cost to them in having to cancel their wedding reception and honeymoon plans. Two such couples have had to cancel their wedding day service in Berrynarbor, which should have taken place earlier this year. How sad.

Our AGM, which was to have taken place at the end of March and was then re-scheduled to take place on the 21st September, has again, due to Government regulations, been postponed. Once we are able to hold this meeting, we'll keep you informed.

Following approval from the Archdeacon of Barnstaple for our Faculty application to carry out all the repair work on the church building, and at this time, we await scaffolding to be erected so that repairs to the roof, guttering and masonry can proceed. Western Steeplejacks have completed their work on the tower, and an upgraded heavy-duty earth wire has been connected to the tower's lightning conductor by James Electrics.

Please note, there will be special notices in place adjacent to the main cobbled path, and special cordoned security tape alongside to advise members of the public to keep well clear of any building/repair work in progress.

Our special prayers go to Margaret and Peter John Hiscox on the recent death of their husband and father, whose burial service was held in Berrynarbor churchyard on Wednesday 29th August. We continue to pray for our magnificent NHS, Ambulance Service and our Police Force, and all those in our community especially Carol Lucas and June Marangone who are unwell at this time.

Finally, we convey our thanks to Simon for keeping our churchyard, both old and new, in such pristine condition. We also thank Chris and his colleagues for the removal of a diseased holly tree, some branches of which were overhanging the roadway in Barton Lane. Chris had to obtain permission from the District Planning Office prior to the tree's removal, since trees in our churchyard are under a protection order.

Stuart Neale

7



Artwork: Steve Angold [Aged 10]

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Following the Government announcement that church buildings will be able to reopen for public worship from 4th July, it is hoped that in the weeks ahead we shall have more detailed information from the Diocese of Exeter as to how the shape of services will evolve for St. Peter's Berrynarbor, St Peter's Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's, Ilfracombe.

Obviously, there will be a continuation of social distancing and the sanitising of hands on entry and exit. and these arrangements will be made clear prior to entering the church for Sunday services. Notices will also be placed on the church gates and entrance porch for visitors wishing to enter the church building to ensure that social distancing and the sanitising of hands are maintained.

Weddings and funeral services will be able to proceed but with a limitation of 30 persons attending, but, as it stands at the moment, no singing of hymns will be permitted or the ringing of bells!

It is worth reflecting that the last three months have been an extraordinary time - the first period without public worship and sacraments in England for more than 800 years! There will be real joy as we come together again, even if at a physical distance.

We have now had approval from the Archdeacon of Barnstaple for our Faculty application to carry out all the repair work on the church building.

We continue to pray for our magnificent NHS, Ambulance Service and our Police Force. Our special prayers go to all those in our community who are unwell and recovering from treatment following their time in hospital, and those who are lonely and finding things difficult to manage, especially during this awful pandemic.

We also pray for the family of Mary Tucker BEM who sadly died following a short illness at her home in Lancashire. Mary was a wonderful lady who served our church and community with so much care and compassion during her time here in Berrynarbor.

Finally, a word of sympathy for our intrepid bellringers who are still unable to practice on Thursdays, and ringing for church services on Sundays. Due to the close proximity of ringers within the bell tower, they must be totally frustrated, and we can only hope that soon. all will be back to normal!

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

With Berrynarbor Church closed until further notice, there is not very much to say for this issue of the Newsletter! Not even our intrepid Bellringers are allowed to practice on Thursdays or ring on Sunday mornings!

We were hoping to receive the go ahead from the Diocese of Exeter for the necessary repair work to be carried out on the roof, masonry and cast-iron guttering, but as yet have not received the 'green' light. However, with builders' merchants closed and other suppliers in lockdown, we have to patiently wait for things to return to normal.

Apart from the few good people who donate using the gift aid scheme, we - like other churches throughout the land - do not receive any collection money and other donations due to the absence of church services during the lockdown period. However, there are many charities nationwide whose very existence rely on public donations year after year, not to mention vital support of businesses and their workers throughout the land who, at the end of the day, provide the life blood of this country's economy and existence!

We pray for our wonderful NHS and the huge difficulties that nursing staff face every day, and despite the tragic loss of some colleagues due to this awful virus, hope that they remain safe and well in the coming months ahead.

Our special prayers go to those in our community who are unwell and recovering from treatment following their time in hospital and those who are lonely and finding the lockdown difficult to manage, and hope that things return to normal and that everyone maintains all the social distancing and other measures recommended by the Government.

Our vicar, Rev. Peter Churcher, has arranged Service Videos on Sunday mornings which can be viewed on the following website: www.combetocombechurches.co.uk They start at 10.30 a.m. with a chat box for you to engage with!

Keep safe and well, God bless you all.

Stuart Neale

2



Artwork: Paul Swailes

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

With Berrynarbor Church closed until further notice, there is not very much to say for this issue of the Newsletter! Not even our intrepid Bellringers are allowed to practice on Thursdays or ring on Sunday mornings!

We were hoping to receive the go ahead from the Diocese of Exeter for the necessary repair work to be carried out on the roof, masonry and cast-iron guttering, but as yet have not received the 'green' light. However, with builders' merchants closed and other suppliers in lockdown, we have to patiently wait for things to return to normal.

Apart from the few good people who donate using the gift aid scheme, we - like other churches throughout the land - do not receive any collection money and other donations due to the absence of church services during the lockdown period. However, there are many charities nationwide whose very existence rely on public donations year after year, not to mention vital support of businesses and their workers throughout the land who, at the end of the day, provide the life blood of this country's economy and existence!

We pray for our wonderful NHS and the huge difficulties that nursing staff face every day, and despite the tragic loss of some colleagues due to this awful virus, hope that they remain safe and well in the coming months ahead.

Our special prayers go to those in our community who are unwell and recovering from treatment following their time in hospital and those who are lonely and finding the lockdown difficult to manage, and hope that things return to normal and that everyone maintains all the social distancing and other measures recommended by the Government.

Our vicar, Rev. Peter Churcher, has arranged Service Videos on Sunday mornings which can be viewed on the following website: www.combetocombechurches.co.uk They start at 10.30 a.m. with a chat box for you to engage with!

Keep safe and well, God bless you all.

Stuart Neale

2



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Unfortunately, my contribution for this issue will have be somewhat shortened. There has been a bereavement in Sue's family and in consequence this has meant that we have to travel up to Oxfordshire once or twice a week, a return journey of some 300 miles.

To return to Church matters, we are still awaiting approval from the Diocese to commence the major repair work to the church and hopefully this will, with a respite in the dreadful weather, commence in early spring.

There will, of course, have to be areas of scaffolding erected, but this will not impede access to the church or churchyard in any way whatsoever. Signs will, of course, be positioned near pathways for safety considerations.

Our AGM will be held in the Church vestry on Monday, 30th March commencing with the election of officers. Whilst readers of this Newsletter will not have been aware of this meeting, it is hoped that our AGM will have been well attended. It is of great importance that we welcome new blood onto our PCC since many of our existing members have served for 10 years or more and are not getting any younger!

There are 5 or 6 PCC meetings in a year - so it's not a great ask for new people to join and to share among our 8 members the task of running the Church and Churchyard for the benefit of the village.

As mentioned many times, we urgently need a new Treasurer to take over from Margaret Sowerby - who will be happy to spend time explaining this important role. Please contact our PCC Secretary, Alison Sharples, on 01271-882782.

We continue to pray for those who are unwell in this Parish and our special thoughts are with Viv Fryer and her family. her husband, Brian, having died recently following a lengthy illness. We also hope that both Pip Summers and Jill Jones continue to recover from recent hospital surgery.

Our services for April and Easter are:

Sunday, 19th April and Sunday, 26th April, follow the normal Church Services which are:


All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

  • 1st Sunday: Village Service
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

Stuart Neale

6



Artwork: Steve Angold [Aged 10]

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

We wish all in Berrynarbor a Happy and Healthy New Year!

As mentioned in the last newsletter, Rev. Bill Cole has now left the parish and we wish both Bill, and his wife Jenny, a very happy retirement in their native Cumbria.

The Remembrance Sunday Service was led by Rev. George Billington and was well attended. The Choir sang a beautiful rendition of Fields of Poppies, set to the music entitled Fields of Gold and composed by Sting. Congratulations to Karen Loftus who sang the fourth verse beautifully! We must not forget to express our sincere thanks to Ivan Clarke who played the Last Post and Reveille before and after the two-minute silence. Wreaths were laid by Adam Stanbury on behalf of Berrynarbor Parish Council, Sue Neale on behalf of St Peter's PCC and Fenella Boxall on behalf of Berrynarbor Primary School.

Our Christmas Carol Service was well attended and this year we welcomed Parracombe Choir to join forces with our Choir to sing traditional carols and three special solo carols, during the service which was led by Rev. Peter Churcher. There has always been a strong link with Parracombe going back to 2009 when, following a recruitment drive here in Berrynarbor, many Parracombe singers came over to sing with us at our Monday night practices. For many years now, our Choir travels over to Christ Church, Parracombe, to sing at their Christmas Carol Service in December. Following both services, mulled wine and mince pies were served for the congregations and choirs!

Christmas Eve Midnight Mass - actually commencing at 9.30pm - was led by Rev. Peter and complemented by the singing of seasonal carols, and on Christmas Day a short Family Service was held, again by Rev. Peter, but the attendance was very small, partly due to the fact that many villagers were visiting their respective families over the Christmas period. A special thank you from me to Graham Lucas for deputising on Christmas Day!

A specialist builder has been chosen for the repairs to the church roof and other areas, and the quotation has been sent to the Diocese of Exeter [Church Buildings/Architects Dept] for their approval. It is hoped that work can commence in the early spring.

As mentioned previously, we are in urgent need of a new Treasurer to take over from Margaret Sowerby, who will be stepping down from this role. If you would be willing to take on this post, please contact our PCC Secretary, Alison Sharples, on [01271] 882782.

We continue to pray for those who are unwell in this Parish, especially Viv and Brian Fryer, Carol Lucas and Jill Jones who broke her pelvis just before Christmas.

Our next PCC meeting will be held in late January when a range of forthcoming events will be discussed in detail. Our AGM will be held in late March - the date of which will be agreed at the PCC meeting.

Please note: there will be a Joint Service on Sunday, 29th March, which will be held at St. Peter's, Combe Martin. This service commences at 9.30 a.m.


All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

  • 1st Sunday: Village Service
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

Stuart Neale

4



Artwork: Alvary Scott

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

As stated in the October edition of the Newsletter, our House for Duty Priest, Rev. Bill Cole, will be retiring in early December. The Diocese will not be replacing Rev. Bill's position, which is much regretted, and as a consequence our new Priest in Charge, Rev. Peter Churcher, has set out a revised service schedule for all three Churches - Berrynarbor, Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's - which will take effect following Rev Bill's departure.

Whilst we shall still have the valued support of Rev. George Billington and some Lay Readers from Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's, it means that we shall probably have Rev. Peter just once a month. Quite clearly this is regrettable for all three churches - but Rev. Peter cannot possibly be at all three churches at any one time! Perhaps the Diocese will re-appraise the situation we are all facing and a House for Duty Priest will be reinstated!

Our Harvest Supper was a great success and although the numbers were marginally down on last year, everyone had an enjoyable evening. As always, a great many thanks and appreciation must go to the ladies for supplying and arranging the excellent buffet for the evening, rounded off with an excellent quiz which was won by the Bellringers Table! A total of £150 was raised on this successful evening, and a cheque for this amount was sent to the Calvert Trust at Kentisbury, who cater for those with disabilities.

We must also convey our thanks to all those parishioners who gave generously to our Food Bank collection - which was taken, with Berrynarbor School's contribution, to the Salvation Army's Food Bank in Ilfracombe.

With regard to the repairs to the Church Roof and other areas, we shall be selecting a builder in the near future which will then be passed to the Diocese of Exeter, Church Buildings/Architects Dept., for ratification, and hope that the necessary work can get under way as quickly as possible.

As mentioned before in the Newsletter, we urgently need a new Treasurer to take over from Margaret Sowerby, who will be stepping down from this role. For anyone who would be willing to take on this position please contact our PCC Secretary, Alison Sharples, on 01271-882782.

Berrynarbor Choir continues under the direction of Graham Lucas, and Choir practice is held on Monday evenings commencing at 7.30pm. The Choir were invited to perform at Woolhanger Manor in their splendid octagonal Music Room where we supported North Devon Hospice on Sunday 3rd November. There is a superb pipe organ and grand piano in the music room and the I had the pleasure of playing both instruments during the concert. There were craft stalls and refreshments in the music room and adjoining room and we understand that much money was raised for such a worthy cause.

Our annual Service for Loved Ones with the lighting of candles in the church was also held on Sunday 3rd November led by Rev. Peter. We were grateful to organist Ian Lovegrove for deputising for me on this occasion.

The Choir has been asked to perform once again at a special afternoon Tea on Saturday 7th December in support of Berry in Bloom.

We look forward to our Annual Carol Service in December which attracts a congregation in excess of 100, including regular parishioners, parents and visitors from afar. The service will be on Thursday, 12th December commencing at 6.30 p.m. Mulled wine and mince pies and soft drinks and sweets for the children, will be served following the service.

In addition to the above, our Christmas Eve Service will be Holy Communion with Carols, commencing at 9.30 p.m., and our Christmas Day Service - a short Family service - will commence at 11.00 a.m. We look forward to welcoming parishioners from Combe Martin and visitors for both services at this special time.

We continue to pray for those who are unwell in this Parish, especially Viv and Brian Fryer and Carol Lucas

Our service pattern for November and December is as follows:


All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

  • 1st Sunday: Village Service
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

There will be a Joint Service on Sunday 29th December, 10.30 a.m. at Pip & Jim's, Ilfracombe.

Stuart Neale

6



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Our new Priest in Charge, .Rev. Peter Churcher, is settling in nicely here in Berrynarbor and of course at St. Peter's, Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's in Ilfracombe. It's such a relief that we have someone who is extremely approachable and 'at the helm' at last!

We must not forget, however, the wonderful support we have had over several years from Rev. George Billington and Rev. Bill Cole. The only sad news is that Bill will be retiring in December to be near his family, having served his 3-year contract as House for Duty Priest. We wish him and his wife Jenny a most happy retirement together.

The PCC have received a very comprehensive quotation from a specialist building/conservation company with regard to repairs to our church and we have now received a second quotation from a specialist company, a requirement stipulated by the Diocese of Exeter. We shall be studying all the details relating to costings/time frame etc., at a special meeting of our PCC.

As some of you may have noticed, we experienced a major structural problem with three large commemorative headstones adjacent to the cobble path leading to the Church Porch. These headstones, for several decades, were completely covered with thick ivy and nobody actually realised what was behind until the ivy died, revealing huge headstones dating back to the early 1800's! Anyway, something had to be done to save the headstones from imminent collapse and so we instructed Kevin Brooks to literally rebuild the brick supports and install special clamp brackets to permanently secure the headstones, one of which had a hairline fracture from top to bottom! Kevin has done a really superb job and we are all very grateful to him.

As mentioned in the last edition of the Newsletter, we urgently need a new Treasurer to take over from Margaret Sowerby, who will be stepping down from this role. For anyone who would be willing to take on this responsible position, please contact our PCC Secretary, Alison Sharples on 01271-882782.

Berrynarbor Choir continues under the direction of Graham Lucas, and Choir practice is held on Monday evenings commencing at 7.30 p.m. The Choir were invited to sing at a fund-raising event for Berry in Bloom

in August, to be held at the Old Rectory, but due to the weather we had to adjourn to the Manor Hall and perform a selection of songs, with audience participation in the famous Hippopotamus Song! So successful was the event that we are delighted to have been invited back to sing Christmas songs at a special afternoon tea event to be held in the Manor Hall on Saturday 7th December.

Our Remembrance Service will be held on Sunday 10th November commencing at 10.45am in Church, followed by the Roll Call of Servicemen who gave their lives, and the traditional Silence at 11 o'clock by the War Memorial. We always look forward to a large attendance for this special annual service. We also look forward to Berrynarbor School's input with commemorative drawings, pictures and special poems from the schoolchildren.

We continue to pray for those who are unwell in this Parish, especially Viv and Brian Fryer and Carol Lucas.

Come October, we shall be reverting back to our service pattern as follows:


All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

  • 1st Sunday: Village Service
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Following his Installation and a special Joint Service on the 19th May, attended by all three churches, our new Priest in Charge, Rev. Peter Churcher, is settling in nicely and on Sunday 26th May he visited St. Peter's for his first service here in Berrynarbor. We especially welcomed his wife Josie and their children Sophie, Faith, Izzi and Xander - and not forgetting Harvey the dog!

Our Annual Gift Day was held on Wednesday 19th June at the Church Lych Gate, and £662.97 was raised. We are extremely grateful to all those villagers and visitors for their most generous donations and they can rest assured that the money received will be wisely spent on the maintenance of the Church. One kind lady, who lives in Hampshire, has been coming on holiday to Berrynarbor with her husband for the last 50 years made a very generous donation, and it was interesting to learn that the same annual tradition of Gift Day was held in their village on behalf of their Church.

The PCC have now received a very comprehensive quotation from a specialist building/conservation company with regard to repairs to St. Peter's, but we are still waiting for a second quotation from another specialist company - a requirement stipulated by the Diocese of Exeter. It would seem that scaffolding will be in abundance - particularly over the roof where the lead gullies and their adjacent roof tiles will have to be removed. Protection from a special roof canopy will be erected to prevent rain, birds and bats from entering the building!

As mentioned in the last edition of the Newsletter, we urgently need a new Treasurer to take over from Margaret Sowerby, who will be stepping down from this role. If anyone would be willing to take on this responsible position, please contact our PCC Secretary, Alison Sharples, on [01271] 882782.

Simon, our new gardener, is doing a grand job keeping the churchyard and associated areas in excellent condition and we are also grateful to tree specialist Chris Townsend and his team for attending to the trees that form the perimeter, together with other trees and bushes within the churchyard.

Berrynarbor Choir continues under the direction of Graham Lucas, and Choir practice is on Monday evenings commencing at 7.30 p.m. The Choir have been invited to sing at a special event in August held at the Old Rectory in Berrynarbor, the date and time of which will be advertised locally in the village and at the shop and post office.

Our Bellringers rang in a recent competition at Morchard Bishop, Down St. Mary and Bow churches, one after the other! The bells were all different weights to test their skills as ringers, and in all of them they rang 'raised' 'rang' and 'lowered', which some of them had never experienced before. A great learning curve for all our team who will work to improve for next year's competition!

Our dedicated flower ladies welcome Joan Lupton to their arranging team, and if anyone else would be interested in helping please contact Sue Neale on 883893.

We continue to pray for all those who are unwell in this Parish, especially Carol, Viv and Brian, and Jill.

PLEASE NOTE: there will be a slight change to the Service pattern for the next couple of months, which will be as follows;


All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m.

  • 1st Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Village Service
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

There will be a Joint Service held on Sunday 29th September at Berrynarbor, commencing at 11.00 a.m.

Stuart Neale

5



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

A large congregation from the churches of Berrynarbor, Pip & Jim's and Combe Martin, together with civic leaders, gathered in Pip & Jim's Church on Monday 13th May for the Installation of Rev Peter Churcher, who will be our new Priest in Charge. The joyful service was led by the Bishop of Exeter, The Right Reverend Robert Atwell, together with Archdeacon Rev. Dr. Mark Butchers and many local clergy.

At long last, following another extended interregnum, we can look forward to welcoming Rev. Peter to our church in the very near future.

Following this wonderful service, a superb buffet was ready to welcome the whole congregation in the Church Hall. A sincere thank you to the ladies from all three churches for preparing the refreshments.

A special Joint Service to welcome and meet Reverend Peter and his family was also held at Pip & Jim's on Sunday 19th May. The service was followed by a bring-and-share lunch which, again in the church hall opposite.

Our well-attended Easter Sunday Service was led by Rev. George Billington. Berrynarbor Choir sang the beautiful negro spiritual Steal Away, and the joyful service concluded with Rev. George handing out chocolate crème eggs to all the congregation! Yum, Yum!

Our Annual Gift Day will be held on Wednesday, 19th June at the church lych gate, and it is hoped that once again Berrynarbor School will be involved during the day. We are not quite sure what fun activity will be arranged since our new Vicar, Peter Churcher, may wish to be involved with the School in some way and we shall keep everyone informed nearer the time.

The PCC have started the ball rolling with regard to repairs to the church by obtaining quotations from specialist building/conservation companies, with the necessary approval of the Diocese of Exeter's Building and Architectural Department, and will keep everyone posted as to the outcome. In the fullness of time there will be the necessary erection of scaffolding around the perimeter of the church with safety for building workers and the public very much in mind.

At our recent AGM, our PCC Treasurer Margaret Sowerby stood down, and so we urgently need a replacement to join us as soon as possible. Margaret will be happy to spend time necessary to explain the workings of the Treasurer's role. Margaret, together with valued help from her husband Roger, has modernised much of the recording and filing of data, which will be invaluable to the new applicant. The PCC wish to thank Margaret and Roger for their hard work and commitment over the last few years.

Berrynarbor Choir continues under the direction of Graham Lucas, and Choir practice is on Monday evenings commencing at 7.30 p.m. We welcome anyone who enjoys singing to come along and join us!

We continue to pray for those who are unwell in this Parish. especially Carol Lucas, Viv and Brian Fryer and Jill Massey.

It is with much regret that the Friendship Lunch, held at The Globe on the last Wednesday of the month, is to come to an end. For some time now the numbers attending this lunch have fallen to such a low level that it is no longer sustainable. We wish to thank Jill McCrae for helping to organise this happy get-together over so many years.



All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

  • 1st Sunday: Village Service
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

Stuart Neale

5



ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Following his interview on Thursday 3rd January, we are delighted to announce that Rev. Peter Churcher has been appointed as Priest in Charge to serve St. Peter's Berrynarbor, St. Peter's Combe Martin together with Pip & Jim's, Ilfracombe. Rev. Peter comes from a church in West Wickham, Kent, and will be arriving in North Devon with his wife and family this coming April.

His formal Installation will take place on Monday, 13th May at a special service held at Pip & Jim's Church, Ilfracombe. commencing at 7.00 p.m. All are welcome to attend this service headed by The Right Reverend Robert Atwell, Bishop of Exeter. Refreshments will be served following the Service in the Church Hall opposite.

Following Rev. Peter's Installation, there will be a special Joint Service, also held at Pip & Jim's, on Sunday, 19th May, commencing at 10.30 a.m., so that Rev. Peter will have a better chance to meet all of us personally. The service will be followed by a bring-and-share lunch which will be served in their Church Hall.

Of course, we all look forward to his first service here in Berrynarbor - possibly in late May or early June.

Berrynarbor Choir is practising hard under the direction of Graham Lucas, and it is hoped that they'll give a music concert, combined with our excellent School Choir, in the very near future. Choir practice is on Monday evenings commencing at 7.30 p.m. and we have attracted some new members who enjoy a good singalong!

Having retired as Organist, I shall, however, be playing for the Easter Services, but we still look forward to welcoming someone who can permanently take over this role. As mentioned before, please contact me, Stuart Neale, on [01271] 883893 if you wish to take on this role or if you know of someone who may wish to come forward to help.

The Joint Service scheduled to be at Pip and Jim's on the 31st March has been cancelled and Mothering Sunday, on that day, will be celebrated here at St. Peter's.

Easter follows with:

We hope to welcome as many people as possible to all these services, especially the children with their mothers and fathers.

We continue to pray for those who are unwell in this Parish, especially Carol Lucas and Viv and Brian Fryer.

Last, but not least - The Friendship Lunch will be held on the last Wednesday of the month in the Globe Pub at 12.30pm.


All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

  • 1st Sunday: Village Service
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

Stuart Neale

7



Artwork: Paul Swailes

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

The post for a Priest in Charge has been re-advertised and a new candidate was interviewed on Thursday 3rd of January for the position to serve St. Peter's Berrynarbor, St. Peter's Combe Martin together with Pip & Jim's, Ilfracombe. We are currently waiting to hear if the candidate was successful and will notify everyone in the April edition of the Newsletter as to the outcome.

Our Christmas Carol Service on Wednesday 19th December was, as usual, very well attended, and how well the young children sang at the earlier Service and also at the later Service commencing at 6.30 p.m. Both School and Berrynarbor Choirs sang special songs and carols, and mulled wine and mince pies, plus other refreshments for the children, rounded off the evening in fine style! We thank Rev. Bill Cole for taking this special service.

Our Christmas Eve Service at 9.30 p.m. welcomed many parishioners from both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin, together with visitors - some of whom had travelled long journeys to attend this special service which was conducted by Rev. George Billington. There was also a good attendance for the short Family Service on Christmas Day, and many thanks to Graham Lucas who deputised for me on this occasion.

How nice it was to see so many attend from Pip and Jim's Ilfracombe, and St. Peter's Combe Martin at our Joint Service held here in Berrynarbor at the end of December, with Revs. Bill and George taking the service.

Once again, we are still hoping that someone will come forward to fill the post of Organist at St. Peter's - if only on a temporary basis. Music is an essential part of the Church Service and if you know of someone who could help us out then we would be most grateful. Please contact me, Stuart on 883893 for details.

Still on the subject of music, for those who are interested in joining our Choir please contact Graham Lucas on 01271-883847 - or just come along to our Monday evening Choir practice in the church at 7.30 p.m. and enjoy a sing-along!

Church Services for February are as follows:


All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

  • 1st Sunday: Village Service
  • 2nd Sunday: Holy Communion
  • 3rd Sunday: Songs of Praise
  • 4th Sunday: Holy Communion

N.B. There will be a Joint Service on Sunday, 31st March at Pip and Jim's, Ilfracombe, commencing at 10.30 a.m.


In view of the PCC's desire to keep costs down covering water, electricity, gas, tower clock and organ servicing, building insurance [plus maintenance of internal and external parts of the Church, the Churchyard grass, Boundary trees and bushes], we have decided to go out to tender for all this necessary work to be carried out.

As a first step [but by no means the last] we will be going out to tender for the Churchyard Grass Cutting

Please contact our Secretary Alison Sharples [01271-882782] for a Tender Application Form.

The closing date for this work is 1st March 2019


Our AGM will be held on Tuesday 26th March in the Church Vestry at 1.45 p.m. We welcome all parishioners to attend this important meeting.

As many of you will know, Judie Weedon became unwell in early January, and we send our prayers and good wishes for a speedy recovery following her stay in hospital. We also pray for those who are unwell in this Parish - especially Carol Lucas, Viv and Brian Fryer and also Pip Summers who is recovering from a knee replacement.

Last, but not least - The Friendship Lunch will be held on the last Wednesday of the month in The Globe Pub at 12.30 p.m.

Stuart Neale


4



Artwork: Steve Angold [Aged 10]

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Things have moved on a pace from the October edition of the Berrynarbor Newsletter and we have received applications from two candidates for the position of Priest in Charge to serve St. Peter's Berrynarbor, St. Peter's Combe Martin, together with Pip & Jim's, Ilfracombe.

Following their planned visit to all parishes on the 18th October, formal interviews were held on the following day at a neutral venue. Two representatives from each church were allowed to ask questions to the two candidates, along with contributions from the Bishop of Crediton, the Archdeacon of Barnstaple and the Rev John Fisher. Unfortunately, neither of the two candidates was chosen and the post will be re-advertised.

Our Harvest Festival Service was well supported, as was the Harvest Supper. Our grateful thanks must go to our ladies who provided an excellent buffet, the evening rounding off with a fun quiz. The amount raised from the Harvest Service collection and ticket sales from the Supper - after deducting expenses - was £157.00. Following PCC agreement, this was rounded up to £200 which was donated to the Indonesian Disaster Fund.

At this point we must convey our grateful thanks to all who contributed food, in the form of tins, cereals, pasta, biscuits, etc., for the needy, and with a superb effort from Berrynarbor Schoolchildren and parents. All this food was taken to the Ilfracombe Food Bank which is administered by the Salvation Army from their Hall in Ilfracombe. Photographs were taken to record the event and it is hoped that the North Devon Journal will feature this in a future edition. Well done to everyone!

The Remembrance Sunday Service was very well attended and it was particularly poignant that Armistice Day fell on the 11th of the 11th. Rev. George Billington led the service and at the War Memorial for the two minute silence. Ivan Clarke played the Last Post and Reveille on his bugle. How well he played on this tranquil, sunlit, morning, and there was a touching moment when his son, Ben - a pilot in the RAF - stepped forward to place a poppy wreath on behalf of his Squadron. Clare White, representing the Parish Council, read the Lesson and the Choir sang You Raise me Up - the words conveying both hope and calm. The collection of £200 will be donated to The Royal British Legion.

Christmas is just around the corner and once again we look forward to a full church on Wednesday, 19th December, for our annual Carol Service. The little ones will once again be performing their Nativity Play with songs and carols from 5.45 p.m., the main service commencing promptly at 6.30 p.m.

We look forward to additional contributions from the older children, under the direction of Christina Barrow, plus the Berrynarbor Choir under the direction of Graham Lucas.

We have not received any formal request to take on the position of Organist, and can only hope that someone comes forward to take on this important role. Once again, please contact me, Stuart Neale, on 01271-883893 if you, or you know of someone who is willing to help us out, even on a part time basis!

For those interested in joining our Choir, please contact Graham Lucas on 01271-883847, or just come along to our Monday evening Choir practice in the church at 7.30 p.m. and enjoy a sing-along!

Following our search for the position of PCC Secretary, temporarily undertaken by Sue Neale, we are very pleased to announce that Alison Sharples will take on this important role come the New Year.

As we approach Christmas, we think and pray for those who are unwell in our parish.

December Church Services will be as follows:

Please Note: There will be no Friendship Lunch in December

All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

Friendship Lunch will be held on the last Wednesday of the month at The Globe at 12.30 p.m.

Finally, from everyone at St. Peter's Church, we send our very best wishes to you all for a very Happy Christmas and Peaceful New Year.

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Following on from the August edition of the Berrynarbor Newsletter, the Parish Profile has now been approved by the Archdeacon and advertising will have commenced in September. So, we now have to wait for candidates to come forward and hope that this will be sooner rather than later. Meanwhile we are very grateful to our two faithful, Rev. Bill Cole and George Billington with occasional assistance from Pip & Jim's retired clergy and their lay readers for conducting services here in Berrynarbor.

As you know, I retired from playing the organ for church services at the end of July, but with help from a selection of pre-recorded hymns on six CD's, services can at least be conducted to the sound of a church organ. The CD's were originally used at St. Peters Church in Combe Martin, but following an update of their sound equipment, their PCC very kindly passed these CD's over to us here in Berrynarbor. We are, of course, extremely grateful for this gesture; nevertheless, we in Berrynarbor continue to hope that the position of Organist will be filled as soon as possible.

Whilst on the subject of recruitment, we should welcome anyone who would be prepared to take on the position of PCC Secretary, currently undertaken by Sue Neale. This is purely a temporary position for Sue, since she is also heavily involved with Ilfracombe Flower Club and is currently Chairman, Secretary and goodness knows what else, and so we cannot emphasise enough our need for the secretarial post to be filled. There must be someone out there who can come to our rescue with only 6 meetings a year to attend! Please help!!

We welcome everyone to our Harvest Service on Sunday, 7th October and of course our Harvest Supper on Wednesday 10th October, 6.30 for 7.00 p.m. in the Manor Hall. Ticket price remains unchanged at £6.00 for a really super buffet meal and a complimentary glass of wine/beer/cider. Please remember to bring your own knife, fork and spoon on the evening.

On the same subject of Harvest, we should invite all villagers to think about those folk not so well off at this time and to contribute either tins/packets/pasta/rice/cereals or whatever for our annual gift to the Ilfracombe Food Bank, organised/hosted by the Salvation Army in Ilfracombe. There will be a large container placed next to the font at the rear of the Church from 1st October for people wishing to donate to this worthy cause!

Remembrance Sunday will be held on Sunday 11th November commencing at 10.45 a.m., followed by the short act of Remembrance at 11.00 a.m. alongside the village War Memorial in the churchyard. We encourage all villagers to attend this important annual service of remembrance. Berrynarbor School will once again be paying their respects by exhibiting wonderful poems and special commemorative pictures for all to read and view at the end of the service.

We are especially grateful to Graham Lucas for taking on the running of the Berrynarbor Choir, and hope to see any newcomers who may wish to join our fabulous Choir. As usual, choir practice is on Monday evenings commencing at 7.30pm.

All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

The Friendship Lunch will be held on the last Wednesday of the month in The Globe Pub at 12.30 p.m.


A Personal Message

I wish to thank all those who contributed gifts and the wonderful signed card following my last Church Service on Sunday 29th July. I was extremely moved and will always cherish the services for which I have played covering so many years. Thank you to everyone for your kind words and appreciation.

As if that were not enough, I was completely hoodwinked into a surprise party at John and Fenella's as a thank you for running the Berrynarbor Choir since 2000. Almost the whole Choir were there and certainly a few tears were shed from yours truly. Thank you, John and Fenella, for hosting this wonderful evening which I shall never forget.

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Now that we are in a period of interregnum, we have submitted our Parish Profile, together with the three churches' [ourselves, Combe Martin and Pip & Jim's] personal profile requirements to the Archdeacon of Barnstaple for perusal. These will be passed to the Diocese of Exeter for final approval so that advertising for a new Vicar can commence. As mentioned in the June edition, we are fortunate to have the full support of Reverends Bill Cole and George Billington during this period.

Without going into minute detail, our PCC have to continue to manage the books, so to speak, and much credit goes to our Treasurer, Margaret Sowerby, with considerable support from husband Roger, for keeping our heads above water. Our monthly expenses - which include a considerable sum to the Diocese of Exeter - are in the region of £1,000, which is a huge amount of money set against a relatively small amount of incoming revenue! So, we are indeed very grateful to the people of Berrynarbor who supported our annual Gift Day, held on the 27th June, which raised £620. To make this day even more important, Sue Neale organised a super Treasure Hunt inside the Church and in the surrounding Churchyard for the pupils of Berrynarbor School to enjoy! The day was very hot but a great time was had by all, with prizes for all who took part. A special thank you to the teachers on duty who kept the children on track throughout the morning.

One of the questions set for inside the church was, 'How much does the Marriage Service Fee cost?' The Fee is of course £441.00. However, when asked, one of the children came up with the answer in a very loud voice, "£441,000". Hilarious! Still, we can all make mistakes and putting the decimal in the wrong place didn't really matter one jot in this instance! Well done to all the youngsters.

The Original Chivenor Military Wives Choir gave a concert in our Church on Friday 6th July and what a wonderful event this was! They were supported by Berrynarbor and School Choirs during the programme, and a finale performed by all three Choirs brought a standing ovation from the 200 audience. The Military Wives were simply wonderful and there were six ladies and husbands who came all the way from Oxford to enjoy the concert - how about that!

It was sad to learn of the death of Rosemary Gaydon who lived in Barton Lane with her late husband Bernard for many years, before moving to Combe Martin several years ago. Rosemary was a really lovely lady, and those who knew her will be saddened by her passing. Both Rosemary and Bernard were members of the Russian Orthodox faith and, following permission from the Bishop of Exeter, a Russian Orthodox service was held for the very first time in Berrynarbor Church followed by her burial in the grave of her late husband.

We are still hoping for a replacement Organist to come forward as well as someone to take on the role of Secretary following Jean Pell's departure from the village. Please come forward to at least enquire about this position for it is not a huge amount of work for someone who is organised.

Just a reminder about the Friendship Lunch which is held on the last Wednesday of the month in The Globe commencing at 12.30pm.

All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:


ORGANIST REQUIRED

As readers and members of the church are aware, I shall have retired as Organist by the time you read this newsletter and I sincerely hope that someone has or will have, responded to the plea for someone to come forward to take over this position and that of Choirmaster for St. Peter's.

The post obviously entails playing the organ as well as organising the music and, of course, running the Choir on a weekly basis.

I studied piano at College, many years ago, before taking on the organ. Although a church organ is obviously different to a piano, converting to the organ need not be a huge challenge, so it does not matter if you are a pianist and might like to come forward.

I should be more than happy to help familiarise anyone who wishes to take over this role and to help and advise on the structure of some of the church services.

If you think you might be interested in taking on this role, I should be very happy to discuss the position with you, so please contact me on 01271-883893.

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

At the end of May we shall be saying our goodbyes to Canon Michael Rogers who is retiring after many years in the Ministry of the Church. As Priest in Charge for Pip and Jim's Ilfracombe, Combe Martin and Berrynarbor Churches, we send our best wishes to him and his wife, Alison, for a happy retirement in their home near North Molton.

In June, the PCC's from Pip & Jim's, Combe Martin and Berrynarbor Churches will prepare a new Parish Profile Document so that advertising for Michael's replacement can be speedily set in motion. We shall, of course, continue to work closely with our House for Duty priest, Rev. Bill Cole, during the interim, and look forward to his visits to Berrynarbor to take some of our church services, with, no doubt, strong support from Rev. George Billington who lives here in the village.

Our Annual Gift Day will be held on Wednesday 27th June at the Church Lych Gate, and this year we'll be inviting Berrynarbor School into the churchyard for a special treasure hunt! If the weather is unfavourable we'll hold this event inside the church.

As many of you will know, we shall be welcoming the Original Chivenor Military Wives Choir for a super Concert in Berrynarbor Church on Friday 6th July at 7.30pm. Many of you will remember their fabulous Concert in 2016, and once again Berrynarbor and School Choirs will be featuring in both halves of the Concert. Tickets are available from Berrynarbor Shop and Post Office priced at £15 to include refreshments. Don't miss this very special evening!

As mentioned in the April edition of the Berrynarbor Newsletter, I shall be retiring from playing the organ for church services at the end of July. As yet, no requests to take on this role have been received, so please feel free to contact me on 01271 883893 if you are interested. It does not matter if you have not played an organ before but perhaps can play the piano, and I should be more than happy to help and advise on 'converting' to the church organ and the service structure.

Berrynarbor PCC are currently looking for a Secretary following the departure of Jean Pell. This is an important but not demanding role which needs to be filled as soon as possible. Please contact Sue or myself on 01271 883893 for details.

Going back to the special concert given by the Exmoor Carolers in December, we forgot to mention that £482 was raised from this event, the full amount being donated to the Shelter Box Charity.

Whilst on the subject of donations, we were pleased to donate £125 to the Devon Air Ambulance, raised from our joint service held here with Combe Martin and Ilfracombe churches on Sunday 29th April. These helicopters and expert crews have to date flown 25,627 missions, which is absolutely wonderful!

Ron Toms' ashes were interred in the new churchyard at the end of April. The short service, attended by Ron's daughter Sheila and her husband Tony, together with villagers in support, was conducted by Rev'd. Michael Rogers on what was fittingly a bright, sunny day!

All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Well the New Year is under way and one of the immediate challenges facing the PCC is the need to obtain grants for the church roof and associated masonry repair work to be carried out. This has been a very long process from the preparation of Grant Requests which have to be presented in the most detailed format complete with a Parish Profile, project costings, building quotes and goodness knows what else - all to focus on not only Church Charities but many other major business organisations throughout the land. The response from most of these charities has been painfully slow - with some organisations unable to respond with a decision. in some cases, between 6 and 9 months. However, having had to prepare all of the above, I shall continue to persevere - with hopefully some light at the end of the tunnel.

The PCC will continue its fund-raising efforts into 2018 and these will be announced as the year progresses.

During the recent gales in this region, we have had a couple of large branches break off from trees, one of which fell into the road just short of the church steps. Thank goodness nobody was hurt and there was no damage to vehicles passing or parked! It took four people to lift this particular branch, which has now been cut up. Quite clearly, we cannot, nor anyone else, predict when a branch might shear off any tree, but we have taken immediate steps to have the trees immediately behind the churchyard wall and railings thoroughly inspected, and then trimmed accordingly to make things as safe as possible. Our Insurance Company has been advised as to the event described above, and they are happy for us to take these precautionary steps.

At our PCC meeting in January, I announced that I shall be retiring from playing the organ for Church Services at the end of July this year. Having played nearly 1,400 services since 1998, including many services at St. Peter's at Combe Martin, the time has come to retire! So, we shall need an organist to take over from August onwards. Please contact me on 01271-883893 if you are interested.

A special 3-tier candle stand for anyone who wishes to light a candle to remember a relative or someone who is perhaps ill at home or in hospital, has kindly been provided by Sue Neale. It stands adjacent to the font at the rear of the Church. There have been many requests from parishioners and visitors to have such a stand and it is hoped that this will be well received by everyone.

We should like to thank our Secretary, Jean Pell, for her hard work over the last few years and wish Jean and her husband Peter a happy move to be near their family in Westbury. We shall, therefore, be needing a new Secretary at the earliest opportunity. If you would like to take on this position, please speak to anyone on the PCC or telephone Sue or me on 883893.

Easter is upon us and Good Friday, 30th March, will be remembered with an Hour of Devotion Service commencing at 2.00 p.m. Easter Sunday will be celebrated on the 1st April with the Service commencing at 11.00 a.m. when we hope that Berrynarbor School may be involved and we look forward to seeing you all on this special day.

We remember the sad passing of Hedy Belka in February and send our sincere condolences to her family. Hedy, who was so kind and helpful and came from Austria many years ago with her husband Josef, was one of our congregation for many years before entering a care home in Barnstaple. Hedy, or Hedwig which was her Austrian name, will be remembered with great fondness and her ashes will be laid alongside her husband Josef and their son in Berrynarbor Churchyard.

All Church Services commence at 11.00 a.m. and are as follows:

Please note that there will be a Joint Service at Berrynarbor on Sunday, 29th April. at 11.00 a.m.

Stuart Neale

2



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Following the announcement of Michael Bowden's death, his funeral in St. Peter's Church on Friday 3rd November was attended by no less than 270 people. The service was led by Rev. George Billington which, despite the sadness, was most uplifting and a real tribute to Micky, as he was widely known!Unfortunately, Lorna was not well enough to attend but she must feel proud that so many people from far and wide came to remember him. The congregation was very generous in supporting the Devon Air Ambulance and St. Peter's Church, two organisations which were very special to Michael's heart.

A special joint service was held at St. Peter's Church, Combe Martin, on Sunday 26th November led by Rev. John Roles.This service was especially important in that we welcomed congregations from Ilfracombe Parish Church, Bittadon, Woolacombe, Mortehoe and Lee, which was followed by refreshments served in Combe Martin Church Hall.

It is, however, with great sadness that Rev. Michael Rogers who came to Combe Martin and Berrynarbor churches 18 months ago, has recently announced his retirement from May 2018. This now means that we, on Berrynarbor PCC, and including Pip and Jim's and Combe Martin, will be facing a second interregnum period come May of this year. We sincerely hope that the powers that be will find a welcome replacement with the utmost speed and not the excessive delay that was experienced during the last interregnum!We are, of course, extremely fortunate and grateful to have Reverends Bill Cole and George Billington to help us with church services when they can, but both are retired and they need to have spare time like everyone else.

A special thank you to Graham Lucas for leading the Monday morning School Assembly. His Bible stories are always interesting and easy to understand and enthusiastically re-enacted by the children!

The Christmas lights [by courtesy of the Parish Council] were already in place for a superb Concert given by the exmoor Carolers, who entertained an audience of over 80 in our church on Sunday, 10th December, and a lively rendition of special Christmas carols, including hand bells, and with vocal support from all, made for a fantastic evening's entertainment!Mulled wine, mince pies and other nibbles were served during the interval and many thanks to the ladies who organised this part of the evening.

Berrynarbor Primary School had their special Village Walkabout on Wednesday,13th December, to sing Christmas carols to residents within the village, ending up at Lee Lodge to give the residents there some special Christmas cheer!

Whilst on the subject of Berrynarbor School, those parishioners who attended the Senior Dudes' Christmas Dinner in the Manor Hall give a wholehearted thank you for the superb evening's meal and entertainment.Well done to all the children and to their supporting staff!

Our Christmas Carol Service, including the very young ones on early at 5.45pm, was a great success with a church filled with people, and it was uplifting to hear both Berrynarbor and School Choirs in full voice during this joyful service.Many thanks to Sue Neale and her willing team in serving mulled wine and mince pies, as well as drinks and sweets for the youngsters following the service.

Our Christmas eve [Midnight Mass] service was very well attended and how nice to welcome visitors from far and wide to our beautiful church and village! Our Christmas Day Family Service was led by Celia Withers from Combe Martin, and a big thank you to Graham Lucas who deputised on the organ for me on this occasion.

A joint service for the Coast and Combe team was held on 31st December at Pip and Jim's, Ilfracombe, with no service at Berrynarbor or Combe Martin on New Year's eve.

Church services for the New Year will follow the same pattern as for 2017.

Finally, a very special thank you to our Bellringers for ringing superbly for all services throughout 2017, and to Church Caretakers, Betty and Kevin Brooks for tending the church on a regular basis.

A Happy and peaceful New Year to you!

Stuart Neale

4



Artwork: Alvary Scott

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

A special joint service with Combe Martin was held at St. Peter's on 5th November and for a pleasant change, Maureen Richards on clarinet, Jenny Cole playing guitar and yours truly on keyboard, presented the hymns in a pleasant new light! Rev. Bill Cole took the service which was attended by a good-sized congregation.

Our Antiques Fair regretfully had to be cancelled with only a few tickets being sold.Our Guest Valuer, who was coming up from Exeter, has kindly offered his services in 2018 when we hope to hold this event in the summer.

Our Harvest Supper was attended by over 40 people and everyone enjoyed themselves with a superb buffet provided by the ladies, who are to be congratulated once again. The evening was rounded off with a music and general knowledge quiz, enjoyed by all! After expenses we made a profit of £92 - which will be sent to the Shelter Box charity.A generous collection of tinned food, fruit and vegetables was donated and this will be given to the Food Bank in Ilfracombe to help those in need.

We mourn the passing of Michael Bowden who had been poorly for some considerable time and we send our sincere condolences to his wife Lorna and all the family. Michael was Captain of the Bellringers at St. Peter's for many years and not only was he a great character, but an inspiration to the whole team!He will be greatly missed by all the Bellringers and Parishioners here in Berrynarbor.

Remembrance Sunday will have passed by the time this article is read and we are hoping that once again a good-sized congregation will attend this very important service. The Choir will have sung the beautiful song Bring Him Home from Les Miserables, the words of which are so appropriate for remembering not just those who did not return from these two major conflicts, but to those who were badly injured surviving to be reunited with their families.

There will have been a special Holy Communion service held at St. Peter's Church, Combe Martin, on Sunday 26th November when we shall have welcomed parishioners from the whole 'Mission Community' covering Combe Martin, Berrynarbor, Ilfracombe, Woolacombe, Mortehoe and many others in the surrounding area.

Christmas is only just around the corner and. as highlighted in the October issue, our first event in December will be a special Concert given by the Exmoor Carolers in our Church on Sunday 10th, commencing at 4.00 p.m. The Exmoor Carolers have a very high reputation for presenting Carols in an entertaining way, and the evening will close with mulled wine and mince pies.Tickets are available from the village Shop priced at £7.50.As previously mentioned, do not miss this special event!

A reminder to all that, for the very first time, pupils from our Primary School will be walking around the village singing Carols and songs to the community on the evening of Wednesday, 13th December, starting from the Shop car park at 6.00 p.m.We welcome parents and friends to what should be a really fun evening!

Our Christmas Carol Service will be held this year on Monday,

18th starting at 5.45pm for the really young ones, followed at 6.30pm by the main Carol Service.Do come and support this wonderful evening which usually attracts over 100 people. As always, mulled wine and mince pies will be served after the service with soft drinks and chocolates for all the children!

Since Christmas Eve is on a Sunday there will be no morning service because our traditional Christmas Eve Service, which although entitled Midnight Mass, starts, as always, at 9.30 p.m.We welcome everyone from Berrynarbor as well as visitors from other parts of the country and also dear friends from overseas to this annual celebration.

Our Christmas Day Service will be a short Family one, commencing at the usual time of 11.00 a.m.Mums, dads and children are most welcome.

Since there are five Sundays in December, we are not quite sure [at going to press] whether there will be a service on the 31st, which is, of course, New Year's Eve, but we'll inform everyone nearer the time.

Berrynarbor PCC wish to thank Karen and her team for providing the Friendship Lunches throughout the year - but since Christmas is a very busy time at The Globe, there will be no Lunch in December.

We wish all Berrynarbor residents a very Happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year.

Stuart Neale.

12



ST. PETER'S CHURCH

As mentioned in the August edition of the Newsletter, we have been welcoming visitors to our church services from this country and overseas. We are not only delighted that this has continued, but from our Church Visitors Book it is clear to see other visitors' comments relating to the beauty of St. Peter's, many of whom have travelled from Canada, America, Australia, New Zealand and other European countries.

On a more pressing note, we are currently in contact with many charitable organisations in an effort to obtain grants for the repair of the church roof, reinstatement of associated masonry and some areas of cast iron guttering which urgently need attention. This has been a long process and we hope that we shall be successful in the not too distant future, and that work can finally begin in earnest!

Michael Rogers, Bill Cole and George Billington continue to take our services with weddings, funerals and baptisms predominant over the last couple of months. We offer our thanks to them all and to the flower team and church cleaning ladies who make the church look so beautiful.

Some great news from our Bellringers! At the Combe Martin Carnivalwith ten bell-ringers and helpers, their float [which depicted our church complete with weather vane and fox] achieved 1st place in the Out of Town category! The bells were in 'mini-ring' mode, all complete with a sign directing everyone to The Globe pub!

As if that were not enough, at the Ilfracombe Carnival on the Sunday of the August Bank Holiday week-end, they did it all over again! This time they won Best Carnival Float and Out of Town Cups with huge support from a combined total of 14 bell-ringers, helpers and children!

So! Huge congratulations to them all especially to all those who helped build the float and not least to Richard Gingell who drove the towing tractor at both events.

It was with much sadness that we learnt of the passing of Joan Berry, one of our regular churchgoers over many years, who spent her remaining days in failing health at Lee Lodge. It is yet another sad blow for Simon who lost his dear Sue only a short while ago and we send our thoughts and prayers to him and the wider family at this time.

Our Harvest Service will be held on Sunday 1st October at 11.00 a.m. and our Harvest Supper on Wednesday 4th October 6.30 for 7.00 p.m. There will be a special combined Music and Quiz competition following the supper, which should be a great deal of fun! Tickets, priced £6.00 to include the super buffet and first drink, will be available from the Shop and Post Office and members of the PCC Committee.

Remembrance Sunday is on the 11th of November with the service commencing promptly at 10.45 a.m. in church, followed by the two-minute Silence by the War Memorial at 11.00 a.m.

And now, leading up to Christmas, which may seem early, but put the dates in your diaries and on your calendars! This year we have pleasure in inviting the Exmoor Carolers to Berrynarbor Church for their jolly renditions of Traditional and Folk Carols on Sunday 10th December commencing at 4.00 p.m. If you haven't seen and heard these Carolers before, do not miss this event! Tickets are £7.50 and will include mulled wine and mince pies following the performance.

A first for Berrynarbor School will be an evening walk around the village with candles and carol singing on Wednesday, 13th December, when they will visit as many residents as possible.

Our Christmas Carol Service, as usual with Berrynarbor School, will be held on Monday, 18th December, commencing at 5.45 p.m. for the younger ones with their carols and songs celebrating the Nativity,followed at 6.30 p.m. by the main Carol Service. This service is usually held on the last Wednesday before Christmas, however, with the School breaking up earlier it was decided to bring the service forward.

More details about all the above celebrations will be included in the December Newsletter.

Our services for October and November will follow the normal pattern commencing at 11.00 a.m.

Please note that on the 5th Sunday in October there will be a Joint Service held at St. Peter's Church, Combe Martin, commencing at 9.30 a.m.

Friendship Lunches will be held on the last Wednesday of the month in October and November, but due to the many other Christmas events, there will not be a Lunch in December.

Illustration by: Paul Swailes

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

With the holiday season in full swing, we have been welcoming visitors to our church services - from this country and from Holland, Germany, Canada and New Zealand. One gentleman from Holland had cycled from that country and then cycled all the way from Dover in Kent, calling in to Berrynarbor on his final leg to Land's End! One very amusing incident was his request to charge up his mobile 'phone in church, for which we were happy to oblige, so that he could call his mother back in Holland to tell her that he had arrived safely here in Berrynarbor! Without exception, all visitors say to us - coupled with messages in our visitors' book - what a beautiful church this is in such a beautiful village, and how everyone is so welcoming and friendly. We, serving on the PCC, make every effort to welcome everyone to St. Peter's and long may that continue. Canon Michael Rogers, Bill Cole and George Billington are conducting services on a regular basis and visits to the School and wider community are welcomed by all.

On a very sad note, which we were unable to record in the June issue, the sudden and unexpected death of Sue Kemp was a terrible blow to us all. Sue was a member of our church community and a regular sidesman for all services as well as helping to keep the church clean and spotless - nothing was too much trouble for Sue - and we miss her dearly! Our thoughts and prayers go out to her husband, Simon, Joan and to Ian and Kate Kemp.

Berrynarbor Choir sadly lost Linda Lunn in June following a long illness, and our choir sang a special tribute to her and her family at the funeral service held in Ilfracombe Parish Church.

Our Annual Gift Day was held on Wednesday 21st June, and we are extremely grateful for all the kind donations received from villagers and visitors alike. This year the day was combined with a very special Teddy Bear Abseiling event for pupils from both Berrynarbor Pre-School and Primary School. The teddy bears were abseiled from the top of the church tower, some 30 metres high, with much excitement from the children. All received a special certificate to commemorate the event!

In all, 91 teddy bears successfully abseiled down, although, to be truthful some actually turned up in the shape of a tiger, a monkey, a polar bear, a wolf, a jellyfish and even a 6-foot wiggly snake! Ah well! Everyone had a great time on probably the hottest day of the year, and we must really thank all those bellringers and helpers who stayed all day on top of the tower to make things happen. Well done to you all!


 

Illustrated by: Debbie Rigler-Cook

We are planning an Antique Fayre fund raising event, for both the Church and Macmillan Cancer Support, with Cheese and Wine refreshments on Friday, 22nd September to be held in the Manor Hall. We are currently waiting to hear from the antique specialists as to the time they can arrive on the day, and their visiting fee. We shall, therefore, be advertising this event in late August with all details, so look out for posters. Meanwhile, make a note of the date and please search your homes/lofts etc., for any artifacts you may possess in readiness for what should be a thoroughly enjoyable evening.

In conclusion, we must not forget to offer our thoughts and prayers for all those who are ill at this time, and for those who are waiting to have treatment in hospital.

Our services for August and September, commencing at 11.00 a.m. are:

Our Sunday morning Harvest Service will be on the 1st October at 11.00 a.m. Our Harvest Supper will be held on Wednesday 4th October at 6.30 for 7.00 p.m. Tickets will be available from the PCC Committee members and the Community Shop - £6 to include free first drink.

Friendship Lunches will be held on the last Wednesday of the month at The Globe, meeting at 12.00 for 12.30 p.m.

Stuart Neale

5



Artwork: Steve Angold [Aged 10]

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Our AGM, which took place on the 28th March in the Vestry, was chaired by Canon Michael Rogers with Rev. Bill Cole, our new House for Duty Priest, in attendance. The 2016 Annual Report was read by Stuart Neale and approved. The Audited accounts for 2016 were formally approved.

The position of Churchwarden was not filled and it was agreed that all PCC members would share various small duties to cover this very important role.All PCC members serving during 2016 agreed to be re-elected for 2017.We were very pleased to welcome Pip Summers to our PCC team for this year.

Pip, who is a member of our church flower arranging team, will make an important contribution to our committee. So that villagers and others in the community know who we are and may feel the need to contact us on any matter relating to St. Peter's, we list below the names of our committee members:

  • Stuart Neale - Deputy PCC Chairman & Organist
  • Jean Pell - Secretary
  • Margaret Sowerby - Treasurer and Flower Team
  • Jill McCrae - PCC Member
  • Yvonne Davey - Joint Deanery Synod Representative
  • Pip Summers - Flower Team
  • Doreen Prater - Joint Deanery Synod Representative
  • Sue Neale - Verger and Flower Team

A vote of thanks was made to all those who help clean the church on a regular basis and to our wonderful team of bell-ringers who not only ring for Sunday services but also for weddings and, when requested, for village funerals.Special thanks go to Bet Brooks who opens and closes the Church and regularly cleans brass plaques and other items within, and Matthew Walls and family for cutting the churchyard grass and other specialised gardening maintenance within both churchyards.

Graham Lucas continues to lead the Monday morning schoolchildren's assembly which generates much enthusiasm all round, and his dedication is much appreciated. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all who are ill at this time.

Our Gift Day will be on Wednesday 21st June, and we hope that, as in previous years, villagers will be generous in their support.This year we are combining this important day by holding, weather permitting, a Teddy Bear Abseiling event from the top of the church tower for all the schoolchildren, when they can see their own teddy bears abseiling down special ropes from the church tower to receive a special Teddy Bear

Certificate commemorating their own bear's abseiling feat! We shall keep the time involved to a minimum so as not to impede upon the children's education.This should be lots of fun, and all parents that are able to attend are most welcome to come and support their children.

Finally, and after much frustration, both black and green wheelie bins will be sited together, where the green bin currently stands next to the water tap and tank.We sincerely hope that this move will finally put an end to the inconsiderate person, or persons, placing plastic items and plastic film incorrectly into the green bin.Watch this space folks!

Church Services for June and July commencing at 11.00 a.m. are:

NB: for the 5th Sunday, that is 30th July, there will be Joint Service at Jim's', Ilfracombe at 10.30 a.m.

Friendship Lunches will be held on the last Wednesday of the month at The Globe, meeting at 12.00 for 12.30 p.m.

Stuart Neale

2



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

We are very pleased that our new Priest in charge, Canon Michael Rogers and Rev Bill Cole, as House for Duty Priest, are settling in to their new roles here in Berrynarbor and Combe Martin. Their presence will be much appreciated by all in the village, our school and congregation, as well as our PCC who as many of you will know have worked very hard over the last two years during the interregnum period.

We continue to have the welcome support of our retired Rector George Billington, and we shall soon be able to welcome back Celia Withers who is presently away on a Lay Readers course.

By the time you read this article our AGM will have taken place, but we are continuing to seek additional committee members to join our PCC, and should like to welcome anyone who can spare just a few hours per month to help spread the load and make things easier for us all.

As mentioned on several occasions, Margaret Sowerby and her husband Roger have taken on the important role of PCC Treasurer and together they have done a terrific job. The important thing to emphasise is that when occasional difficulties arise, we on the committee are all here to help each other by resolving matters quickly and efficiently.

As many in the village will know, the Church [and the Manor Hall] are experiencing problems with roofing, and the main central gutter which sits between the two church roofs and its supporting masonry, needs urgent repair. The PCC are currently approaching various organisations to obtain grants for the repairs in question, which will involve very high costs to the church. Therefore, we are taking immediate steps to effect a temporary repair to the central guttering, which is badly cracked, to prevent water from entering the interior roof and damaging the main roof beams. We hope to commence this work shortly, preferably when it's not raining, and will keep everyone up to date with our progress!

One of our oldest parishioners, Sylvia Berry, who is not in the best of health, is currently staying with her son Richard and his wife Vanessa at their farm just outside the parish. We hope that Sylvia is more comfortable being with her immediate family.

Church services for May, commencing at 11.00 a.m. will be as follows:

Friendship Lunches will be held on the last Wednesday of the month at The Globe, meeting at 12.00 for 12.30 p.m.

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Following the installation of our new Vicar, Canon Michael Rogers, a service for the Licencing and Installation of Rev Bill Cole - supported by Michael Rogers - took place on Monday 5th December at St. Peter's Church, Combe Martin. This enjoyable service was led jointly by the Lord Bishop of Exeter, the Right Revd. Robert Atwell, and the Archdeacon of Barnstaple. the Ven. Dr. Mark Butchers.

A special thank you to all the ladies who provided a superb buffet in the Church Hall following the service.

We wish Bob Cole and his wife Jenny a happy stay at the Combe Martin Rectory and look forward to his involvement here in Berrynarbor and Combe Martin in supporting Michael Rogers. Bob has already taken services here in Berrynarbor over the Christmas period but his initiation, accompanied by his wife Jenny, was attending the Senior Dudes Christmas Meal in the Manor Hall, brilliantly hosted by the older school children with support from the teaching staff. How smart they all looked as they served all the food, teas and coffees, causing much merriment and laughter all round. They all deserve a huge thank you!

Remembrance Sunday was well attended in a moving service led by Rev. George Billington, and wreaths were laid by members representing Berrynarbor Parish Council, Berrynarbor PCC and Berrynarbor School.

Our Christmas Carol Service was a huge success, and both Berrynarbor and the School Choirs sang Carols and other Christmas music for the congregation to enjoy. The First Lesson was read for the very first time by four school children cleverly reading one paragraph at a time, the effect was stunning! The service concluded with the singing of O Come all ye Faithful, followed by the serving of mulled wine and mince pies! Special thanks must go to our intrepid Bellringers - who as usual were fully engaged not just over the Christmas period, but throughout the past year.

Christmas services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were both well attended.

A very special vote of thanks must go to Graham Lucas whose Monday morning school assembly stories from the Bible were cleverly told and then re-enacted by the enthusiastic pupils.

Graham's time is very precious in caring for his wife Carol, and our thoughts and good wishes from all their friends in Berrynarbor go out to both of them throughout 2017.

Church services for the moment will follow the normal pattern as follows:-

All Berrynarbor services commence at 11.00 a.m. However, when a 5th Sunday occurs, there will be Joint Service with Combe Martin and 'Pip and Jim's' at one of the churches within the Coast & Combe Team. Posters at the Lych Gate and within the village will inform Parishioners as to these service venues and timings.

Don't forget the Mothering Sunday Service which will be on Sunday, 26th March.

The date of our Annual General Meeting - usually towards the end of March - has not yet been finalised, but will be advertised in the village nearer the time.

The Friendship Lunches will be held on the last Wednesday of the month in the Globe Pub to meet at 12.00 for 12.30pm, 22nd February and 29th March.

Stuart Neale

7



Artwork: Alvary Scott

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

After what seems such a long time, and at a special joint service, we, in both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin, had the greatest pleasure in attending the Installation of our new Vicar, the Rev. Michael Rogers, in St. Peter's Church on Sunday 23rd October. The service was led by our Archdeacon, Rev. Mark Butchers. The event was very well attended by parishioners from both communities. Whilst this service was predominantly for Berrynarbor and Combe Martin, we must not forget that St. Phillip and St James, Ilfracombe [perhaps better known as Pip and Jim's!] will be welcomed and linked to both our parishes. Rev. Michael will now be responsible for all three churches in the years ahead. Suitable refreshments were served following this important service.

We now look forward to the Licencing and Installation of Rev. Bill Cole, supported by Michael Rogers in St Peter's Church Combe Martin on Monday 5th December at 7.30 p.m. Bill will take on the role of House for Duty Priest in support of Michael Rogers to cover both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin parishes. This important service will be led by the Lord Bishop of Exeter.

Following the success of the Flower Festival entitled Anniversaries 2016, a fabulous Concert featuring the Chivenor Military Wives, together with the Berrynarbor and School Choirs, was held on 4th November. The church was packed to capacity, just over 200, and an evening of superb singing was enjoyed by all. There were 28 Chivenor ladies, 18 Berrynarbor Choir members and 13 wonderful Berrynarbor School children who sang their hearts out. The finale, at the Chivenor Military Wives' request, featured all three choirs singing my arrangement of Joshua fit the battle of Jericho, with rapturous applause from the audience.

It must be recorded that Judith Adam was responsible for organising the evening with support from her husband Geoff, and much credit must go to them for staging this wonderful Concert.

Bouquets were presented to Judith and conductor Rachel Smith by Sue Neale, and to pianist Sue Trick by Berrynarbor School conductor Christina Barrow. Special commemorative medals were presented to all 13 schoolchildren by members of the Chivenor Military Wives Choir and all featured in a photoshoot at the end of the Concert.

From a personal point of view, it was such a pleasure to work with Rachel in rehearsing together the finale with the Military Wives at their base in Chivenor, and likewise with both Berrynarbor Choirs who have worked so hard over the last few months. A final thanks to Dot Stairmand who expertly conducted three of our choir pieces at very short notice due to our regular conductor and alto vocalist, Bish Muir being regretfully unable to attend. Also, a personal thank you to Christina Barrow who conducted the Children's Choir.

A special thank you to the bell ringers who not only rang for us, but also helped to transport chairs from the Manor Hall to and from the church before and after the concert. Superb refreshments were organised in the Manor Hall following the Concert by Wendy Applegate and her team.

What a wonderful evening to remember and a huge thankyou to all who attended the concert, which will raise much needed funds for the repair of the Manor Hall and Church roofs. I'm sure I've forgotten to mention many other people who also helped on the night - but many thanks anyway!

Remembrance Sunday will have passed by the time this edition of the Newsletter goes to print, and we hope that many in the village will have supported this important service in remembrance of all servicemen and women who died during two World Wars.

There may be some minor changes to church services over the Christmas season, so please do check the posters at the lych gate and village shop for up to date information.

The annual Christmas Carol Service, followed by mulled wine and mince pies, will take place on Wednesday, 21st December, at 6.30 p.m.

There will be the usual Christmas Eve Holy Communion Service on Saturday, 24th December, commencing at 9.30 p.m. A short Family Service will be held on Christmas Day at 11.00 a.m.

There will be no Friendship Lunch in December but there will be a Friendship Lunch on the last Wednesday in January 2017.

Stuart Neale

4



ST. PETER'S CHURCH

At last some good news! Our new Vicar, Rev. Michael Rogers, will be installed in St. Peter's Church on Sunday, 23rd October at 11.00 a.m. The service, which will be a combined service with Combe Martin, St. Philip and St. James and Berrynarbor, will be led by our new Archdeacon Rev. Mark Butchers, and all are invited to this special day. More good news follows with the appointment of Bob Coles who will take on the role of House for Duty Priest in support of Michael Rogers. Bob will assist both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin parishes and his special Licencing Service, supported by Michael Rogers, will be held at St. Peter's Combe Martin on Monday, 5th December. [NB An evening time has yet to be finalised and we shall inform everyone as soon as possible.]

The Flower Festival entitled Anniversaries 2016 was an outstanding success, with wonderful displays commemorating The Royal Mail, William Shakespeare, Sir Isaac Newton, the first commercial flight of Concorde and the first flight of the famous Spitfire. The artist L.S. Lowry was celebrated as was England's famous 1966 World Cup victory, Roald Dahl and Beatrix Potter, and Capability Brown. It was, of course, the Queen's 90th Birthday, the 100th anniversary of the formation of Cubs and Scouts, the 300th anniversary of the Great Fire of London and not forgetting the 50th anniversary of the Ilfracombe Flower Club.

A big thank you to everyone involved in the floral displays and to those who helped with the refreshments over the four days of the Festival, and, of course, to all those who supported this event. It is a pleasure to announce that £464 was raised which will be apportioned to the Church and Ilfracombe Floral Art Club, whose members' support was much appreciated.

We were hoping to hold a small fund raising event in September, but this has been put on hold for the time being. However, we are all preparing - especially the Berrynarbor and School Choirs - for the forthcoming concert by the Military Wives Choir on Friday, 4th November. There is much to do organisation-wise and we hope to raise much needed funds for both the Manor Hall and the repair of the church roof.

Sadly, two of our Choir members - Linda Lunn and Elain Filer - are going through difficult times with Linda losing her husband recently and Elaine's brother very poorly in a hospice. Our thoughts and prayers are with them both and their respective families.

Please note that the Sunday Services for October will be slightly different and are as follows:

Friendship Lunches will be held in The Globe as usual, 12.00 noon for 12.30 p.m. on the last Wednesday of the month - 26th October and 30th November.

Stuart Neale


 

This picture of St. Peter's was taken some 50 years ago and shows elm trees on the left hand side of the lychgate. Sadly, they died. One fell down the other was cut down by Ivan Huxtable, Bill's twin brother. He was the only person with a chain saw!

Lorna Bowden


Was this a case of Dutch Elm Disease? Dutch elm disease is caused by a member of the sac fungi and is spread by the elm bark beetle. Although believed to be originally native to Asia, the disease has been accidentally introduced into America and Europe, where it devastated native populations of elms that did not have resistance to the disease. About 1967, a new, far more virulent strain arrived in Britain on a shipment of rock elm logs from North America, and this strain proved both highly contagious and lethal to European elms; more than 25 million trees died in the UK alone. By 1990 very few mature elms were left in Britain or much of continental Europe.

One of the most distinctive English countryside trees, the English elm is particularly susceptible. Thirty years after the outbreak of the epidemic, nearly all these trees, which often grew to more than 45m high, were gone. The species still survives in hedgerows, as the roots are not killed and send up root sprouts or suckers. These suckers rarely reach more than 5m tall before succumbing to a new attack of the fungus. However, established hedges kept low by clipping have remained.

3



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

We still await the formal arrival of our new Vicar, Michael Rogers, but the good news, at the time of writing, is that we have received replies from two candidates for the House for Duty Priest to support Michael. Interviews are to be held on the 14th July, when it is hoped there will be a successful outcome and that we shall be able to announce some really positive news in the very near future.

Our new Treasurer Margaret Sowerby, and her husband Roger, have been working very hard to get to grips with this important role and have completely modernised the system to make life easier all round. We are delighted, with the full support of the PCC, that they have become part of the team.

Our annual Gift Day raised £817 and we are extremely grateful to all those who gave donations. With major expenditure needed on the fabric of the church on our list of priorities, these donations will be very helpful indeed.

A big thank you for all those who supported the Flower Demonstration and Afternoon Tea - we managed to raise £180 towards the flowers for the Anniversaries 2016 Flower Festival, which by the time you read this will have taken place and we hope it will have given much pleasure to everyone who has supported this colourful event between the 22nd and 25th July.

For a whole raft of reasons, mainly logistical, we shall not be holding our Church Fayre this year. However, we shall be holding an alternative event, hopefully in September, which we feel will be attractive to residents and visitors alike. We shall be advertising this event and its timing towards the end of August.

The Berrynarbor Choir, who meet on Monday evenings from 7.30 p.m., are currently practising hard for Harvest Festival, Remembrance Sunday and, of course, the premier event of the year, the Concert by the Military Wives' Choir. This will be held in the church on Friday, 4th November, when our Choir will be singing during the concert as well as Berrynarbor School Choir. The evening should be a wonderful one of musical entertainment. Judith Adam who has spent many months of negotiation to book the Military Wives Choir will be advertising the Concert during the autumn.

Church Services continue to follow the same format:

All Services commence at 11.00 a.m.

Harvest Festival Service will be on Sunday, 2nd October, and the Harvest Festival Supper on Wednesday, 5th October, 6.30 for 7.00 p.m.

Friendship Lunches will be held in The Globe, 12.00 for 12.30 p.m. on the last Wednesday of the month.

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Unfortunately, there is no further news about the installation of our new Vicar, Michael Rogers, as we are still awaiting replies to our advertisement for a House for Duty Priest to support Michael, and sincerely hope that we have some more positive news to announce in the very near future. On the positive side, Michael is already taking services here and in Combe Martin, which certainly eases the strain on our PCC.

Our AGM was held on the 29th March and Jean Pell, Sue Neale, Jill McCrae, Yvonne Davey and Doreen Prater were all re-elected with yours truly acting as PCC Chairman for 2016.

As mentioned in the April issue, we were very sad to hear of Pat and Malcolm Sayer's departure from the village and a gift box of wine was presented to them both shortly before they went on their way. We wish them both a happy time in their new home, nearer to their immediate family in the Cheltenham area.

We have been trying to recruit a new Treasurer for the PCC for several months now and we are very happy to welcome Margaret Sowerby and her husband Roger, who have very kindly offered to take on this position. It is always daunting when a new treasurer takes on this responsibility, but we on the PCC will offer Margaret and Roger all possible help and support in the months ahead.

We are all looking forward to our special Flower Festival on Friday 22nd July through to Monday, 25th inclusive. In this year of so many anniversaries to celebrate, it will be called - surprise, surprise - Anniversaries 2016.

Berrynarbor PCC and so many members of our congregation were sad to hear the passing of Ethel Tidbury, who many of you in the parish will know was the oldest resident in Berrynarbor. She had reached 102 years of age and had a wonderful life together with her family and we send our condolences to Linda and her family for their sad loss at this time.

We are delighted, especially our Choir members, to see Elaine Filer back on her feet again following her untimely fall fracturing her hip.

This year's Gift Day will be on Wednesday, 22nd June, when members of the church will be at the Lych Gate to receive your envelopes. We hope, in this difficult financial year for us with urgent major repairs needed on the church roof, that, as always, the people of Berrynarbor will be generous in their support.

Church Services follow the same format:

There will, however, be a Joint Service at St. Peter's on Sunday, 31st July, at 11.00 a.m.

Finally, all our welcome to the Friendship Lunches held in The Globe, 12.00 for 12.30 p.m., on the last Wednesday of the month.

Stuart Neale




As you will see from the above, we are planning to serve tea, coffee and cakes daily in the Church during the Flower Festival, and are looking for volunteers to help us please. We are hoping for donations of cakes, scones, etc., and also help with serving for one or two hours. If you can help in any way, please contact Jean Pell on [01271] 883187. Thank you


4



Artwork: Steve Angold [Aged 10]

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

As mentioned in the February Newsletter, we are looking forward to welcoming our new Vicar Michael Rogers to serve both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin parishes - hopefully by April this year. Rev. Michael has already taken services at both churches and has made great efforts to get to meet parishioners - and will no doubt be able to make himself known in our village and Primary School in the fullness of time. Advertising is already under way for the House for Duty Priest, a position that will support Michael in the wider community once he has officially taken up the reins here in Berrynarbor.

Our AGM will have taken place by the time this edition of the Newsletter is circulated and we sincerely hope that we are able to attract a new Treasurer to join us on our PCC. It is very important that we attract a new Treasurer to our fold because Malcolm Sayer - our current Treasurer - and his wife Pat will sadly be moving away from Berrynarbor at the end of March to be nearer their family. Malcolm's departure will be a great loss to us all for he has been an absolute rock and helped steer us financially during these difficult times. We wish him and Pat the very best in their new home. NB - If there is anyone in Berrynarbor or nearby who would like to take on the post of Treasurer we should be very pleased to hear from you. It is not a requirement that an applicant attend church services in deciding to take up this post. Please contact me on [01271] 883893 if you would be willing to help.

A Quinquennial Inspection - 5-year inspection by the Diocese of Exeter's architect - was carried out in September last year and we have now received the full report. The Architect acknowledged that the church has been well maintained but there is a serious issue with regard to the lead guttering and associated flashings that needs immediate attention to prevent water from entering the ceiling and adjacent roof beams inside the church. Although there are many grants that are available to us from various sources, the PCC has to contribute £6,000 from our funds to get things underway. This will make a sizeable dent in our funds, but we have to move forward in a positive way to avoid serious damage to the fabric of the church.

On a more uplifting subject, we shall be holding a special Flower Festival entitled 'Anniversaries 2016' commencing on Friday 22nd July to the 25th inclusive. There will be no entrance fee for this event but any donation towards the cost of flowers before the event would be very welcome. There will be a Planning Meeting on Friday, 6th May at 11;00 a.m. in the church and we should welcome all those interested in taking part or offers of help.

For anyone who is interested in joining Berrynarbor Choir to sing a wide range of music, please contact me on [01271] 883893 at any time. We meet on Monday evenings from 7.30 - 8.30 p.m. If there are tenors out there - and there must be - Britain, no Berrynarbor Needs You!

We wish our retired Rector, George Billington, the best of health following his recent illness and Elaine Filer who unfortunately fractured her hip recently and is now convalescing. Her friends from Berrynarbor Choir and the bell ringers wish her a speedy recovery;

Church Services will follow the same format as before and are:

All services commence at 11.00 a.m.

Please note there will be a Joint Service with Combe Martin held at St. Peter's Church, Combe Martin on Sunday, 29th May commencing at 9.30 a.m.

The next Friendship Lunches will be held in The Globe from 12.00 noon on Wednesdays 27th April and 25th May.

Stuart Neale

3



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

First and foremost we hope that everyone had an enjoyable Christmas spent with your families. In this new year we are now looking forward to welcoming our new Vicar, Michael Rogers, to serve both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin Parishes - hopefully by April at the latest. His presence will bring much needed support to our community as a whole, and welcome news for Berrynarbor School with whom Michael will be working in the years ahead. Apart from Berrynarbor PCC, Michael will have the support of a 'House for Duty Priest' who will be offering help and assistance to both our communities on a part time basis. This important position is currently being advertised and we shall in due course inform everyone who the successful candidate is.

The Christmas Carol Service was a great success, and how nice to welcome so many parents and relatives to the first part of the Service which focused on the very young ones from Berrynarbor School. Their singing of songs and carols was a delight and it is a marvel that they all managed to remember all the words! Well done indeed!

The main Carol Service commenced at 6.30 p.m. and a special mention to the School Choir who sang the carol Infant Holy, Infant Lowly in both Polish and English to perfection. The Berrynarbor Choir sang The Angel Gabriel, unaccompanied with difficult harmonies to contend with, creating a really beautiful performance.

The very special version of In the Bleak Mid-Winter by Harold Darke was also beautifully sung with special praise to our two tenors - Graham Lucas and Bobby Bowden - for their superb duet in the third verse.

The Congregation had their chance to sing popular carols, finishing with the usual O Come All Ye Faithful at the end of the service. Many thanks to our retired Rector George Billington, who conducted proceedings, and to all the ladies who helped prepare and serve mulled wine and mince pies after the service. A truly wonderful evening enjoyed by all!

The Christmas Eve - Midnight Mass - Service, again conducted by George Billington, was well attended considering that many parishioners were away for the Christmas break to visit family and other relations and the Christmas Day Service, too, was very well attended with many visitors present to enjoy a short Family Carol service. Grateful thanks to Celia Withers for Officiating and to Graham Lucas who kindly deputised for me on the Organ.

Church Services will follow the same format as in 2015, and are as follows:

NB: There will be a Joint Service with Combe Martin [Holy Communion] on Sunday 31st January at 11.00 a.m. to be held in Berrynarbor Church.

Friendship Lunches at The Globe will continue to be held on the last Wednesday in each month, from 12.00 noon onwards. Everyone welcome.

With regard to Easter Services - my goodness we're nearly there again! - these will be as follows:-

Berrynarbor PCC Annual General Meeting will be held on Tuesday 29th March at 2.00 p.m.

In conclusion I offer my sincere thanks to all those dedicated members on our PCC who have worked tirelessly over this extended period of Interregnum. I, for one, will await the arrival of Michael Rogers with a great deal of pleasure - coupled with a great sigh of relief!

A Happy New Year to you all!

Stuart Neale
Acting Chairman Berrynarbor PCC

3



Artwork: David Duncan

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Understandably, I keep getting asked when our new Vicar is going to arrive. The straight answer to this is I just don't know! However, what I can tell you is that our new Archdeacon Mark Butchers is going as fast as he can to accelerate matters, not just for Berrynarbor but for Combe Martin as well!

Following the break-away from the North Devon Coast Team by Parracombe, Trentishoe, Martinhoe, Lynton, Lynmouth and Brendon nearly a year ago, leaving Berrynarbor and Combe Martin thoroughly isolated, both our PCC's have had to consider many options to ensure the continuation of Church, Wedding, Funeral, Baptism and other Services within our two Churches throughout this year!


 
Illustration by: Paul Swailes

What is likely is that Berrynarbor and Combe Martin will link up with one of the Churches in Ilfracombe in the very near future, and so it now looks, assuming everything goes to plan, as if we shall be able to welcome the Rev. Michael Rogers as the new Vicar in the early part of 2016.

Our Harvest Festival Service was well attended with lots of jolly singing from Berrynarbor School as well as a beautiful Anthem sung by Berrynarbor Choir. We were very grateful to Rev. Clive Thomas from Ilfracombe, who although retired, was absolutely wonderful with the youngsters from the School handing out lots of special sweets to them, who in turn ensured that the congregation didn't go without!

Our Harvest Supper was very successful with everyone enjoying a superb buffet together with wine and cider! A big thank you as always goes to the ladies who supplied the wonderful food and to Malcolm and Stuart for providing a really excellent quiz and 'sing song'.

The Service for Loved Ones is always a lovely service which was sympathetically led by our retired Rector George Billington, culminating in the placing of special candles on the altar from the congregation.

Berrynarbor's Remembrance Sunday Service on the 8th November was led by George Billington and Berrynarbor School had produced some wonderful artistic tributes and poems to those brave soldiers, sailors and airmen who gave their lives in the First and Second World Wars and several other conflicts to those more recently in Afghanistan. The service is very poignant and this year was made even more so by the beautiful unaccompanied singing of Elgar's We Will Remember Them by the Berrynarbor Choir. On behalf of all those who attended this year's service our sincere gratitude to Ivan Clarke who played the The Last Post so beautifully on his bugle.

The Christmas Carol Service is not far off and we look forward to welcoming everyone to this fabulous service on Wednesday 16th December at 6.00 p.m. for Berrynarbor School young ones and 6.30 p.m. for the main Carol Service with older children from the School. Remember, there will be mulled wine and mince pies following this service. Our traditional Christmas Eve Service will start at 9.30 p.m. led by George Billington and there will be a short Family Service on Christmas Day commencing at 11.00 a.m.

Berrynarbor PCC has taken the decision not to hold a service on Sunday 27th December as it feels that following the Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Services on Thursday and Friday, followed by Boxing Day on Saturday, many people will either be visiting or hosting relatives on that day.

A reminder that the next Friendship Lunch held in the Globe will be on Wednesday 27th January from 12.00 noon. Everyone welcome.

Along with Berrynarbor School we should like to extend our grateful thanks to Graham Lucas for conducting all the Monday Morning Assemblies in Church. Graham, who communicates with the children in language they can really understand, involves them in acting out the Bible scenes in a meaningful way which they obviously enjoy!

Finally, Berrynarbor PCC and our parishioners send our grateful thanks to George Billington,

Celia Withers, Chris James, Michael Rogers, John Roles, Keith Wyer and Clive Thomas for officiating at Church Services over the last year. We wish them all a very Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Stuart Neale

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Artwork: Alvary Scott

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

Following my comments in the August edition of the Newsletter, we have moved on to the stage where a meeting was held in Berrynarbor Church on 7th September with a prospective candidate for the position of a Vicar for both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin.

The meeting was extremely encouraging, and there will be two or three follow up meetings with other organisations in the very near future - with the outcome put forward to the Diocese and our new Archdeacon before any formal announcement will be made. Berrynarbor PCC looks forward to really positive news for the next edition of the Berrynarbor Newsletter.

Our annual Church Fayre was held on the 18th August in beautiful weather with the hope of attracting as many visitors to the event as possible. However, we believe that the weather slightly backfired on us and many visitors remained on the beaches! As a result numbers were well down on last year but nevertheless we enjoyed a good evening and were very grateful for the support we received. We managed to make a profit [albeit slightly down on last year] of a very creditable £807. These events cannot be run without all the support of so many volunteers - to the erection of marquees in the morning and to all those who helped on the evening! Once again, a very special thank you to Richard Gingell for transporting the skittle alley, barbeque and other items, and to John and Fenella Boxall for the loan of their barbeque.

We shall be holding our Service for Loved Ones with lighting of candles on Sunday, 1st November, at 3.00 p.m. This is a beautiful service which we hope many parishioners and others will support. Refreshments will be served following the service. Please note: there will be no Sunday morning service on this day.

We shall be holding our Remembrance Service on Sunday, 8th November starting promptly at 10.45 a.m. in the church with the laying of wreaths at the War Memorial at 11.00 a.m. With the anniversaries of the ending of the Second World War in both Europe and Japan, it is especially important that we in Berrynarbor pay our tribute to all those gallant men and women from Great Britain, the Commonwealth and other European countries, who gave their lives so that we may be free today!

The Christmas Carol Service in the Church will be held on Wednesday,16th December starting at 6.00 p.m. for the really young ones with the main service commencing at 6.30 p.m. From experience we have found that this format works very well indeed, giving the young ones the opportunity to sing all their Christmas songs and to participate in a Nativity scene without getting soaking wet in the village square - thanks to the British weather!

The Berrynarbor and School Choirs will be singing a selection of Carols and the evening will end, in the usual tradition, with the serving of mulled wine and mince pies! This service is always full to capacity, so please come early to find a seat!

Finally, the monthly Friendship Lunch from12.00 noon in The Globe will be held on the last Wednesdays in October, 28th, and November, 25th. The next one will then be on the 27th January 2016! Please come along and support this very enjoyable event.

Stuart Neale - Acting Chairman, Berrynarbor PCC

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Artwork: Paul Swailes

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

A recent meeting with the new Archdeacon Rev. Mark Butchers was attended by PCC members from both Berrynarbor and Combe Martin churches with the view of exploring various ways of moving forward during this difficult time without a Rector for our two parishes.

The meeting was extremely encouraging and it was made clear by Rev. Mark that he desired a speedy solution to our present situation and has set up a platform for positive meetings with clergy from other parishes to explore ways of resolving our immediate problems.

Clearly Rev. Mark is a man of action, and further meetings have been held which we hope will bring a positive outcome for us all. As Acting Chairman of our PCC, I hope I shall be in the position to announce encouraging news by the time the next issue of the Newsletter is published.

We are extremely grateful for the great support from George Billington and also visiting clergy over the last couple of months, and are hopeful that this will continue in the months ahead.

It was hoped that our Primary School, following positive discussions with Headteacher Sue Carey, would be involved in a special School Church Service before the children break up for the summer holidays, but due to various commitments and the school syllabus, this will have to be delayed until the autumn.

Gift Day was very successful and £707 was donated to the church thanks to the generosity of you all and rest assured, the money raised will be directed towards the running of our beautiful church, especially in mind that every five years we have to engage [under Diocesan rules] a Church Architect to inspect the whole fabric of the building, including electrical items, heating, lighting and fire inspections. This costs a lot of money in addition to other outgoings related to regular payments for the church's annual energy consumption. The inspection is due this coming September!

We have now provided two new wheelie bins [one black and one green]located near the lych gate and water tank/tap respectfully. There are notices on both bins to advise residents and visitors what items should be placed in them and as most people should be aware, the black bin is for general household rubbish and the green one for decayed flowers and foliage only. It seems, however, that some people do not read notices, or dare I say it, don't mind where they place their rubbish. A reminder that the plastic or wrappers surrounding flowers should be placed in the black bin, not the green one! PLEASE do try to help us look after the churchyard by doing the right thing, as you would at home.

The Church Fayre is not far away and we look forward to a successful evening on TUESDAY, 18TH AUGUST, commencing at 5.30 p.m. As usual there will be many sideshows and stalls for residents and visitors to enjoy and our jolly George B. and his team of helpers will again be running the super BBQ!

Please save any books, CD's, DVD's, games, bric-a-brac, etc., and contact me [883893] or any member of the PCC if you would like items collected.

On a sad note, we have to report an attempted break-in to the church vestry. Thankfully, the culprit[s] didn't manage to get in and apart from minor damage to the vestry doors, they left empty handed. The incident was reported to the Police but it is unlikely that they will be able to trace the offender[s]. So, we just request that we all be vigilant and report anything suspicious in the future.

Again we must thank Matthew and his team for keeping the churchyard in good order, our intrepid bell ringers who turn out virtually every Sunday - and at other times as well, for weddings and funerals - our flower ladies and everyone on the cleaning rota who help to keep St. Peter's such a beautiful church. We are proud of you all!

Forthcoming Events:

Tickets for the Harvest Supper will be available from the Church and the Village Shop. Everyone is welcome at the Friendship Lunches - please bring a friend with you!

Stuart Neale

5



Artwork: Helen Armstead

ST. PETER'S CHURCH

The Annual General meeting was held in St. Peter's Church on the 31st March, following the election of officers to stand on the PCC for 2015.

Unfortunately, there were no applications to take on the responsibility of Churchwarden following my resignation and it was agreed that the whole committee would share the load for this year. If there is anyone in the village who would be willing to take on the role of Churchwarden, then we should welcome you with open arms!

As mentioned in the Easter and April edition of the Newsletter, we are still without a resident Rector to serve the parishes of Berrynarbor and Combe Martin. Maureen Richards [who is acting PCC Chairman and Churchwarden for Combe Martin] and myself [acting PCC Chairman during the interregnum] are continuing to work very hard with their respective teams to lobby the powers that be in redressing the current situation that exists in both our communities. We shall endeavour to keep everyone informed as to any meaningful progress that arises in the months ahead.

Church services at Berrynarbor are continuing every Sunday and we are indeed extremely grateful to Berrynarbor's George Billington, Celia Withers from Combe Martin, together with John Roles and Michael Rogers - both from Ilfracombe - for their valuable input and considerable time in conducting a wide range of services for the community.

John Roles organised a special Joint Palm Sunday Service for Berrynarbor and Combe Martin involving the congregation in a re-enactment of the events leading up to the Crucifixion. Keith Wyer, who many of you will remember as our Rector and Rector for the North Devon Coast Team is, with John Roles, taking many of the weddings to be held here and in Combe Martin, and will also be available to conduct baptisms and funeral services throughout this year.

Berrynarbor Primary School continues to hold its Monday Morning Assembly in the Church and a great deal of thanks must go to Graham Lucas who has rejuvenated the proceedings with really interesting stories and involving the children to re-enact the events with much vigour and, above all, a great deal of fun! Well done Graham!

I have been in contact with Headteacher Sue Carey to consider ways of involving the School in a special Church Service sometime in the next couple of months and before the children break up for the summer holidays. The details have yet to be finalised, but we are very keen to encourage all parents to support this event, and it would be wonderful if villagers in turn could come along and ensure a packed to capacity church on the Sunday that we decide upon! The Service will involve many things, but more importantly, it will be a truly joyous event!

Finally, we really must convey, on behalf of everyone in Berrynarbor, a special thank you to Matthew Walls and his team for cutting and strimming the Churchyard grass on a regular basis. This hard work is very much appreciated by villagers and visitors alike in keeping the churchyard in superb condition. Well done Matthew!

To help keep our churchyard tidy, it would be appreciated if those tending graves and other visitors would kindly take their waste - dead flowers, plants, plastic pots, etc. - home for disposal or if not, place them in the rubbish bin provided and located by the lych gate.

Forthcoming events: