You will see from my separate write-up that we had a very successful Open Day & Craft Fair again this year, with a separate evening function to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Top Field restoration. Those that attended will remember the very moving moment when the Walsingham chapel stained glass window, illuminated from the inside, was picked out against an ever changing pattern of light on the east wall of the church.
Our church building forebears have left us a priceless enduring legacy, but also a great challenge as regards upkeep and conservation. The windows are by Charles Eamer Kempe (1837-1907) and our centenary guide describes them as showing the influence of William Morris, particularly in the pre-Raphaelite hair styles and faces. Apparently Kempe considered becoming ordained, but was advised against due to a pronounced stammer. He reportedly commented ‘if I cannot serve at the Sanctuary, I shall instead devote myself to adorning it’.
We have been greatly encouraged by comments made both by residents and visitors about the improvements to the Churchyard and the areas around the Church Hall, which the Open Day & Craft Fair helps to fund.
For a couple of years now we have kept the Upper Churchyard semi-wilded, with no close mowing. Volunteers do though remove thistles and ragwort, and the incipient self seeding beech trees. The Top Field (Community Garden) and the Garden of Remembrance continue to be close mown.
Our pattern of worship continues around the regular 11.15 Parish Mass, to which all are welcome.