News mainly from the Parish magazine from the Parochial Church Council
& others on what we are doing

Church Matters (16): Dec2013
Church Matters (15): Nov 2013
Church Matters 14: Oct 2013
Church Matters 13: Sep 2013
Church Matters 12: Aug 2013
Church Matters 11: Jul 2013
Church Matters 10: Jun 2013
Church Matters 9: May 2013
Church Matters 8: Apr 2013
Church Matters 7: Mar 2013
Church Matters 6: Feb 2013
Church Matters 5: Jan 2013

Church Matters 4: Dec 2012
Church Matters 3: Nov 2012
Church Matters 2: Sep 2012
PCC News: Jul 2012

Re-plastering: Jul 2011

2010 Parochial Church Meeting

Church Matters (39): Dec 2015
Church Matters (38): Nov 2015
Church Matters (37): Oct 2015
Church Matters (36): Sep 2015
Church Matters (35): Aug 2015
Church Matters (34): Jun 2015
Church Matters (33): May 2015
Church Matters (32): Apr 2015
Church Matters (31): Mar 2015
Church Matters (30): Feb 2015
Church Matters (29): Jan 2015

Church Matters (28): Dec 2014
Church Matters (27): Nov 2014
Church Matters (26): Oct 2014
Church Matters (25): Sep 2014
Church Matters (24): Aug 2014
Church Matters (23): Jul 2014
Church Matters (22): Jun 2014
Church Matters (21): May 2014
Church Matters (20): Apr 2014
Church Matters (19): Mar 2014
Church Matters (18): Feb 2014
Church Matters (17): Jan 2014

Church Matters (54): Jun 2017
Church Matters (53): May 2017
Church Matters (52)
: April 2017
Church Matters (51): Mar 2017
Church Matters (50): Feb 2017
Church Matters (49)
: Jan 2017

Church Matters (48): Dec 2016
Church Matters (47)
: Nov 2016

Church Matters (46): Oct 2016

Church Matters (45): Sep 2016

Church Matters (44): Jul 2016
Church Matters (43): Jun 2016

Church Matters (42): Apr 2016

Church Matters (41): Feb 2016
Church Matters (40)
: Jan 2016

2016 APCM
2016 APCM Activity Reports
First meeting of new PCC 27 May 2015
2015 APCM
2014 APCM Activity Reports April 2014
2014 APCM - 2013 Trustees Report & Accounts April 2014
New Future Update: Jan 2014
Leatherhead Parish Vision and Values, 2013: Jul 2013
News leaflet Easter 2013
Moving on - the sixthirty 2013
C of E's Structures of Governance: Jan 2013
Important news leaflet : Dec 2012
A New Future for St Mary & St Nicholas Church: Oct 2012
For your information Aug 2012
Parish Funding update Aug 2012
New Worship Pattern: May 2012
Parish Vision Project: April 2012
Achieving the Vision Feb 2012
Parish Funding Programe: Feb 2012
Review of Experimental Worship Pattern: Jan 2012
Review of Experimental Worship Pattern: Dec 2011
Parish Funding Programme: Jan 2012
Review of Experimental Worship Pattern: Dec 2011
Review of Experimental Worship Pattern: Nov 2011
Growing as Disciples Key Area Working Group (KAWG)
progress update: Nov 2011
Parish funding: Sep 2011
We need a Mission - Vision Statement
Planned Giving - from the June 2009 magazine

These pages are maintained by the Parish Archivist Frank Haslam. It will be very helpful if you let Frank know of any problems you have encountered on these pages.

There was no Church Matters article in the July 2017 magazine

Church Matters (54) - from the June 2017 magazine
The Annual Parochial Church Meeting in April was well attended. The Annual Report, including the audited accounts, was presented and approved. The electoral roll stands slightly increased at 181 people.
Having completed her term of office as Church Warden, Sue Roberts stepped down. She was presented with a plant for her garden. Anne Thomson has been elected as the new Church Warden to work alongside Martin Farrell. Please hold our two wardens and the PCC in your prayers as they promote in the Parish the whole mission of the Church.

One vacancy for the Deanery Synod remains vacant. If anyone is interested in becoming another one of our representatives please contact Graham. The role involves 2-3 meetings a year with representatives from 13 parishes in our Deanery. The most recent topic to be debated was refugees and the next one is education.

At the Archdeacon's Visitation on 11th May we had the pleasure of welcoming wardens from all over the Archdeaconry to a service where they made promises to serve God and the Church.
It was lovely that the church was still decorated with dance themed floral arrangements from our Flower and Music Festival. "Dancing in the Aisles" was enjoyed by over 200 people. We are grateful to the sponsors, Truelove & Son and Patrick Gardner, and everyone who helped to make the event such a fantastic celebration. We raised just over £1,000 toward our Making History project fund.

Church Matters (53) - from the May 2017 magazine
Have you lost it? It may have been found and is waiting for you in the lost property basket. Here are some of the interesting items waiting for their owners to claim them. Seven umbrellas, five pairs of gloves, a very good Peter Storm waterproof, a pair of glasses in a silver metallic case, two black beanie hats, a very nice Pringle scarf, and two clean and almost new cloth shopping bags.

Unclaimed items will be taken to a charity shop.

Progress with the reordering of our church moves ahead. At its meeting on March 22nd the PCC decided to go ahead with the plans that had been explained at the church meetings on March 4th and 9th. An outline floor plan of the church is displayed in church. By the time you read this, the DAC - Diocesan Advisory Committee - will have visited the church again to explore the proposals in detail and given us their views. Other bodies that must be consulted, such as the Victorian Society and English Heritage, will also have been involved. The conversation with the DAC will set a base for moving forward.

The big Spring Clean took place in the morning of April 1st as church cleaning teams and others swept, dusted, polished, cleared away cobwebs, and generally tidied the church. A very noticeable improvement is the area just inside the north door which now offers much more space for people to come in, feel welcomed and move to a pew ready for a service. All surveys of new people who come to church - not just our church but Anglican churches in general - show that the welcome we offer to newcomers and the interest that we take in making them comfortable are the biggest reasons why people come back to worship another time.

When was the last time you danced in the aisles? Why don't you try it again, only this time dance in church to a Big Band sound and enjoy a cold buffet supper. Between May 5th and 7th there will be a flower and music festival in church with different events each day. You can get more information and tickets from the parish office, from Nicky Osborne, Beverley Stonehouse, and Frances Presley. Posters are up in church and the programme features the Ashtead Singers, a free organ fest with the Parker organ, as well as the Big Band event, a celebration parish communion in the morning of 7th, and a cream tea that afternoon.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (52) - from the April 2017 magazine
Firstly, I should begin with a dose of Mea Culpa. This Latin phrase means "through my fault" and is an acknowledgement of having done something wrong. Sharp eyed readers of Church Matters last month noticed that I had recorded the date of the Annual Parish Church Meeting incorrectly. It is set for the evening of Wednesday April 26th. A note to this effect has been published in the Welcome leaflet for March 5th. Reports for the APCM should be in the Parish Office by March 29th and changes to the Electoral Roll must be published by April 12th.

The first meeting of the Diocesan Synod for this year was held at Holy Trinity Claygate on Saturday morning March 4th. We began as usual at 09.30 with some time for worship led this time by the Vicar of Claygate and the Claygate church worship band - a lively and inspiring wake up for a Saturday morning. We'll soon be wishing Philip Plyming "goodbye". However, as it has been announced that he will be the new Warden of Cranmer Hall in St John's College, Durham University.

The Bishop spoke about this year being a year of consolidation and, whilst admitting that this didn't sound very exciting, it was important to build on the initiatives already launched. The Bishop also reminded everyone of the need to respond to his call of "Transforming Church Transforming Lives". By the date of the Synod about 30 responses had been received. There are about 80 parishes in the diocese so there is some work ahead for incumbents and PCCs to achieve his goal by Easter.

During March the church warmly welcomed Holly Barton to be our Children and Families Development Worker. At the same service we all gave Janine Stagg a long round of applause as part of our "thank you" for all the children's work that she has done.

THE FRIENDS QUIZ NIGHT. Congratulations to everyone, especially to Julian Steed, the night's quizmaster, who helped make the Quiz night such a success. The Friends gave the Rector a cheque for £1,000 which more than covered the cost of removing the invasive yew trees on the north side of the church thus exposing the rose window. This gift is in addition to funding the installation of the new fencing along the Worple Road side of the churchyard.

UNDERSTANDING THE JOURNEY WE ARE ON. The two presentations in church about our journey, where we are, and what lies ahead were excellent with over 100 people attending and joining in the discussion. Questions covered big topics as well as where to put hassocks when we have chairs and not pews, and where will the lectern stand. Ian's sketches of how the interior might look were particularly helpful in resolving some of these issues. Over to the PCC now for decisions.

Finally, the Vestry floor is finished. The walls are plastered and we await the final electrical work. It would have been good to have reinstated the room before we welcomed Bishop Jo but this now looks unlikely.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (51) - from the March 2017 magazine

The first Deanery Synod of the year kicked off in style last month by addressing the thorny issue of "Engaging with Refugees". Bishop Jo Bailey Wells - the bishop of Dorking - began the meeting by encouraging us to think about what the Bible teaches is a Christian way to respond to those who find themselves as refugees. Bishop Jo is a terrific speaker and if you get the opportunity to hear her preach, do take it. (She is due to lead our 10.30 service on Sunday 3rd March). Alison Wilks, the Strategic Housing Manager for MVDC, supplied information about what is happening in our local area, and Jo Crookes, the Director of the Diocesan Communities Engagement Team, chaired our reflections and discussion. Just over 80 of us met in the new Dell Centre at St Giles Ashtead for this interesting Synod.

The final item on the agenda was the election of a new Lay Chair, following my resignation after two three-year terms. The election between two candidates revealed that the new Lay Chair is Bill King from Fetcham.

On 11th June the Synod will be Engaging with Education to find out what is happening locally in schools around us, particularly some of the key matters that they are wrestling with, and how we, as churches, can support them in the work that they do.

NIMBY - not in my back yard - will be aired when the Synod hears about new housing developments. Is this a good enough response or is there another way - a Christian way perhaps - of thinking about such things?

Good news about the Vestry floor. The new floor has been laid and waits to be stained and sealed. Plastering the walls is done and we wait for the electrician to reinstall power points and the heater. Are we nearly there yet?

Bad news about the new hedges and trellis fences planted behind the memorial garden walls. One of the fences has been stolen!! Here's some more gardening work for Alison Draper and her squad. There's also recently deposited rubbish to be cleared away.

PCC members have joined together to fund the parish's use of some new software called ChurchApp. For those who love the tech speak, it is a cloud hosted, web based church management system. It is widely use by churches of all sizes and denominations and is a UK developed product that has widespread use in the UK and the USA. Let's look forward to more efficient parish management and thank the members of the PCC for putting their own money behind it.

Here's a [corrected] date for your diary; 26th April in the Parish Hall, beginning at 7.30. It is the Annual Parochial Church Meeting, when you get the chance to vote in the PCC members, deanery reps., churchwardens and sidespersons that you think will do a good job for our parish. It is also the opportunity to thank our hardworking volunteers who have decided that it's time to stand down. You can also have your say about what is happening in our parish, review the finances, and hear the Rector's annual report.

People wishing to stand for any of the elected offices will find nomination forms at the back of the church well before the deadline date.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (50) - from the February 2017 magazine

Did you knit an angel?  Many people did and angels visited Leatherhead and were adopted by residents on Christmas Eve.  Many thanks to “smudger” who emailed comments about them saying “what a wonderful gesture it was to have the knitted angels on the railings of ‘The Rec’ this Christmas Eve, free, for all to take.  So, sincere thanks for such a timely and selfless incentive which has most certainly been well received by the local community”.  And many thanks also to the Revd Lynda Russell for starting all this off.

More people than ever before attended the Crib service, and as more people came in it was literally “standing room only”.  Thanks to Ian for leading this for us and making it such a relevant and friendly service.  At midnight mass we had 141 worshippers, and there were 120 on Christmas morning.  The nine lessons and carols was enjoyed in candlelight by 172 people and Christingle welcomed 124 children and adults.

Work continues with the restoration of the lower vestry: the floor has been lifted and the rotten timbers cleared away, two of the walls have been stripped of plaster up to window sill height, and the room fumigated for 48 hours to completely clear the fungal infection.  We await the installation of new floor timbers and the laying of a new floor before we can bring the room back into use.  Thankfully it now appears that some of the cost may be covered by an insurance claim.

By the time that you read this magazine you should be able to see an improvement to the north side of the churchyard.  Six of the multi stem self-seeded trees – a mixture of common yew, Irish yew and a juniper will have been cut back or removed.  They have damaged graves and grave head stones, and are leaning over the pathway.  This work will reveal the rose window, but may also expose a floodlight stand, in which case some cosmetic rectification work will be done.

We should also have new fencing on the Worple Road side of the churchyard where the existing ivy clad fence is in a very poor state.  The new fence, made of sturdy overlap timber, will be set between concrete posts on concrete gravel boards.  It will run from opposite Hawkins up to the bridle path sign opposite Vine Cottage.  Huge thanks are due to the Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church who are funding the complete work.

The first meeting of the Deanery Synod of this year will be held on Wednesday February 8th in the new Dell Centre building at St Giles Ashtead.  The topic to be debated will be “Engaging with Refugees”.  Our evening will include two presentations, one by Bishop Jo, Suffragan Bishop of Dorking, and one by Alison Wilks, Strategic Housing Manager for Mole Valley District Council.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (49) - from the January 2017 magazine

There is no longer a designated All-Age service on the first Sunday of the month and it will instead be replaced a less formal service for everyone, with music led by the music group occasionally augmented by Holy Rumpus.  If this less formal worship suits you, or you want to try it out, do come along.

There was more activity than usual in the churchyard last month.  In addition to the churchyard working group keeping our churchyard neat and tidy on the first Saturday, a team of pyromaniacs led by Gail Partridge tackled the winter’s big burn up to get rid of the usual mountain of churchyard waste.  As well as the fun of the fire there was the collection of rubbish that had been thrown onto the pile.  There was more than ever this year.  Bottles and tins now empty of strong ale, vodka, and doubtful looking other spirits made the top ten of items to be put into black sacks.  Why were there so many little bags of dog poo?  Are dog owners who exercise their pets in our churchyard unable to take their pet poo home?!

If you walk around the churchyard now, see if you can find the 86 new hedging plants.  Planted out by a planting squad led by Alison Draper you’ll find hawthorn, blackthorn, and wild rose among the native English hedgerow plants.

December’s PCC met in the Parish Hall on a freezing evening on the last day of November.  As well as debate about the state of our finances and fund raising generally, a range of other topics were discussed including support for West Humble chapel to be licensed for marriages.  This will be confirmed to the Bishop’s chaplain, the Revd Mark Heather.  Our new Children and Families worker has been recruited and will start on March 4th.  She is Holly Barton.  It was noted that the toilet twinning photographs and certificates are now displayed in the appropriate lavatories in the parish hall.  See Church Matters for November for more about this.

More than one hundred and twenty adults and children participated in a lovely Christingle service on December the 4th.  Christingles were made, songs were sung, and everyone’s candle “shone in the darkness” of an unlit church as we all sang “Away in a Manger”.  Lots of chocolate was distributed too AND then there was food and drink afterwards in the Parish Hall.  Thanks to Sainsbury’s for donating the Christingle oranges.

Finally, for your New Year resolution, why not join the “eleven o’clock community” and, by yourself wherever you are, or with others say aloud the Lord’s Prayer and contribute to the prayer life of Leatherhead Parish Church.  The bonfire burn up team did it, could you?
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (48) - from the December 2016 magazine

By the time that you read this edition of Church Matters you'll probably be well into your Christmas planning. Cards will have been bought from the "Good Causes" room in the Parish Hall, and decorations put up. I look forward to seeing my Fetcham neighbour's illuminations on his front wall and my next-door neighbour's cheerful reindeer in his front garden. In medieval times I would have been hunting around for a bough of an oak tree to decorate and put in the fireplace as a Yule log or hoping that my friendly cooper would give me an old log, unsuitable for barrel making, to be my Yule log. Best of all would have been the decorated kissing boughs!!

Were you able to come to the All Souls service in the evening of November 2nd? It's a very peaceful time and gives us all the opportunity to give thanks for the lives of family and friends whom we miss and are no longer with us. As the one hundred and eighty names were read out, over fifty members of the congregation lit night lights and stood them on the nave altar. In the silence that followed the candlelight created a special atmosphere as we all left and made our way home.

Our church was well represented at the Deanery Synod meeting in Stoke D'Abernon's new parish hall in October where we considered "how to talk about our faith without losing our friends". The evening was led by the Rev Alan Hulme. The next meeting will be in February when Bishop Jo will lead us to consider the refugee crisis and our response to it. This will be in the Dell Centre in Ashtead. Tell your synod rep if you would like to go.

There's a new version of Monopoly out now. It features Guildford landmarks such as the cathedral. The makers of the game apparently conducted a poll in which Guildford narrowly beat Windsor. There is however no truth in the rumour that HM the Q will be moving home.!!

A great day was had at St Johns Waterloo in early November by those interested in churchyard trees - and that's not an oxymoron! The CofE has some 10,000 churchyards and is one of the largest private owners of trees. The conference was launched by the Bishop of Salisbury, the lead bishop for the environment. Amongst some rather tree hugging topics we also considered some of the environmental, economic and social benefits of trees in churchyards and, more alarmingly, churchyard trees and the law. Trees are good for us and they uplift our spirits; there is research from London boroughs that supports this view.

Finally, when you have finished with your Christmas tree, do to it what is done to the big tree in Trafalgar Square; shred it, compost it and use it for mulch in your garden.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (47) - from the November 2016 magazine

There's some good news and some not so good news. I'll leave it to you to decide which is which.

Firstly, the Harvest Festival. The church looked lovely with flowers arrangements reflecting the season, and a wheatsheaf made from bread, leaning on the nave altar. The congregations were generous with gifts including just over £100 for the Mothers Union "Seeds for Uganda" programme enabling more families to be able to grow food to feed themselves. As of today - 9th of October - the food donations are still to be weighed by the Food Bank, so more news on this later.

The Harvest Supper was popular and the hall was full. We all ate shepherd's pie and peas followed by apple crumble and custard. Thank you to the cooks and organisers. Funds raised came to £380. Our chosen charity was the Toilet Twinning programme run by the Tear Fund, set up help those in desperate poverty to have access to a proper latrine, clean water, and the information they need to be healthy. The funds we raised will enable a block of four "thunder boxes" and two individual "seats of ease" to be installed in a village in Africa. In return we'll get twinning certificates complete with colour photos of our twins, and GPS coordinates so we can look up our twins on Google Maps.

Graham and Ian spoke about the new Diocesan vision and mission programme - see the banner in church or look it up on the diocesan website - and described how this all fits together with our vision for the kind of church we'd like to be.

There is a serious problem with dry rot in the lower vestry and emergency work has begun to deal with it. Firstly, we've had to clear everything out of the vestry, and store the items elsewhere: robes, silverware, service books, cupboards, desk and chairs, candles and communion wine and more. Next, the floor boards were taken out and will be followed by the joists. The plaster along the south wall under the window will have to be stripped off to the height of a metre. All the mess has to be cleared away and the room fumigated/treated. Only then can we think about a new floor.

The really bad news is that there is also some infection in the boiler room which needs to be treated. We are therefore recommended not to use the central heating boilers at present so we have to face up to having a cold church. Don't berate the Rector or the churchwardens about this. It's not their fault. Please just remember to wrap up warm.

And finally we still don't know whether or not the cost of all this rectification work will be covered by our insurance or whether we'll need to have a fundraising effort. There is no more news on this at present but as soon as there is you'll hear it.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (46) - from the October 2016 magazine

Pew 36 where are you? Pew 36 has been moved; why, and where is it now? Pew 36 used to be the last pew on the north side of the nave above the heating grating at the back. Now do you know the one I mean? After one or two near accidents with wheel chairs and buggies squeezing around it and some squashing up at baptisms it's been moved and now lives against the wall of the south aisle offering more seating for tea and coffee drinkers. A couple of red chairs will provide seating for sound box operators.

The last Deanery Synod was held in our parish hall on the 2nd of June when Peter Coles the Diocesan Secretary described how he came to be our diocesan secretary and the challenges he faces. He's a good speaker and showed how his faith had decided him to move from a senior job at the BBC to our diocese. There was a good attendance and NADFAS organised the audio visual part of Peter's talk. There'll shortly be a poster up on the churchwardens' notice board about October's meeting when the Revd Alan Hulme, Director of the Diocesan Parish Development and Evangelism Team, will lead an evening on "how to talk about your faith and still keep your friends". Talking about our faith to others seems to me to be a powerful way to attract new worshippers, so it could be a useful evening. This meeting will be in the new hall at Stoke D'Abernon.

The Synod kicks off its 2017 programme in February when Bishop Jo Wells will be our guest speaker.

As I write this in church on the first day of Heritage Weekend I am constantly - and happily - interrupted by visitors asking about the interior of the church. What's the oldest part of the church? How old are the stained glass windows? How long have people worshipped here? Thankfully, one person asked about Sunday's services!! Tea, coffee, and cake were offered to visitors. Bright sunshine, beautiful flower arrangements, and interested visitors; thank you Sue Roberts and everyone for making our celebration of Heritage Weekend just lovely.

On the subject of visitors, we've also had some little brown creatures interested in the coffee time biscuits, and our Fairtrade stock. The battle to persuade them to scamper off continues.
Some more news about churchyard trees. Sue Roberts is meeting Treeline to discuss the removal up of some of the self-seeded trees and the tidying up of the overgrown yew trees. Donald will attend a churchyard trees conference in November sponsored by the Conservation Foundation and the Church of England.

Finally, the New Future fund benefited from a bequest from the estate of the late Maureen Henderson, who expressed the wish that any residue from her estate should be given to the parish of St Mary and St Nicholas. A cheque has been paid into the New Future fund.

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (45) - from the September 2016 magazine

GENEROUS GIVING - A Way of Living. You will remember the recently completed stewardship campaign to encourage regular givers to church funds to reconsider their giving and - if they can - increase it and join the new Parish Giving scheme. Alan Fleming reports that 13 new people joined the Parish Giving scheme, including four people transferring from the old standing order scheme. The net increase in giving, including the Gift Aid reclaim, will amount to an increase of £4,395 in a full year. So, thanks to everyone who made this extra contribution possible.

CYCLE SUNDAY this year was on Sunday July 31st and many people made extra efforts to attend church, and we also welcomed worshippers from other churches who came to us. The said Holy Communion service was celebrated for 15 worshippers and there were 90 at the Parish Communion. So, well done to the faithful souls who braved the road closures and over 25,000 cyclists.
In addition there were many watchers and supporters nearby and thought is now being given to next year's event so that churchgoers and supporters can join together and the church can go out to the wider world of cycling. An outdoor family service and food so that we really welcome people who don't normally come to our church has been suggested.

During August preliminary surveying work was carried out on the church building. Robin Ault and Phil Shears of the Downland Partnership were here on Tuesday and Wednesday 9th and 10th August, using the latest laser scanners to produce electronic three dimensional images which will be used to generate two dimensional plans and elevations. These will cover the outside and inside of the building, and will be used by our architect. It is hoped that some of them will be put on to the churchwarden's noticeboard. Also on the notice board will be a copy of Tree Line's tree survey, which is needed as part of the preparatory work for reordering the church.

And there will be an archaeological desk based assessment and a site investigation. If possible the dates of any "digs" will be published on the weekly news sheet so that we will all have the opportunity to see what is discovered. So far we're keeping "Time Team" at a distance!

Finally, you'll notice that Sue Roberts has given Church Matters back to me. Thank you Sue - you worked very hard on it.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (44) - from the July 2016 magazine

The most important news for July is that our new curate, Ian Stonehouse, will be ordained on 3rd July, in the morning, at Charterhouse School Chapel, Godaiming, and we shall look forward to greeting him at Evensong in our church on that same evening. We extend a heartfelt welcome to him, to Beverley, and to their son Kirk. Welcome!

The month of June saw celebrations both local and National. The weather held for Beth and Damon's beautiful wedding and for the Queen's 90th Birthday celebrations, which in our Parish took the form of an extra colourful and busy "Martha's Market" and the Open Gardens Sunday. Leatherhead Residents' Association and The Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church organised an excellent day and refreshments were served in the Parish Church throughout the afternoon.

The Parish Funding Scheme "Generous Giving" (PGS) was launched on 22nd May and ran until 19th June. Trifold leaflets were circulated with response forms attached, together with booklets to explain the new scheme by which parishioners can financially support the Parish Church on a regular basis. It is the regularity of giving that is so vital in the running of the church; donations which are received, regardless of attendance, allow for planning and expenditure for all our many and various "housekeeping" needs. There has been a very encouraging response, with 22 agreeing to increase their giving, 20 [in addition to the original 11] joining the PGS, 7 who are unable to increase at this time, and 5 who do not wish to join the PGS. We are so grateful to all who were able to respond and it remains open and ongoing for anyone who would still like to participate. Our special thanks go to Linda Hauxwell, Donald Yeates, and Anne Thomson for organising and co-ordinating the scheme.

On Wednesday 15th June the PCC unanimously approved the fee proposal of our project architect, John Bailey, for the re-ordering of the church. The exact plan is not yet finalised, but phase one will be the church site, based on the footprint of the Concept Plans submitted and displayed previously for general view. John Bailey will put together a design team, and Martin Cole has offered to be our Project Co-ordinator. He will assemble a Project Team which will be in three streams: a) Building, b) Finance (including Grant Applications), c) Communications (press releases, progress reports

If anyone has relevant skills they would like to offer it would be of great value to the teams: please contact Martin Cole. Before we can even begin to put any plans in operation we have to have a full archaeological survey of the site: this will begin with the excavation of five archaeological test pits - four within the church and one in the churchyard on the south side of the building. Hopefully it will not bring to light any ancient areas that cannot be disturbed - but a nice Saxon gold hoard could be useful at this point! The future is exciting and "Church Matters" will plan to keep everyone up to date with progress.
The Church Wardens

Church Matters (43) - June 2016 [there were none in the May 2016 Parish Mgazine]

"June is bustin' out all over" as the song goes, and we are galloping along, trying to keep up. Well, more of a stately glide than a gallop, but advancing and changing nevertheless. Whilst moving and adapting we are also trying to hold on to many of the values and traditions of the past; not an easy feat.

It is with great delight we welcome our new Curate, Ian Stonehouse, his wife Beverly, and their son Kirk, as they move into the parish and into 52, Woodbridge Avenue. This is the church property in North Leatherhead where Ian will be among parishioners who live at a distance from the Parish Church, giving them a closer point of contact. Martin Cole has done a marvellous job of ensuring the property will be a delightful home and workplace for Ian and the family.

On a more practical level, there is, as usual, a certain amount of the more usual "bustin' out" in the Parish Church. Gale force winds earlier in the Spring dislodged a ridge tile above the church porch and one of the huge slate tiles above the lych-gate. I would ask you to be aware, whilst we are having them assessed and repaired, of possible hazards.

All Saints' Church has recently undergone its Quinquennial Inspection. There is little short term action required, but the paving to the rear of the building needs immediate improvement and this is in hand. A Faculty has been granted for the construction of a small fence around the grass seating-area at All Saints' Cafe, but it comes with the condition that it must meet with the approval of Surrey Highways. Hopefully it will all come together, because it has taken well over a year to reach this point. Do continue to support the Cafe: the coffee and teas are excellent.

Talking of fences, the one in the Churchyard, adjacent to Worple Road, to which I referred in the April Magazine, must now be dealt with. However, if we are to expect the same difficulties experienced with the one at All Saints' it could take some time. We hope a Faculty will not be required as it will be a replacement, not a new construction.

This month sees some delightful events at the Parish Church, including the wedding of Graham and Nicky's daughter Beth to Damon. This is closely followed by the celebrations for the Queen's Official Birthday and the Open Gardens event. Let's hope we have glorious weather throughout and a truly happy and blessed month of June.
Sue Roberts

Church Matters (42) - April 2016 [there were none in the March 2016 Parish Magazine]

The Lord is Risen - Hallelujah! I hope you all had a wonderful Easter and were able to join our many and varied services and activities, from Passion Sunday to Easter Sunday. It is, after all, the most important time of the Christian year.

There were one or two slight changes this year.

We continued the "Kart of Kindness", celebrating God's extravagant love, on the Saturday before Palm Sunday with Churches Together in Leatherhead, in the town centre precinct - a popular and practical event, which was well received and supported.

Maundy Thursday evening saw the introduction of "Stations of the Cross" in our Parish Church, and the Good Friday Walk was a silent walk of Reflection, with Churches Together. We started at Christchurch URC and walked quietly through the Town, following the Cross, finishing in the Parish Hall for refreshments, including hot cross buns!

The church was full for the Easter Day services, one of the most moving of which was the 7am "Striking the New Fire". This year it coincided with the clocks going forward, so we really were there at dawn, it being 6am in reality. This was followed by the wonderful fellowship of a cooked breakfast in the Parish Hall. If you have never attended any of these more innovative services I would strongly invite you to consider them for the future; they add a special dimension to the wonderful celebration of Easter.

With the arrival of April hopefully comes Spring. We had our "Big Spring Clean" back in early March, so I hope all the hard work put in by the cleaning team members and our extra helpers is fully appreciated. Everywhere certainly looks brighter as we move towards the better weather and possibly additional visitors to our lovely church. On 20th of this month we hold our Annual Parochial Church Meeting, so please ensure your name is on the Parish Electoral Roll if you wish to participate in the voting process.

Apart from the sensor light at the Lower Vestry, there are no immediate repairs pending within the building, but there is no room for complacency! This unusual state of affairs is purely because many of our problems are on hold until future plans come into play. Watch this space!

The Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church have given the PCC a cheque for £1,000 towards the upkeep of the Church grounds, which is an enormous and generous help, and they have also offered to pay for the new fencing erected at the north side of the churchyard. At some time in the future the fence running adjacent to Worple Road will have to be replaced and it is a great relief to have a body like the Friends to support us. It is not just the church members but the whole of Leatherhead who should be grateful for this support, which helps us to preserve the past, sustain the present and plan for the future of this ancient building.
Sue Roberts

Church Matters (41) - February 2016

With February come lighter evenings and the prospect of Spring, though this winter has already been topsy-turvy, so anything might happen. The daffodils were out in December, Easter is early this year [27th March] and we could well be celebrating Harvest by mid-May! However, we are keeping our special days at the normal times, so there is no cause for alarm.

We celebrated Candlemas on the last Sunday of January and for this reason the Christmas floral arrangements, candles, and Christmas trees remained in church until that time. The team of flower arrangers did a wonderful job of keeping everything looking fresh and beautiful for many weeks, and everyone will join me, I know, in thanking them for the wonderful work they do throughout the year. This year each of our three Christmas trees were decorated by a different church group: The Mothers' Union, the Home Groups, and Children's Church. Thank you all for an excellent display. The Bell ringers have already expressed interest in helping next Christmas and I would welcome any other offers.

Our "running repairs" list continues. Most recently it has been the mending of broken fences at the far corner of the churchyard, on the Worple Road side, and the time is rapidly approaching when the whole of the fence adjacent to Worple Road will need to be replaced; at the moment it is largely held up by the ivy which covers it. David, Frank, and Steven continue to work hard as our voluntary "Churchyard Working Party" - largely unsung and often overlooked in the scheme of things, but we are immensely grateful to them. Later we would be pleased for any volunteers to help with the bonfire which must soon take place in the churchyard.

The Quinquennial Review for All Saints' Church is due this year. We are also still awaiting the outcome of the Faculty application for the fence at All Saints'. The system is due to be simplified, I am told; I live in hope.

A conservatory has been built at 52, Woodbridge Ave, in readiness for our new curate and his family, who are due to join us in June. In the meantime our three young temporary tenants have had to cope with a builders yard, a collapsed boundary fence, a broken boiler and no heating/hot water, fence rebuilding, gate repair, and workmen; not to mention a Warden popping in at all hours to oversee things. Hopefully all this is now remedied. "If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?"
The Churchwardens

Church Matters (40) - Jan 2016
We begin the New Year with high hopes and happy expectations that our faith in the future will be justified. Christmas saw our lovely church packed with worshippers at many of our services: the Christingle Service, Nine Lessons and Carols, the Crib Service, Midnight Mass, the Christmas Day Family Service, and the special services held by some of the local Schools in Leatherhead. There was also the lovely LeDFAS Concert, which brought many new people to participate in the life, and enjoy the beauty of, St Mary and St Nicholas Church.

As with any family, our Church family saw changes in 2015. We bade a sad farewell to some much loved members, but we have also been able to welcome many new friends and the cycle of the life of our church continues to constantly evolve.

At the start of this New Year there are several people deserving of our special thanks. For the past few months Margaret Jones has continued to ensure the publication of this magazine, without the help of an editor. It is a huge task and we are immensely grateful to her; hopefully someone will come forward to assist her. There are many voices saying we must keep a paper edition, but few volunteers. [We hope that most of our readers will have filled in, and returned, the Magazine Survey included with the December issue.] The magazine is printed in the Parish Office and Nicky Osborne really could do with some volunteers for the print run.

Then there is the distribution. For many years this was headed by our late dear friend, Joyce Salsbury. During much of that time she had been helped by Sheila Sutherland and Madeleine Lear, but both these ladies feel it is now time to step down. We thank them both for the time and effort they have put in, often with most of us unaware of their work. Now, however, we need replacements!
Oh dear! Continually asking for volunteers feels almost as bad [but not quite] as asking for money. That, dear reader, will be a future joy!

So what else has been happening in the last few weeks? Within the bounds of Church housekeeping, there is an ongoing programme. It is hoped we can approach these winter months with relative confidence in the fabric of the building. Sheila Sutherland continues to nurse the boilers and keep us warm, whilst also keeping the engineers busy. The electrics have been sorted, although there remains a feeling of "fingers crossed", because, although tested and mended, the system is not really up to 21st Century standard. However, it is due to the efforts and generosity of "The Friends" that these necessary bills can be paid and we are very grateful to them.

The gutters of both the Parish Church and the Parish Hall have been cleaned and should cope with any future rainfall, barring a monsoon [several of the down pipes, you will recall, were replaced last year as part of the Quinquennial repairs], and now that the trees are bare there shouldn't be a problem with leaves.

Talking of trees, the old, decaying tree at the rear of the church was felled with speed and efficiency, using a cherry picker, thus negating any future worry of parts falling either into the churchyard or on to the municipal gardens, and giving rise to unexpected insurance claims.
The Churchwardens

Church Matters (39) Dec 2015

Lights!  Cameras!  Action!

Once the baton of Church Warden is handed to someone else, I think I shall offer my services to Blackpool Illuminations, as our own church “illuminations” seem to afford a continual learning curve.  First the lights in the South aisle needed attention; then it was the wall-plug sockets; now it's the floodlights.  Anyone passing our lovely building in early November could not have failed to notice it was plunged into darkness. 

This is now partly remedied and we have the comforting sight of our church shining brightly against the night sky once more.  Unfortunately, all is not good news.  Several of the outdoor fittings are beyond repair, so some of the lights still do not work.  More expense, I fear, as this recent problem is not linked to work previously carried out; but renewing the other fittings will have to be put on hold for the time being.

However, a light of a different kind begins to glow, just below the horizon.  At the end of October, the two Church Wardens attended a training event on “Preparing and Writing Funding Applications” organised by the Diocese of Guildford, in conjunction with Surrey County Council and Surrey Community Action.  The event was inspiring, as well as of great practical help.  Three personal presentations showed us just what can be achieved by faith, determination, and sheer hard work, raising huge sums of money for their particular needs.  Our particular need is our “New Future” and the good news is our Grant Application Overview is written and David Ireland is casting an expert eye over it, before it is submitted to the Heritage Lottery Fund.  Let's fan that glow into a blaze!

Sue Roberts

Church Matters (38) for November 2015 - from the November 2015 magazine

There is good news and bad news: the good news is that the lights in the South Aisle are now working, and the new fittings use only 40 watts -whereas the old ones used between 3000 and 4000 watts. The sooner we are able to convert all the electrics to modern usage the better.

The bad news is that a separate circuit, governing some of the power sockets, was failing, due to a fault in the old pyro cable; the circuit worked sometimes for 20minutes, sometimes for 3 minutes, before tripping the fuse. This has now being fixed, although at the time of writing the socket by the Music Group area is still not 100%. All these problems add to the expense of the church maintenance. Unfortunately, over the years, when these things happen one is constrained by cost and can only deal with those items that have to be fixed immediately. Consequently, there is always the danger that something which was felt "would last for the moment", for example the pyro cable, catches up with us and eventually has to be dealt with.

There is better news concerning the South Chancel wall. On Monday evening, 12th October, the Church Wardens and the Chairman of the Friends met our Diocesan Inspecting Architect, John Bailey, to discuss the problem of damp. As suspected, the down pipe, hopper, and gutter were blocked, and John cleared it of a mass of debris, including a small sapling! The water will now hopefully drain down the inside of the pipe, rather than cascade down the wall. On the subject of the outer wall, several people have shown concern that flints have been removed and rough stone left exposed. Not so. The rough stone is, in fact, probably the oldest piece of wall in the church, dating from the 11th Century and should really be a point of historical interest, pointed out in our Guide Book! It has been treated with three coats of lime wash, which allows it to "breathe", and this will be repeated in about ten years' time, and the colour will gradually weather.

The inside of the South Chancel wall has suffered from water ingress and the columns in the Sedilia, being of Bath stone, have begun to crumble. The inner columns of Reigate sandstone were unfortunately painted black at some point, trapping moisture inside. We now have to wait for the area to dry out, but this could take up to two years. As our Inspecting Architect pointed out, caring for a medieval building is an ongoing process, but using the right materials of a conservation standard will be vital in the future. He did add that for a building of such great age it was in reasonable shape!

On a much more cheerful note, this month we have welcomed our new Children and Families worker, Ester Van Dijk, who comes from Holland. She will work with Children's Church, Messy Church, and Trinity School, and liaise with families both within our church family and, hopefully, beyond. We all hope she will have a happy and fruitful time with us.

Sue Roberts

Church Matters (37) for October 2015 - from the October 2015 magazine

At the time of writing we have just completed Heritage Open Days, when our church was open to visitors for four days. The church looked beautiful, thanks to the wonderful team of Flower Ladies, whose interpretations of the "Words and Music" theme set the scene so well.

We were also visited by teams of bell ringers for an hour on Saturday morning and again in the afternoon. A huge "thank you" to everyone who helped make the event so successful. Even the weather played its part; the sunshine was certainly a factor in drawing over a hundred visitors during the four days.

The weather has been a factor in another, far less pleasant way. For some time there has been a worrying patch of damp on the interior south wall of the Chancel. The quinquennial repairs were intended to put right the ongoing problems to which a church of this age is constantly prone, but torrential rain in mid-September brought to light the fact of a seriously defective drainpipe, hopper, and guttering on the outer chancel wall. This would seem to be exacerbating the interior problems and efforts are being made to put it right as soon as possible.

Our New Future plans are moving onwards. There has been a lot of basic groundwork to cover before we can actually achieve concrete developments, but the stage has now been reached where we can begin to make solid plans. After the concept, the initial plan, the DAC consultation, the DAC agreement in principle, the consultation with the congregation, the reworking of plans with the architect, the re-submission to the DAC and the architectural feasibility of new layouts, we have reached the stage whereby we can consider funding. A meeting was held of the Standing Committee, plus representatives of the Finance Committee and PCC, with Revd David Ireland, who is an experienced Fund Raiser. His advice proved invaluable and preliminary applications will now be put together.

For some time we have been without lighting in the south aisle where coffee is served. This is because each time the bulbs are replaced they blow within a very short time, due to a faulty circuit. The circuit is now going to be rewired and the problem should hopefully be solved.

Tree work begins in the churchyard on 20th October. A large, dangerously unsafe tree needs to be felled, next to the wall of the municipal garden. It requires a "cherry picker" to do this, as it is unsafe to fell in the usual manner. Two other trees will be trimmed for safety reasons: one has a dislodged branch, the other is impeding a neighbouring property.
Sue Roberts

Church Matters (36) for September 2015 -  from the September 2015 magazine

To what extent does Church matter, to you, to me, to all of us? Is it pivotal to our lives, the core of our existence, the very essence of our Christian faith? If it is, then we all need to work together to ensure we can maintain the Church, both as a faithful body of followers of Jesus Christ and as a building in which we can manifest our faith. Our New Future Plans aim to further the former, but our old present dilemma is one that needs facing here and now. The present dilemma is one of "housekeeping". We, as the congregation, simply do not provide sufficient housekeeping to keep this beautiful, ancient, venerated building functioning. The "congregation" includes everyone who uses the church for worship, for Baptism, Weddings, Funerals, social gatherings, special festivals; in short, everyone who expects this building to be here as and when it is needed.

It is perhaps not realised by everyone that the offerings in the collection plate and the planned giving are what pay the bills for the upkeep of the church. This upkeep includes our Parish Share: £73,000 we pay annually to the Diocese; and the bills for heating, lighting, maintenance and repairs; currently around £50,000 annually. Quite eye-watering sums. We are indebted to the Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church for their magnificent support in helping to pay for extra, unexpected expenditure, but it is we, the people of the congregation and the town, who should shoulder the main burden.

A large number of people give regularly, either weekly or monthly and this is of great benefit in planning expenditure. If you already do this, a HUGE thank you! If not, perhaps you might consider it? It is these donations which keep our church functioning and at present we simply do not give enough. We plan to have a renewed "Giving Initiative" at some time in the near future, but this somewhat uncomfortable subject is one that must be addressed sooner, rather than later. We cannot let "later" become "too late".
The Churchwardens

Church Matters (35) for August 2015 - from the August 2015 magazine

I am sure that everyone will want to join in thanking Chris Stagg for all the excellent work he has done with Children's Church over the years. He and Janine have been marvellous leaders, helping and inspiring the younger generation on their Faith journey, and Janine will continue to do so, but Chris now feels the time is right for him to retire. In fact, he "retired" a year ago, but has continued to help establish new members to continue the work. Thank you, Chris, for your time, dedication, leadership, and inspiration to so many for the last twenty years.

We also congratulate Matthew Waters who is taking up a Post Graduate place on the Distance Learning Course at Dundee University, in Archives and Records Management. Matthew, as you know, currently edits this magazine, but his greatly increasing workload will mean he cannot continue beyond September. We greatly appreciate his help and hard work and thank him for stepping into this important role.

We will now be without an Editor for the Parish Magazine. If there is anyone who feels they could take on this task please contact the Rector or the Churchwardens for more information about what is involved.
Sue Roberts

Report from the Parochial Church Council: from the July 2015 magazine

The new PCC met for the first time on 27th May.  Jane Summerfield, who had not stood for re-election at the APCM, was co­ opted to serve as a member of the PCC up to the next APCM.

Nick de Boer, the Chairman of the Parish Church Hall Committee, attended the meeting to seek approval for the purchase of new chairs to replace the present chairs which had become shabby and were starting to damage the floor through being dragged. Nick had obtained a sample chair which had been on display for some time in the hall for users to try out. However, it was noted that the sample chair was no lighter than the present ones and one PCC member, who volunteered to sit on the chair for the duration of the meeting (some two hours), reported at the end of the meeting that he had found it uncomfortable.
Nick de Boer was asked to obtain firm quotes for 175 chairs in a range of colours. It was made clear that any replacement chairs must form part of New Future Phase 1.

Nick de Boer also reported on an approach by Hague Investments seeking to lease 20 car park spaces for use by business personnel in place of spaces behind the shops in Church Street which would be lost as a result of proposed redevelopment. The spaces would not be reserved but it was thought likely that business staff would arrive before the shoppers or hall users. PCC members were concerned about their ability to sub-let and, while there might be financial advantages, these might be outweighed by the effect on hall bookings if three quarters of the car park spaces were no longer available. Two PCC members, John Hampton and Martin Farrell, volunteered to join the negotiating team to represent the PCC's interests. If you have views on this, please speak to the churchwardens or any member of the PCC.

The PCC also received financial reports and updates on parish activities.
Anne Thomson, PCC Secretary

Church Matters (34) for June 2015 - from the June 2015 Magazine

The Annual Parish Council meeting is dealt with elsewhere in this month's magazine and we now have a new PCC and welcome Martin Farrell as Churchwarden. However I would like to take this opportunity to thank two of our previous wardens, Frances Presley and Peter Leith, for their valuable help with Sunday services over the last few months; no mean feat, as they are both members of our Choir and have had to juggle these two vital roles. We are enormously blessed in having Sheila Sutherland as our Assistant Churchwarden, whose knowledge, good humour, and sheer hard work has been and continues to be immeasurable, especially as we are currently without a second Assistant Warden. Thank you.

Onwards and upwards! Monday 11th May saw the Archdeacons' Visitation of Churchwardens and Admission to Office at St. Martin's, Dorking. This is an annual service of Commission and Blessing for the wardens of all parishes in our Deanery, supported by their Incumbents. It is both a moving and a serious occasion as well as being an official requirement.

Talking of "Upwards" there has been a fair amount of looking literally in that direction recently. A full electrical survey, lasting for two days, was carried out by Buchanan and Curwen (Leatherhead) Ltd. This is a specified condition of our Insurance Policy as well as a Health and Safety issue. It necessitates checking all Circuits as well as climbing high to the Nave and Tower lights, and hopefully will explain to us why the lights in the South Aisle are so temperamental. These latter have been "mended" on at least three occasions in the past year, but still fail when most needed.

Our second upward move has been into the trees of our Churchyard - well, not literally, but a survey has now been completed of the status and condition of every tree in that area. It has been a huge and comprehensive survey, again to comply with Quinquennial and Health and Safety requirements, resulting in every tree being tagged, recorded, and assessed by species, age, height, spread, vigour, life expectancy, condition, and individual future recommendation. As an immediate result there are two trees needing urgent attention: one has a snapped and dislodged branch; the other is split and decaying with several dead branches. The survey will now be presented to the PCC for discussion and action. This initial work has been carried out by Treeline Services Ltd of Dorking, one of three companies to give quotes.

The scaffolding around the Church has been removed, but there remains a certain amount of builders' rubble. Action is being taken in this area. The revised refurbishment plans have gone for costing and the PCC awaits the outcome. Unfortunately, at the time of writing, there remains a brick missing at the steps in front of the West door. It will probably be quicker to mend it ourselves, but Mole Valley has the responsibility. On the subject of bricks, a lorry backed into and dislodged bricks from the entrance wall of All Saints Church and this, too, will hopefully soon be rectified. Perhaps part of the remit of a Churchwarden should include a City and Guilds brick-laying course!
Sue Roberts

Church Matters (33) for May 2015 - from the May 2015 Magazine

After a truly memorable and joyous Easter the Church year settles to the quieter run up to Pentecost on Sunday 24th May. At Easter there was a joining together of tradition and innovation; a case of "Something old, something new, something borrowed ..." even something "blue" - in that the skies remained blue most of the time. The "old" was retained in the Palm Sunday procession from the Town to the Church, the Lent Groups' supper, the deeply moving 'Last Hour' on Good Friday, and the 7.00am Striking the New Fire on Easter Day, prior to 8.00 am Communion. The "new" included a wonderful Easter Extravaganza in the Town Centre on the Saturday before Palm Sunday, organised by Churches Together in Leatherhead, which sought to make the message of Easter accessible to a wider public than it was felt the Good Friday Walk of Witness had been in the past. And what did we "borrow"? Well, this was a fascinating Seder meal, traditionally part of the Jewish Passover, explained to us and shared with us by a Jewish family on Maundy Thursday. All in all, Holy Week was truly memorable and meaningful this year.

By the time this edition of the magazine appears we will have held our Annual Parochial Church Meeting and established the new PCC for the coming year. It is a fitting and appropriate time to thank Donald Yeates for the enormous contribution he has made to the life of our Church. We shall greatly miss his knowledge and expertise in so many areas. The good news is that he continues to make an excellent recovery and is able to join us at Church services; he will also continue to be a Deanery Synod representative.

Among the "housekeeping" items of our Church, various necessary tasks are underway. The electrical inspection of all lighting and wiring began on 15th April and the Churchyard Tree Survey began on May 1st. This survey may lead to some trimming and tidying of trees, but is mostly a health and safety issue required as part of the Quinquennial Inspection. Hopefully, the scaffolding at various points of the church exterior will also be removed shortly. There is also a plan to have a bonfire at the top left corner of the Churchyard of all the cuttings and rubbish cleared by our excellent churchyard volunteers, before the pile becomes too huge; it was set for 25th April, but this is totally dependent on the weather, so fingers crossed.

A small word of caution: if you use the steps leading from the park at the front of the Church be aware that a brick is missing from the lower step. Mole Valley has been notified, as it is their responsibility. In similar vein, there were two large broken paving stones in front of the church lych-gate, but Surrey County Council acted within three hours of my phone call and made them safe. It can be done!
Sue Roberts

Church Matters (32) for April 2015 - from the April 2015 Magazine

Easter is here, the clocks have gone forward, and Spring has well and truly arrived. The first week of April sees the final preparations for the joyous celebration of Easter, after the sombre events of Holy Week. Church Watch began on Monday 30th March and our beautiful Church is open during the week for everyone to enjoy. Arriving at this happy juncture has meant a lot of hard work behind the scenes, from many quarters.

During the month of March many basic "housekeeping" tasks had to be performed. Ecclesiastical Insurance carried out their Risk Management Inspection and as a result we had two areas under Priority 3 and one under Priority 4 to remedy. These are both at the lower end of a scale that begins at "Urgent" and continues down through 1-5. The Priority 3 actions have already been concluded i.e. the Portable Appliance Testing and the Lightning Conductor Maintenance; the Priority 4 - Electrical Inspection - is ongoing, to be completed by July 2015. The fire extinguishers of the Parish Church, the Parish Hall, and All Saints Church also had to be checked, resulting in yet another necessary, but expensive, outlay.

The category two work of the Quinquennial repairs has now been completed and the current bill paid. We owe an enormous debt of gratitude to The Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church who have contributed the magnificent amount of £14,458.17 to cover the cost. The Church is so very lucky to have such a wonderfully supportive group to help care for this ancient building and we are most grateful to them. Due to a new scheme we are also able to apply to reclaim the VAT on the work, which amounts to a further £2,891.63; making the full invoice total of £17,349.80.

If you notice a mightier beam from the windows, a brighter gleam from the lectern, and a lighter sheen on carpets, floors and woodwork, it is because an enthusiastic band of volunteers did their utmost to clean, scour, and polish the inside of the building on 14th March, ready for Easter. Everyone worked so hard and so willingly for the benefit of us all.

Last month we wished a happy anniversary to B@titude; this month we add birthday greetings to LYP for their excellent 10 years of growth, helping and inspiring many of the young people of Leatherhead. All Saints is a vibrant and vital part of our Church family and continues to expand year on year.

Sue Roberts

Church Matters (31) for March 2015 - from the March 2015 Magazine

The most significant matter this month is that we have a new Bishop. The Inauguration of the Rt. Revd. Andrew Watson as tenth Bishop of Guildford took place in Guildford Cathedral on Saturday 28th February, 2015. We all welcome him, and perhaps we can look forward to meeting him at some future time.

Easter is early this year - Easter Sunday is on 5th April - so March is a month of busy preparation. The Lent Groups are in full swing, having started on 23rd February, and plans are underway for our ecumenical events in Holy Week.

Churches Together in Leatherhead arrange and lead our joint participation and this year they have decided on a change from previous years. It was felt that the Good Friday Walk of Witness involved quite a lot of walking, but very little witnessing, in that there was hardly any contact with the general public, and there are too few people in Leatherhead on Good Friday. This year the plan is to make a much greater impact by holding an event in the morning of the Saturday before Palm Sunday and to create a new, lively, vibrant, colourful, and inclusive declaration of our faith. Do come and join in: details will be published shortly. In the meantime, a date for your diary - Saturday 28th March - 11am - Leatherhead Town Centre.

As Graham announced in Church on Sunday February 1st the candidate chosen from the recent interviews to be our Children and Families Worker has found she is unable to take up the post, so we continue in faith to search for the right person. The next interviews will probably be in May and this is something we all need to engage with and pray for.

Ongoing, also, are the plans for the reordering of the church building. At this stage there are many ends to tie and avenues to explore. As with the swan, the emblem of our town, all seems to be drifting slowly and aimlessly, but I assure you, there is determined activity below the surface!

Two points concerning our wider church family. Once a month we join with the Methodist and United Reformed Churches in an evening service at the Methodist Church. It is an uplifting and friendly service, with prayer, music and songs, followed by refreshments and a chance to talk with each other, and perhaps discover a different and valid form of worship. Everyone is most welcome.

Finally, let us all join in wishing B@titude a very Happy Anniversary; they have been going from strength to strength for 10 years now, and we all send them our very best wishes for their ongoing success

Sue Roberts

Church Matters (30) for February 2015 - from the February 2015 Magazine

I wonder what the title of this monthly column means to you, the reader? It was the brainchild of our Churchwarden, Donald Yeates, as a way of communicating events, ideas, and issues within the church, so that everyone could feel included in the everyday matters which ultimately affect us all; but it also has the dual meaning in that our Church really matters to us all.

At the moment, Donald is unable to carry out this role, but he continues to make steady progress. We hugely miss his knowledge, expertise, humour, and the sheer hard work with which he carried out so many tasks behind the scenes, and we miss seeing him and Jan in church. We also greatly miss Lorraine Willmott, our Sacristan. Lorraine is also progressing well and we hope it won't be too long before we see her smiling face back in church.

However, we are indeed a Family and in their absence there has been wonderful support for the Wardens and Sacristans: Sheila and John Sutherland, Bill Peetz, and Martin Farrell have taken on many extra duties and are a huge help. We are also delighted that Frances Presley and Peter Leith are going to help with Churchwarden duties. Thank you so much, everyone.

Christmas 2014 saw a slight change in that we had three smaller Christmas trees, replacing the one large tree: one in the Chancel, one in the South aisle, and one in the Tower. Each tree was to be decorated by a different group from within the church and this year they were beautifully decorated by the Choir, the Sidespeople teams, and Children's Church. Hopefully this will become a feature of our Christmas decorations, and already other groups are expressing an interest. Only nine months to go! We are also grateful to the people who donated a total of £42 towards the £288 cost of the extra candles used at Christmas. Candles are of course purchased all the year round, for liturgical use, but at Christmas we use extra for decorative purposes and they are always greatly admired.

As we move into the month of February we celebrate Candlemas - the Presentation of Christ in the Temple. This was when Mary and Joseph took the infant Jesus to the Temple, and for this reason the Crib tableau remains at the Nave Altar. It is then removed and the church calendar turns towards Lent.

At the time of writing, the Quinquennial work on the outside of the building is drawing to a close. There is a possibility that the scaffolding may remain in place after completion, because the builders and the scaffolding firm are separate businesses. The diocesan architect has to inspect the work before finalisation and then will report to the PCC.

Sue Roberts

Church Matters (29) for January 2015 - from the January 2015 Magazine

2014 ended on a high note, with some wonderful and joyous Christmas Services, and it was lovely to see our beautiful church in full use by so many people and decorated so gloriously. From Christingle through to the New Year, via concerts, family services, early Communion, midnight Mass, baptisms, weddings, quiet prayer, coffee times and candlelight, we have been able to welcome so many people of all ages.

Our Church family has grown and changed, as families do, and we are delighted for Christine, Kuhan, and Theo that their baby twins arrived safely on 25th November. We look forward to meeting Joshua and his sister Joshika soon and welcoming them to church. We were also delighted that Holly and Ben had such beautiful weather for their wedding, and trust that Graham and Nicky adjust happily to the role of in-laws! Donald continues to make progress and Jan is taking good care of him, but he must take it slowly, now that he is home. We all send him our best wishes.

The New Year is a time for looking to the future and we are on course for making our own Parish future exciting and rewarding. The Quinquennial repairs are well under way and the Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church have generously offered to help with the cost of repairs. I went with our architect, John Bailey, to view the extent of the work in progress and I must say one has a very different view of things from the top of scaffolding. It also showed me just how skilled, careful, and knowledgeable are the builders carrying out the work. Hopefully the work will be finished by the end of the month.

In general the normal cost of running, heating, lighting, and maintaining our church is reliant on the giving of our congregation; that's you and me. What we put in the collection is basically what keeps us viable, so perhaps one of our New Year resolutions can be to increase that amount as we are able. Just using a gift aid envelope makes a huge difference, providing an extra 25p for every £1 given, - "Simples!".

The consultation documents for the plans for refurbishment have been submitted to the Architect and the next step is to produce costed plans. At this stage, progress seems slow, but there is continual work ongoing. Work is ongoing, also, in finding a Family and Children's Worker. The closure date for applications was the end of December and we look ahead with confidence.

The heating problems have finally been sorted out and the boilers are functioning properly. It took seven visits and a great many phone calls, but we at last have a warmer church building just as the coldest weather is likely to hit. I wish you a very happy and healthy New Year!

Sue Roberts

Church Matters (28) for December 2014 - from the December 2014 Magazine

As most people will be aware our Church Warden Donald Yeates has been ill and in Hospital. The good news is that he is improving, but progress is slow and at the time of writing he is still in hospital. He has asked me to say how much he has appreciated the cards, letters, good wishes, and prayers of everyone, and that the kindness shown by so many is helping in his recovery. He and Jan remain constantly in the thoughts and prayers of us, his Church family, and we hope he will soon be well enough to return home.

We have continued to have difficulties with the heating in Church. The engineer has called and one of the two boilers is functioning, but there remains a problem with the second. Hopefully by the time this is read we shall have a warmer church building once again.

In the absence of Donald, who did so much behind the scenes towards the Quinquennial Repairs, Sheila Sutherland met with John Bailey and representatives of Pierra on 23rd October. Work was planned to commence on site on Monday 10th November and should take about eight weeks. A provisional completion date will be 16th January 2015. The work should not cause any disruption to the normal life of the church, but there will be a certain amount of scaffolding required to facilitate the work.

Churches Together in Leatherhead (CTiL) are planning a series of events in the Town Centre during the month of December. The main focus will be on a Tree of Hope for which people can donate presents to three local Leatherhead Charities. Do come along and support this cause, which is being run in tandem with the Swan Centre Management.

The engagement of a Family and Children's Worker continues to be an ongoing process and we pray that the right person will be found for this vital position.

Sue Roberts

Church Matters (27) for November 2014 - from the November 2014 Magazine

There is some good news about repairs to the church. In October's Church Matters column I reported that we might need to apply for a Faculty (a long process leading to permission from the Chancellor of the diocese to carry out work to a church) before the programme of Quinquennial repairs could begin. I'm now delighted to record that we shall not have to make such an application and can go ahead with the repairs. Also, the PCC at its meeting in the evening of September 24th accepted a paper about the proposed repairs and the recommended contractor and our architect, and I should, by the time you read this, have made some progress in getting the work started.

You'll no doubt remember that Pitstop had to stop the provision of a food bank service because of the flooding and that we consequently decided to support the food bank that operates out of the North Leatherhead Community Centre on Saturday mornings. All of the Harvest Festival gifts brought into church have been distributed in this way. Please continue to support the food bank with gifts brought into church. You'll find the food bank box in the north aisle, just inside the door. We continue our support for Pitstop in other ways.

I hope that you'll have heard the news about our new bishop. He is the Rt Revd Andrew Watson; he is 53, has been Bishop of Aston since 2008, and has previously worked in parishes in Notting Hill and Twickenham. He will be enthroned in Guildford Cathedral in February next year as our diocesan bishop, and until then Bishop Ian will continue to hold the reins. The Church Times reported that "before moving to Birmingham in 2008, Bishop Watson studied at Corpus Christi College and Ridley Hall, in Cambridge, was an assistant curate in Worcester and then Vicar of St Stephen's, East Twickenham, in London. He is married to Beverly, who is also ordained, and they have four children, aged 15 to 24. Besides being a keen amateur musician, Bishop Watson enjoys walking and is the author of three books." I wonder if we'll be able to get him to join one of our Saturday walks. They start at 7.30am from the church hall.

The Mothers' Union was brave enough to ask me to talk about a Churchwarden's Life at their October meeting. We had a lively time and covered some serious topics - the things that keep me awake at night as well as some light hearted ones. One of the questions I was asked to respond to was "do churchwardens work only on Sundays?" After the meeting I reflected on this and looked through my diary. Dear Questioner, I do work on other days, honestly I do, and it's just that you're more likely to see me on a Sunday.

The Leadership Team had a visit from David Warby of the Surrey Fire and Rescue Service on 3rd October. It was another activity to help us to improve our fire safety procedures. Following the arson incident in the lower vestry on 8th August the police and fire services have been really helpful in following up the crime and supporting us generally.

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (26) for October 2014 - from the October 2014 Magazine

Up against the copy date deadline because of holidays in Southern France there are nonetheless some church matters that affect us all.

Firstly, the favourite "church repairs"; all four of the contractors invited to tender for the Quinquennial repairs replied within the deadline. Our Inspecting Architect - John Bailey - of Thomas Ford and Partners has evaluated all bids and a recommendation will go to the PCC that we accept the proposal from Pierra Restoration. They are specialists in the work that needs doing, reliable, and are doing good work for Thomas Ford on some other church projects. We may divide the work across two stages or try to complete it in one. This remains to be established. Priorities are repairs to keep the rain out, then make the most significant masonry repairs, and then do the rest. As of today (the Saturday of Heritage Weekend), it is unclear whether or not we'll need to get a Faculty for this work. This is being urgently explored.

Not needing a Faculty means that we'll be able to begin in October/November and perhaps have the work completed by the year end. If we do have to put the work through the Faculty process it will be next year before we can start, with the physical implications of taking the church through the winter without the repairs having been done and perhaps facing construction industry price increases in 2015. It appears however that we may be able to reclaim all of the VAT expenditure which, at a rate of 20%, is an interesting number. We are also in contact with Surrey Churches Preservation Trust to see if it is possible to secure a grant towards these repairs.

The consultation process for our New Future Plans is now over and the drawings and text narratives have been collected in. All observations about the possibilities outlined are with the Rector and each one will be considered, with Thomas Ford and Partners being involved where necessary. Current thoughts are that we'll have three small teams, with one examining building issues, one considering finance and fund raising, and the third dealing with communications and publicity, all within an overall project structure led by the Rector. To get some of these activities started, three people will attend a national church workshop on the financing of capital projects, and Sue Roberts and I will attend a SPAB (Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings) workshop - partly funded by English Heritage - on church maintenance. I hope that it won't involve climbing up high ladders to inspect wood rot in rafters!

I went into church today (Saturday September 13th) to prepare for tomorrow's services; it's Holy Cross Day on Sunday and the altar frontals should have been changed from green to red but the decoration of the church to celebrate our heritage was so lovely that we stayed with the green. Congratulations to Sue Roberts for organising it all and to all of the display arrangers including Jill Goodchild, Beverly Mehta, Chris Stagg, Ann Albrow, Gillian Manners, Caroline Trollope, Valerie Jones, and Edith Wright, not forgetting the Heritage Stewards who looked after our visitors, and Peter Ford who took some of them up the tower.

Heritage this year looked back to 1914 and the Great War and remembered the lives and work of the people then who committed themselves to giving us the heritage that we currently enjoy.

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (25) for September 2014 - from the September 2014 Magazine

"Church repairs" is a phrase that occurs regularly in my church diary and I hope that some results will soon begin to be seen. The biggest project is making the repairs required to conform to the recommendations of the Quinquennial Inspection. This will be our most expensive repair project and work may well have to be scheduled according to when we want to pay for it. So far, John Bailey our Inspecting Architect has specified each repair, prepared papers for the Diocesan Advisory Committee and invited four companies to tender for the work. They are PAYE Stonework and Restoration, Universal Stone Ltd, Pierra Restoration Ltd, and Stonewest Ltd. You can find out more about them on the World Wide Web.

Next in line is the repair of the floor in the chancel. This is due to be carried out by Homefix on September 18th and 19th. The cost will be between £300 and £700 depending on what is discovered when the broken floor is lifted. The Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church (FLPC) have kindly agreed to fund this repair.

The burnt out light in the corridor leading to the lower vestry (well done Sheila Sutherland for spotting the smoke and turning off that part of the lighting system) will be replaced by Neil Mason - electrician for the Parish Hall. He'll also examine two of the lights in the south aisle that seem to "blow out" more frequently than we'd like.

And, by the time you read this, there'll be some new fencing in the far south eastern corner of the churchyard to replace some that went missing in a storm.

Do you wear tights suitable for 13 to 14 year olds? If you do you'll find that you've left a couple of pairs in the lost property basket. You'll also find a light brown scarf, some more tights, a tee shirt, hearing aid batteries (I don't want to hear any more complaints about not being able to hear the sermons!!!), a dinosaur drinking mug, handbag umbrella and assorted pairs of glasses. Take them now else they'll be gone.

In this church and parish we aim to grow disciples of Jesus Christ. This means that we grow in our understanding of our faith AND that we bring more people to the Christian faith. We can tell how well we're doing by reflecting ourselves, on our faith development - what are we doing to develop our lifelong learning - and by welcoming more people into our church. Whether we like it or not, we are an ageing congregation and without new, younger worshippers our parish church will close. Already we don't have enough people giving enough to fund the upkeep of our worship and our church. We rely on the dead church and the giving they made. That's why we need to re-order our building and make it more welcoming and able to be used by more people. Let's get some more families and children in here. You may have received a bookmark card with information about how we can welcome new families and children into our church. If you haven't received one then tell me and I'll get one to you. It is our own future that we're building.

Finally a word about the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War One. There was a moving Commemoration in the evening of August 3rd in the Parish Church with music, singing, readings and time for reflection and a concluding litany of hope. Almost a hundred people were present, including British Legion standard bearers, Sir Paul Beresford our MP and Emile Aboud the leader of Mole Valley District Council. There was an interesting display of medals, photographs, contemporary newspapers and magazines and examples of recruiting posters presented as cigarette cards by WD and HO Wills. How many of us have got "fag cards" stored away in our lofts? Swop you a Ted Ditchburn for a Tommy Lawton anyone?

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (24) for August 2014 - from the August 2014 Magazine

An important step was taken at Pentecost with a church meeting led by the Rector and John Bailey our architect. John talked about the ideas for reordering the church and redeveloping the parish hall. He began by reminding everyone that most of what we see in church dates from after 1860 including the floor, pews, wall finishes, and decorations emphasising that change is the only constant in the life of our church building.

He summarised the concept option presented to the meeting. It allows for the church to have toilet and kitchen facilities and the capability to host the parish office and a variety of smaller spaces for meetings. It sees the replacement of our late 19th century pews and the installation of a new stone floor with under floor heating. Concerned as I am with the repair of areas of badly damaged floor throughout the church, I can't wait.

In the east end of the church reordering changes will be minimal. The choir stalls - thought by the DAC to be "not particularly good" - will be altered and moved into the chancel and the Parker organ turned through 90 degrees so that it voices into the east end better. Throughout the church new heating and a new audio/visual sound system are proposed.
A small kitchen would be provided in the north aisle at the west end to provide facilities both for worship and secular use. The tower would have its missing floor and gallery - which was removed in the 19th century - re-instated. The current choir vestry will either become the Parish Office or continue to be a vestry with storage above. All three of these spaces can be used by the Children's Church and by smaller groups where necessary.

In order to provide the toilet and the one other missing space, either to be the Parish Office or a meeting room, a small extension to the south of the church will be created. This, known as the Pod, would be accessed through the existing south door which was blocked in the 19th century, so no removal of historic fabric is necessary. The pod will be a lightweight structure on a raft foundation avoiding the listed tombs. It will have toilet facilities on the ground floor and a further room on the first floor. This concept has already been discussed with the local planning people who were very supportive.

It is not proposed to sell the Parish Hall, but to change the design by turning it through 90 degrees to create a square hall with new kitchen and toilet facilities, thus freeing up space for the construction of three small houses to be rented or sold. The car park would remain more or less as it is.

The work done so far marks the beginning of the design process and comments are welcomed on the proposed way forward. Consultations with the DAC and the local authority have been very positive and discussions with amenity societies are under way - SPAB (the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings) visited us at the end of June. If you have comments, look at the concept drawings in church or in the Parish Hall. It is hoped also to display them in the library of the Letherhead Institute.

There's a new cook at the Community Market who is a pie expert. When asked about her baking she described the lovely apples she'd used and said that she poured water on to the flour to make the pastry in the ratio of 22 over 7. She said that it was a good approximation of pie! For more information see the footnote at the end of this church matters.

Do you think much about lavatories, and specifically lavatories in church? Thankfully it looks as though the ideas for reordering the church will give us some ease in this matter, but for the Victorians it was a controversial issue. The Ecclesiological Society and the journal "The Ecclesiologist" fought a long battle against the installation of lavatories, a somewhat ironic fight as much church building in those days was funded by the Waterloo fund (pun intended) raised by Parliament as thanksgiving for the post- Napoleonic peace. As the Victorian Society need to be consulted about our reordering, we'll find out where they are now!

Recent visitors who signed our visitors' book in church came from Queensland, the Netherlands, Kent, Dorset, Hawaii, Triel-sur- Seine, Miami, Cape Town, Indiana USA, South Africa, and Sydney Australia. Thanks to our Church Watch stewards we are able to read their comments.

Footnote National pi day is celebrated on July 22nd - it's 22/7 - and on March 14 because the first three digits of pi are three, one and four, much as the date is represented numerically as 3/14.

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (23) for July 2014 - from the July 2014 Magazine

The first full meeting of the new PCC was held at the end of June. New members were welcomed as were visitors Nick de Boer, Doug Waters and Andy Gill. The meeting began with a short and informal communion service with the pattern and chalice passed around the room and each person giving bread and passing the chalice to his or her neighbour.

The meeting also set a new standard for the way in which these meetings will be organised. Instead of a formal point by point agenda in the traditional way we used the vision and values hand [If you don't know what the vision and values hand is all about, visualise the following as fingers of a hand, starting with the thumb] to guide us through our topics and to keep us focussed on what we're trying to achieve, namely:

The PCC also voted a donation from the Leret Fund towards the new Social Enterprise project that LYP is beginning to launch. The work of the LYP is the biggest part of our community engagement activity - but not the only part. We deliver services on a regular basis to patients and staff at Leatherhead Hospital and to residents at the Beeches care home. Clergy and parishioners work with children at Trinity school, at Messy Church, with Pitstop and Leatherhead Start, and at Triumph AM. There's the Mothers Union and Fairtrade, the Men's breakfast, Sisters get Together, and the Parent and Toddler Group - and the list goes on. I find that people just don't know what we do across the parish and across the age ranges; we should "show and tell" much more energetically to demonstrate that the church is alive and kicking here in Leatherhead.

If I've not given your community engagement work a "shout out" this month, tell me about it or, better still, tell everyone who reads the magazine.

The Ascension Day Eucharist was much better attended this year and the chancel was full with members of the congregation overflowing into the choir stalls and generating enthusiastic worship and singing.

New chairs for the Hall? Newly installed chairman of the Hall Committee, Nick de Boer, pressed the PCC to consider replacing the Halls chairs with some that are comfortable, easy to move and to stack, and easy to clean. He was asked to investigate further and propose some possibilities. It is rumoured that a selection of bottoms will be invited to a testing session!

Have you heard about Ernest McConnell and Ivor Railton of St James Church, Whitehaven? Between them Ernest and Ivor have notched up more than 75 years' service as churchwardens but have both decided not to stand for re-election to their respective positions at the next APCMM!

As readers of this column will know, the churchwarden's role includes keeping proper order in the church. Ernest recalls one midnight Christmas service in which he was called on to eject an inebriated worshipper who had thrown up as he went forward to receive communion. "He wasn't violent and didn't do anything disrespectful but I escorted him out. He sent £50 for church funds with his apologies." I hope that he made the drunken churchgoer clean it up. (Thanks to the Whitehaven News for a lovely article from which these snippets have been taken).

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (22) for June 2014 - from the June 2014 Magazine

The numbers of people attending church this Easter time were more or less the same as a last year. The numbers are - last year in brackets - Maundy Thursday 38 (33), The Last Hour on Good Friday 46 (49), Striking the New Fire 27 (16), Holy Communion at eight o'clock 25 (26), Parish Communion 183 (181).

The Annual Parochial Church Meeting was held at 8 pm on Wednesday April 30th. The meeting elected Sue Roberts and Donald Yeates to be churchwardens, Sheila Sutherland and Bill Peetz to be assistant churchwardens. Vacancies on the PCC were filled by Anne Thompson, Brenda Peetz, Alison Draper, and Linda Hauxwell. Sheila Cole, Roger Lynch, and Donald Yeates were nominated as Deanery Synod representatives. All of the proposed sidesmen were elected unopposed. The Rector emphasised the importance of the sidesmen's role in making visitors and new church members feel at home. Navin Mehta - chief sidesman said that he'd like to hear from some "younger" parishioners willing to join one of the Sunday teams. The whole meeting thanked Martin Cole for all of his work as a churchwarden and assistant churchwarden and the Rector presented him with some thank you gifts.

Following this meeting, a brief PCC meeting elected Brenda Peetz as parish treasurer and Anne Thompson as PCC secretary. By the time you read this, the PCC will have had a social get-together at the Rectory on Saturday evening May 24th and its first meeting will have been held on Wednesday May 28th starting at 7.30 pm in the parish church hall.

The churchwardens have already had their first official duty outside the parish and attended the Archdeacons' Visitation of Churchwardens and Admission to office event at Holy Trinity Claygate on May 19th. It is a requirement that all churchwardens are admitted to office annually and declare that, having been appointed jointly by their incumbent and the people of their parish they will "serve the members of their church with love and care and represent them before the Bishop and on their Church Council". On a day to day basis, churchwardens are engaged in many light-hearted or serious, uncomfortable or pleasant, easy or difficult conversations and tasks but none comes near to the seriousness of the promise in the Commission and Blessing at the Visitation service.

An immediate follow up is to prepare for an Archdeacon's Parish Visitation. This is the Anglican Church's version of an Ofsted except that it is to check that the churchwardens and PCC are managing the parish church's affairs effectively. Having provided responses to the Articles of Enquiry - eleven pages of information covering finance, fire alarms, notice boards, church registers, bells and buildings, and everything in between we get the actual visitation. This time it will be made by the Rural Dean for the Leatherhead Deanery who will inspect the Church Property Register and log book of repairs, all of the church's silver and gold, our insurance policy, Quinquennial Report, and the Church Accounts. Our schedule is to get this response to the PCC for the meeting on May 28th. So if you see Sue or Donald scurrying around the church or churchyard with a sheaf of papers and a worried expression on their faces, you'll know the reason.

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (21) for May 2014 - from the May 2014 magazine

Do you think that the church looks cleaner? I hope that you do! On the first Saturday in April it was subjected to a vigorous "Spring Clean" organised by Sue Roberts. Twenty people, organised into teams and allocated parts of the church, brought down the cobwebs of last year, vacuumed carpets, washed and polished floors, climbed ladders and cleaned windows, polished pews, and buffed up - that's a technical term - the eagle lectern. Candle wax was lifted off the carpet with a hot iron and brown paper - please take care you candle lighters and snuffers - and monuments dusted. The workers also ate cake and biscuits, enjoyed a selection of music over the sound system, drank tea, coffee and squash and talked a lot.

A great deal of "tidying up" also took place so if you can't find the flower vase you're looking for, or a particular kneeler, that book you've been waiting to read, those extra copies of the music for the St Thomas Mass, the old cross that used to stand on the floor behind the altar, then put it down to the tidy angels who devoted their time to making our church a cleaner and more pleasant place in which to worship. Give thanks for the work of Sue, Martin, two Jans, two Peters, Matt, Graham, Sheila, Donald, Angela, Nicky, Juliet, Frances, Margaret, Roger, Bill, Valerie, Ruth and Rosemary.

Most people - especially those approaching their 150th birthday -know that the present pews were installed in 1873. Before then there were box pews. Thanks to some historical research by John Morris we also now know who "owned" most of these box pews towards the end of their life in 1871. Sue Roberts will be making more of this at Heritage Weekend but it's curious to wonder who the children were who came from the Mansion School and sat in pews 69 to 73, and the public house that had been owned by the retired publican Mr E Clark in pew number 77. Mrs Henderson and the vicarage installed their servants in pews three and four; no doubt to make sure that by being sat at the front, the incumbent could keep his eye on them. Was he perhaps the Robert Griffith who built the former Vicarage in Church Road?

The Leatherhead Deanery Synod began this year's season of meetings in February with a speaker from the London Institute of Contemporary Christianity. The theme for the year is community involvement and the Revd Doctor Johnny Douglas started off the programme with a lively and provocative evening. Later in the year the Dean of Guildford will talk about "how the Cathedral engages with its communities" followed in September by Archdeacon Paul leading an evening's examination of "the parish church and its relationships with its local community". There is no doubt much that we might be able to learn from this last session. Our representatives on the Synod are Sheila Cole, Roger Lynch and Donald Yeates.

Some more progress has been made in planning the work of the Quinquennial repairs. John Bailey our inspecting architect and his colleague Fergus McCormick spent time on 7 th April examining and photographing the detail of the work to be done. All of the repairs will now be specified, the specification sent to the Diocesan Advisory Committee, reviewed by the PCC, and then invitations to tender prepared. There were around 50 or so occurrences of damage inside and out which will need the attention of various trades including a steeplejack.

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (20) for April 2014 - from the April 2014 magazine

The next step in the process to complete all of the repairs identified by the Quinquennial inspection will be the appointment by the PCC of a Construction Design and Management Co-ordinator so that we conform to the appropriate legislation for the works to be done, and ensure that the work is carried out to the appropriate quality, and uses safe working practices. Our Inspecting Architect has recommended an appropriate contractor to do this work. We should also soon have a costed schedule of the work to be done. Unfortunately, as each week goes by our aged building shows its age and, since the Quinquennial inspection, we’ve had rain coming into the choir vestry and a part of the tiled chancel floor has begun to sink. We hope that tenors, baritones and basses will be able to hang on to their stalls and keep their heads – and voices – where we can see and hear them.

To help in the identification of possible candidates to be our new Bishop the Statement of Needs was on display on the churchwarden’s notice board for several weeks and parishioners could make observations about the kind of Bishop they think we need in writing, verbally to me as Deanery Lay Chair, or at advertised consultation meetings. This Statement of Needs has interesting information about our diocese. How many of these questions can you answer?

What are the six other dioceses that enclose the diocese of Guildford, and how many deaneries and parishes does it have? The diocese has a population of just over one million, but the density of population – the number of people per square mile – at 1,879 is four times the national average of 411.

The diocese has an annual budget of around £11 million and aims to break even each year. About 70% of this budget is spent on ministry provision and training. The budget is almost entirely funded by parish share receipts. All parishes pay equally for their direct ministry costs, and then “shared” costs are calculated on the basis of adult Sunday attendance and a “prosperity” factor based on council tax banding of houses. Although the diocese can be seen as an affluent one, financial giving is “only average”. I wonder what a similar calculation would show for our parish.

Finally on this topic, what kind of bishop are we seeking? Phrases used in the statement include “a Godly and courageous leader”, “a creative leader who will seek to inspire and enable rather than direct”, “able to connect with young people” and in favour of women’s ministry. In the diocese now about one third of all licensed clergy are women.

Are you on the Electoral Roll? Our current electoral roll has about 50 fewer people on it than the last one. Did you forget to register? Being on the roll means that you can vote at the Annual Parochial Church meeting, stand for election to the PCC, and be a sidesman. Enrol now by completing a form from Jane Andrews or Frank Haslam or from the table in church near the north door.

………………and our six neighbouring dioceses are London, Southwark, Chichester, Portsmouth, Winchester, and Oxford. There are twelve deaneries and 163 parishes.

Donald Yeates

Church Matters (19) for March 2014 - from the March 2014 magazine

A link with the past: As the result of a bequest made in June 1715 by Dr Hugh Shortridge, the Rector of Fetcham, the Rectors of Leatherhead, Great Bookham, and Fetcham are required to preach a sermon on the 30th January each year about the life and legacy of King Charles I. The conditions of the bequest don’t any longer pay for anything of course and the sermon may not always now be preached by the incumbent.

This year the Charles, King and Martyr sermon was delivered by John Swanson to a full chancel with a congregation for evensong of just over 30. It was excellent and John made it very relevant to present day church life here. If you missed it, it’s elsewhere in this issue of the magazine and on our website. Meantime, take a look at the west door curtain to find embroidery showing the execution!

Leatherhead Uniting Council of Churches represents Leatherhead’s Anglicans, Methodists, and the URC and meets four times a year to plan and organise joint and collaborative activities. The Council needs a volunteer to be the minute secretary. Could you do this valuable work? You’d prepare and distribute agendas, record and distribute the minutes, and generally help the chairman. The next meeting is scheduled for 8th May. If you’d like to do this interesting work please speak to Kuhan.

Thanks to the Churchyard Working Group we now have a clean churchyard free of fag packets, beer cans, and vodka bottles. However this generated a dozen or so bins bags that needed taking to the dump. This has now been done with the help of some volunteers. Assuming that the rain stops sometime soon there will be a “big burn up” of the garden waste that is collected.

The storms of January and February have added to the costs of church maintenance following rain reported to be dripping into the choir vestry. On examination, the damage seems to show that roof repairs will be necessary to the lead flashing. Meantime, big yellow buckets are strategically placed in the loft about the vestry. Also, outside, some more masonry now lies on the ground instead of being part of the walls!

Do you tweet? I was surprised to receive an invitation this week to join a Twitter campaign for the Anglican Church. As I’m a Twitter virgin I’m giving it a miss but more social network savvy readers might like to apply. A new twitter account, called @ourcofe, will be taken over by one person from inside the Church of England for a week, each week, over a year.

Everyone from Bishops, chaplains, youth leaders, cathedral staff, diocesan staff, congregations, volunteers, ordinands, Church of England school staff, to anyone else who has a role inside the Church of England, is asked to apply to tweet a week in their Church of England life. The tweeting will begin the first week of Lent and continue for 52 weeks. If you’re interested, contact Talitha Proud with brief information about yourself and what you intend to tweet about.
Donald Yeates: if you email her of course change the AT to @ before you send

Church Matters (18) for January 2014 - from the February 2014 magazine

Our most popular service at Christmas was the crib service. Once again it broke all records as it has done for the last four years. The Nine Lessons and Carols also had its best attendance in the last four years. Were we affected by the floods? Of course we were - in our hearts and through our prayers for those flooded out. The family service on Christmas morning had noticeably fewer worshippers as did the Midnight Mass. A review has been made of the Christmas services.

We had an "unusual" Christmas morning family service too. There was no organ as Gina was marooned and couldn't get to us. Stepping in wonderfully however were the Osborne family who provided music and song to lead us all through the service. Thank you! We also had a visit from a BBC reporting crew and TV camera. We may not have made the ten o'clock news but it was exciting at the time.

If you can't find that pair of warm gloves or your reading glasses don't be afraid to look in the "lost property" basket in church. You'd have found both of these items there last month.

Bishop Christopher writes to say "thank you to so many people" for filling the Cathedral at his Farewell Eucharist. He adds that "retiring and moving is a bitter sweet moment. But thank you for marking our rite of passage". He and Hilary have moved to Ruardean in the Forest of Dean where he is active in the three local parishes that make up the joint benefice.

Last month the Standing Committee and the Parochial Church Council met. Agenda topics included finance - this is inevitable and is discussed at all of these meetings. Our planned giving income continues to be worryingly less that our regular week by week expenditure. Both meetings also reviewed the work done to date by John Bailey our new Inspecting Architect. He has recommended a plan for tackling the many items in the Quinquennial inspection that need attention and a process for the development of a feasibility study to move us a little further along the road towards our New Future. There will be more news about these projects as they progress.

There is some movement towards to appointment of our new Bishop. A Statement of Needs has been produced by the Vacancy-in-See committee and it can be found on the diocesan website. It is ten pages long (!) but a copy will be posted on the Churchwardens' notice board by the beginning of the month.

There will be some formal consultations around the Diocese in the spring. In the meantime Bishop Ian asks that we pray the following prayer: "Heavenly Father look with mercy and favour upon your faithful people here in the diocese of Guildford. Bless and guide those responsible for the appointment of our new Bishop, someone of deep faith, soaked in the Scriptures and with a love for your people".

The first meeting on this year's Deanery Synod will be on 19 February in Effingham with a speaker from the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity who will talk and lead discussion about Community Engagement.
Donald Yeates

New Future Update - from the January 2014 magazine

Members of the Standing Committee have recently met with our new Inspecting Architect, John Bailey, to make further progress with our New Future.

In early 2012, the PCC commissioned some concept drawings for re-ordering the church. These were presented to the PCC in the Summer.

Before they were given a wider airing to the congregation as a whole, the drawings were reviewed during a site visit by the Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC), the body that advises the Chancellor whether or not to grant a Faculty (the Church of England’s planning permission process).

After their meeting, the DAC Secretary wrote to say that we needed to do some more thinking about our Statement of Needs and how it would be addressed by the concept drawings. Back to the drawing board!

The PCC held fire until a new Inspecting Architect had been appointed before returning to the task. John is now considering what we discussed and will come back to us – before too long, we hope.

Church Matters (17) for January 2014 - from the January 2014 magazine

The PCC met at the end of November and although I was laid low by a respiratory infection caught in Edinburgh I understand that some of the following things might have happened!

The agenda included a financial report, news of the Quinquennial Inspection and subsequent report, a discussion about chancel repair liability and our application to the Charity Commissioners.

The final version of our submission to the Charity Commissioners about Chancel Repair Liability (CRL) is now almost complete thanks to diligent work by Julie West.

The new Inspecting Architect, John Bailey – who is also the Cathedral’s architect – has begun to consider the implications of the Quinquennial Report. All of the immediate repairs noted in the report have already been completed and we now await the schedule of the more major work to be undertaken. There should be more news about this activity following a meeting due to have been held in December.

You should notice a difference to the north east corner of the churchyard following the removal of the damaged and diseased ash tree. All of the trees have now been surveyed and the subsequent report forms part of the Quinquennial Report. It is inevitable that more tree work will need to be done after consideration of the survey.

At long last the Diocesan Registry has issued a Faculty to us to make permanent the use of the All Saints church building by the Leatherhead Youth Project subject to a licence agreement between LYP and the PCC. It has taken almost a year for us to get to this conclusion – not through delays at the parish’s end I may say. Thanks to advice from Archdeacon Stuart Beake we have also been able to find a home with an organisation called Church Antiques for the no longer needed altar.

Put a date in your diary: Saturday January 25th. Following really good feedback from last year there’ll be a Burns Night celebration this year starting at 7pm on this date. The usual haggis, neeps and tatties will be served plus pudding. There might be a little something special to drink too! Tickets are available from Nicky Osborne.

Spare a thought – and a prayer too – for the Rector. He’ll be out of action for several weeks following a total knee replacement scheduled for January 15th at the Royal Orthopaedic Hospital in Stanmore.

Finally, overheard in Edinburgh outside the Anglican Cathedral after Choral Evensong, an elderly man was talking about his wife to a friend. The wife had apparently just had a very big birthday. “Aye” he said “she’s just an old whisky maker now but I love her still”.
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (16) for December 2013 - from the December 2013 magazine

I’m writing this on Remembrance Sunday – such is the deadline to hit the December magazine – so my head is full of the emotions raised by the service. We had a full church with latecomers having to stand, more than fifty people in uniforms and others wearing medals and an excellent Last Post and then Reveille from bugler Clifford Lennon. So, well done to everyone who contributed to making it such a memorable event.

Did you know that we have two Cathedral Chaplains in our church? Both Kuhan and Gail have this role. It involves occasional days spent at the Cathedral leading prayers every hour and being available to pray privately with individuals or small groups. There is so much that our ministry team does that we may be completely unaware of, and so many ways in which they carry forward the Christian message.

The Standing Committee met early in November and considered the current state of our finances, churchyard storm damage to trees and fences, chancel repair liability and two letters from our new inspecting architect about quinquennial inspection and New Future issues. Recommendations will go forward to the PCC for its meeting on the 27th November. The next Standing Committee has been provisionally scheduled for Friday morning, January 10th.

The PCC had an “awayday” on Saturday November 9th, but before any reader of this column gets too excited I should say that it was hard work and we didn’t go far away! Frances Presley offered her house as the venue and Linda Hauxwell and Gail Partridge organised the lunch. The day was led by Graham and focussed on each of us developing a greater understanding of ourselves – no, it wasn’t navel gazing, it was about our impact on other people and the way we work together. It was just the first step in the PCC moving towards a more effective way of working, which will benefit the whole parish.

Work has begun on planning for the busy Christmas period when so many services are scheduled.

Firstly in the planning there’s the Midnight service on Christmas Eve and two services on Christmas day. Then we know that the Christingle service will be on Sunday 8th December, with a planning meeting on 13th November and the packing of the Christingle bags on Friday December 6th.

The service of Lessons and Carols will be on the 22nd December, and the Crib service on 24th. West Hill School will have their carol service on Tuesday December 17th – with a rehearsal most likely to be held the day before. Oh, and there’s the preparation of hundreds of candles and the fixing of the candle holders for the two candlelit services.

The chairman of Mole Valley District Council has also asked for the civic Carolfest to be held in our church once again and is already enquiring about the church’s capacity. Roll on the time when we might have flexible seating! Don’t worry, the tree hasn’t been forgotten; it goes up as if by magic between the end of Advent and the start of Christmas.

Remember the notice outside an urban church in London? Don’t let stress get you down, let the church help!!
Donald Yeates

Church Matters (15) for November 2013 - from the November 2013 magazine

It is said that an Irish newspaper made record sales when its news vendors’ posters carried the headline “no news of the Pope”. However it turned out not to be bad news, just that the April 1st issue had no news of the Pope. On a smaller scale, there’s “no news of the Autumn Fayre” in Church Matters – read about it elsewhere!

There is, however, news of a departing Bishop, an arriving Archdeacon, a newly recruited Inspecting Architect, and a new strategy for Guildford Cathedral. Beginning with the cathedral strategy we hear that some of the land on Stag Hill will be sold for housing development including ”a new Cathedral Close to accommodate staff and clergy which will replace the existing sub standard housing” as well as social and private housing. It costs just under £1.2 million annually to operate the Cathedral and there’s currently a deficit of £100,000 a year so some bold moves need to be made to use the cathedral’s assets better.

The arriving Archdeacon is the Revd Paul Bryer, presently the vicar of St Paul’s Dorking, and Rural Dean. He’ll become our Archdeacon, probably in February, and he has a Leatherhead connection too as he was at one time Head of Religious Studies at Therfield. Meantime, we’ll continue to be looked after by the Archdeacon of Surrey, Stuart Beake, who came on a visit to spend an afternoon with clergy and churchwardens on October 9th.

The departing Bishop is of course Bishop Christopher who will finally say goodbye to the Diocese at his leaving service on November 30th, coincidentally on the sixteenth anniversary of his inauguration as our Bishop. There’s to be a series of prayer walks beforehand; some have already happened. Our rural Dean Robert Jenkins is in the middle of the arrangements for a walk in our Deanery but at the time of writing the date is not known.

Good news about a new Inspecting Architect. Following meetings with our shortlisted candidates we have appointed John Bailey of Thomas Ford and Partners. He has thirteen years experience of building conservation work, is the architect for Guildford (G11*) and Wakefield (G1) cathedrals and has the King of Prussia’s – yes honestly (!) – Gold Medal for church conservation and repairs of churches in Kent. You can see his work on the www. He’s already reviewing the implications of our Quinquennial inspection report and there are plans for him to come to the PCC to tell us what the remedial work plan will look like.

Our heritage days in September attracted 73 visitors fascinated by the historical displays and the opportunity to go up the tower. The Harvest Supper was a really good evening with 99 tickets sold, lots of food consumed, and good fellowship and entertainment enjoyed. The following Monday’s Alpha course also benefited from some surplus apple crumbles.

Activities in church have included a heart-warming Compassion Sunday service on October 6th when eight children from under developed countries were “adopted” by members of our congregation who will now support them in their school and daily life through the Compassion charity ( The All Age Service on October 6th was wonderful. Almost the entire congregation took the opportunity to plant a mustard seed and take away a mustard seed bookmark to a background of gentle music from the music group and quietly spoken prayers from the Rector. The silence when this part of the service ended was most moving. (If you’re not sure what all this is about read Luke 18 verses 5 to 10.)
Donald Yeates

Church Matters - 14, from the October 2013 magazine

Firstly, thank you to the parishioner who gave Church Matters the following “ten commandments for Churchwardens”.

1. Thou shalt not be perfect – nor even try.
2. Thou canst not be all things to all people.
3. Thou shalt have some time off each week. The Sabbath principle is a good one!
4. Thou shalt make time to worship as part of the congregation when not on duty.
5. Thou shalt learn to say “no”.
6. Thou shalt schedule time for thyself and thine own family and friends.
7. Thou shalt find some time to switch off and do nothing.
8. Thou shalt not be the doormat or the dustbin for the rest of the church.
9. Thou art not responsible for everything – so don’t feel so guilty.
10. Thou shalt not be thine own worst enemy – other people do this job.
I’m sure that they’ll all be taken to heart!

More thanks, this time to Frank Haslam for taking on the role of Parish Archivist. Helped by Brian Hennegan, work is going ahead to collect together the materials left by Linda; some will go to the local history society and some will come into the parish records. The first step is to check that we do actually have what Linda said we had, and Brian will be working in the parish office checking the records in the fire proof cabinet. Meanwhile Frank will be exploring the Surrey History Library in Woking to discover what they have.

Congratulations to the Rector on the award of his MPhil postgraduate degree. It’s been a hard slog since 2009 when he began the research but after writing 57,000 words and a subsequent grilling by assorted professors he has “successfully defended his theses” as the formal language states. Completing this research and putting the results to use as part of a spiritual direction practice was one of the three goals set Graham by Bishop Christopher when he became our Rector. It is expected that the work will make a valuable contribution to the psychological health of those clergy working in parishes where the demands of the job are overwhelming. For those of an academic inclination, an MPhil is a postgraduate qualification beyond the normal postgraduate masters, and can lead to a doctoral qualification.

Do you have a copy of the Leatherhead Advertiser for Thursday June 19th 1986 – price then only 18 pence? It was a souvenir edition to mark the 900th anniversary of our parish church since it was first mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086 when Leatherhead was a manor called Leret. The entry – now translated – was “The church of Leatherhead is attached to this manor with 40 acres of land. Value 20 shillings. Osbern de Eu holds it.” (Eu was a port in the present region of Seine Maritime.)

There’s a photograph of assorted clergy and parishioners including the Bishop of Guildford and the Dean of Rochester being led along the church path by our present verger, Sheila Ford. Had you visited the church during Heritage time you’d have seen all this for yourself thanks to a copy of the paper provided by Anne Thomson.

Our Quinquennial Survey report has now been delivered and considered by the PCC. Defects fall into one of eight categories including “urgent work requiring immediate attention” and “works to be carried out in the next 12 months”. The jobs in category one have now been completed and were relatively minor in character. Category two jobs are more significant involving repairs to stonework, roof, and floor. The stonework alone has 21 defects listed.

We are also facing the task of appointing a new Inspecting Architect to replace David Jewel who retired at the end of August. Work has begun on this appointment as a matter of some urgency as we can’t really prepare a schedule of work for the category two jobs until a new architect has been appointed.

Finally on a more light-hearted note, the use of “thee” and “thine” in the “ten commandments for churchwardens” brings to mind advice given by an old Yorkshire grandfather to his cheeky grandson. He said “don’t thou thee thou me, thee thou them as thee thous thissen.” It’s an interesting world.

Church Matters - 13, from the September 2013 magazine

Have you lost it? Do you wish that you could find it again? Take a look in the lost property basket just inside church. Are you missing a multicoloured spotted scarf; it would suit a budding Damien Hirst. What about a baseball cap, a pink purse – Barbie where are you – a multicoloured Mothercare cardigan for someone aged 3 to 4. There’s one lady’s blue glove waiting for a female Captain Hook, a small umbrella, two rubber walking stick feet, and a little brown hat. Items unclaimed by September 15th will disappear.

Attendance at the Parish Church in July was as follows (last year in brackets). At the 8 o’clock there was an average attendance of 19 (16) and at the 10.30 there was an average attendance of 82 (84).

The Leatherhead Uniting Churches Council met on July 10th and – amongst other things - discussed the future calendar for this year. Provisional plans are for each church to have its own Harvest Festival service – ours will be on Sunday September 22nd. There will be a joint Harvest Supper on Saturday September 21st in the Parish Hall. The All Souls Day service will be in the Parish Church on November 2nd at 6.30 in the evening and the Remembrance Service will be on November 10th at 09.45. The schedule for the Christmas services will be prepared once the new Methodist/URC minister has settled in.

In spite of its size, the graveyard is now full except for interments in existing double graves. It remains possible however to infuse ashes and add to the memorial wall. There are no plans at present to declare the graveyard closed. Church Matters understands that this would involve a legal procedure and relinquishing control over the churchyard to the local authority.

Beginning in October the All Age 10.30 service will move to a new date. From then onwards it will be on the first Sunday of the month – 6 October, 3 November, 1 December, and so on. The September All Age service remains on 22nd as presently scheduled.

There is still time to sign up to Ride and Stride. This annual walking, jogging, cycling, and horse riding event will be on September 14th, during Heritage Weekend. Explore the churches of the Diocese, see interesting places, meet new people, eat cake and biscuits from the churches you visit and raise money for our church and the Churches Preservation Trust. There’s more information available from Sheila Sutherland.

Heritage open days this year are 12 to 15 September. The church will be open from 10am to 4pm on Thursday to Saturday and from 2pm until 4pm on Sunday. Please contact S Roberts L276771 if you’d like to help in any way. These Heritage Open Days are part of a nationwide programme and we hope to explore the theme of “What’s in a name” through our Patronal Saints and the names on tombs, memorials, graves and artefacts. Come and be a steward, welcome visitors, and play your part.

The next Standing Committee is on August 23 and the next PCC is on September 18th.

Church Matters - 12, from the August 2013 magazine

The PCC met in the evening of Wednesday 22 July in the Reeves Room. The meeting opened with prayer. The minutes of the previous meeting were reviewed, in some cases amended, and a final copy signed by the Rector.

A report on the current financial situation was discussed. The outlook is not encouraging. The budget for the year shows that a deficit of £43,000 is the likely outcome and that breakeven of income and expenditure cannot be achieved without, once again, money being drawn from reserves. This continues the circumstances of the previous years with reserves always having to be used to support monthly activities. Contact is being made with the Diocese to determine the nature of the reserve funds and any restrictions on their use.

Additionally, no new reserves have been built up to support the likely cost of maintenance arising from the Quinquennial inspection held in April. The Quinquennial report is due shortly. It is clear to everyone that the floor and the sound system require attention and some attention needs to be given to the exterior stonework.

The PCC debated what should be done with the surplus brass, pewter and silver items – including the Gardiner Helmet - that had been delivered to the Cathedral treasury for evaluation and appraisal. These items, together with the NADFAS records, were examined by PCC members. The PCC decided that some items should be retained for use in services – such as two small cruets and some alms dishes and a pattern, and others should be offered on loan to the Cathedral for display or use, including the complete set of communion vessels from All Saints, a silver flagon, and items given to the church from the School for the Blind. All items taken on loan by the Cathedral can be “borrowed back” for special occasions. Some may be put on display during Heritage Weekend in September.

Rumours about selling the family silver are therefore quite unfounded!!

Neither is the Gardiner Helmet up for sale. It was inspected on Wednesday July 17th by the Keeper of Armour from the Royal Armouries in Leeds when he visited the church. It is as our church records show – a genuine late 16th century battle helmet with additions for funeral display. It is in need of some small repairs which it is hoped will be completed ready for Heritage Weekend. Its value to us lies in its local historical connection and it will therefore be reinstated to its previous position in church. It is not highly valuable in the financial sense and is covered by our existing insurance policy.

The concept ideas for reordering have been presented to the DAC and a DAC group visited the church on 3 July. The DAC subsequently wrote to the Rector encouraging us in our long term thinking and recommending that we should discuss the ideas further with the Acting Archdeacon of Dorking. The Rector will invite him to meet with the staff and churchwardens at his earliest opportunity.

PCC development was discussed and the book “Serving the Parish” was regarded as a good basis for future training. The first session is planned for 9 November.

Other items of note are that:

Church Matters - 11, from the July 2013 magazine

Some progress is being made in unravelling the mystery of the Gardiner Helmet. It is presently with Roger Heath-Bullock, the Curator of the Treasury at Guildford Cathedral, for valuation and for repair. It is a funerary helmet, not a battle helmet, and was used at Thomas Gardiner's funeral in 1571. He was Sergeant of the Royal Cellar to Queen Elizabeth - not a bad job - and lived at Thorncroft Manor.

The Royal Armouries in Leeds have been contacted because a couple of parishioners thought that they remembered the original helmet being of such value that the national collection was the safest place for it. The Keeper of Armour reports that their records show this not to be the case although they do know of the helmet. It is recorded as being in the church in their survey of 1984 as was the breastplate that accompanied it, although the breastplate was not recorded in a 1956 survey nor does anyone seem to know of its whereabouts now. Do you have a memory or evidence of it being here in 1984 - almost 30 years ago? Photographs of the helmet have been taken to send to the Keeper of Armour, to help him with further research. The FLPC also had a good photo of it on their Jubilate display.

At the PCC meeting on May 22nd it was agreed that architect Marc Friend's outline concept drawings could be sent to the Diocesan Advisory Committee for comment. This has been done and the DAC proposes to visit the church on July 3rd to explore the appropriateness of the concepts outlined. It is hoped that these concept drawings will then be displayed in church. It was originally hoped that they would have been one of the Jubilate displays but this turned out not to be possible.

By the time that you read this Sally Milner will have been licensed as our new Licensed Lay Minister and will join our ministry team.

More work is going ahead with our parish Values Statement. PCC members distributed copies at the 10.30 service on June 2nd. At the 8am service the values were read aloud by everyone in church. Thought is now being given to how church groups - Key Area Working Groups for example - and others could use the values in their activities. If you haven't got a copy of the Values leaflet they are available in church, and they appear the magazine and below.

Did you know that the Rector and the Curate both work with Leatherhead Trinity? Graham is a Foundation Governor at the School and Kuhan is a Community Governor at the Children's Centre. They make regular visits, run assemblies, give talks, meet families, and provide help and advice to teaching and support staff.

And while we're on the subject of schools why not go back to school yourself? The Diocesan Summer School starts on July 22 and features fifteen short half-day or evening sessions with some great teachers including Julian Henderson, Bishop Ian, Robert Cotton, and Colin Brown, a creative arts evangelist from Falmouth. Bearing in mind that we've just finished Jubilate you might like to try the evening session from Alison Adam and Heartmusic. It could be a real blast but be warned; you'll have to do some singing. Pick up a leaflet in church.

Leatherhead Parish Vision and Values, 2013 - from the July 2013 magazine

The Vision and Values Statement issuing from our Values Day in March was adopted at the most recent PCC meeting. It reads as follows:

Our Values

Growing as Disciples

As members of Leatherhead Parish Church we aim to grow as disciples of Jesus Christ by attracting more people into our church family, and by growing in faith together.
We area Jesus-centred church. Jesus is at the centre of what we do and how we live our lives. We try to discover his call to us; in moments of uncertainty we ask ourselves "what would Jesus do".


We recognise that different people encounter God in different ways; we offer different patterns of worship so that everyone may find their own pathway to Jesus. We embrace worship styles that range from quiet contemplation to making a loud and joyful noise. We meet together in church and in people's homes throughout the week. At special times we meet as a whole church to worship together as a Christian family.

Pastoral Care

We welcome the weak and the strong, the old and the young, the active and the less able, individuals and families, adults and children.
Everyone is valued. There are opportunities for all to use their time and talents and to contribute to the work of our Church.

Evangelistic Outreach and Community Engagement

We reach out into our local community, and with other churches share in worship and community activities. We aim to give at least ten per cent of our income to support the needy in our community, both local and worldwide.
We welcome the newcomer. We nurture and support our fellow worshippers. We pray for God's help in our work.

Trinity 2013

We were reminded that our parish has five Key Areas of Mission:
• Worship
• Growing as Disciples
• Evangelistic Outreach
• Community Engagement
• Pastoral Care

An A5 flyer setting out both of these was recently distributed in church and further copies are available from the Sidesmen's table. tba

I would ask that everybody would reflect prayerfully on our values and discern how best to live them out in daily life.
Graham Osborne

Church Matters - 10, from the June 2013 magazine

The Ascension Day Eucharist was held in the chancel this year and the High Altar was used. There were just over twenty people. Kuhan took the service, Graham preached, and the congregation sat in the red chairs which were arranged in collegiate style (facing inwards). We had choir and organ too. Church Matters thought that it was quite special and wonders if the 8am Sunday morning service could be held there sometimes too.

There is a little more news on the Gardiner Helmet. It is now with Roger Heath-Bullock, the Curator of the Treasury at Guildford Cathedral, but two or three parishioners have wondered if it is a facsimile helmet because they recollect that the original may have been sent off years ago to the Royal Armouries. This latest possibility is being investigated by the Keeper of Armour and Oriental Collections at the Royal Armouries. Watch this space for more news.

On a fine, bright spring morning parishioners and priests from Leatherhead’s Uniting Churches took to the Ark. No flood was expected; everyone was looking forward to the annual Away Day in the Surrey countryside in the grounds of St John the Baptist Church at Oakwood Hill. Led by David Bracewell the day addressed discipleship; what it means for the individual, for a congregation in church, for us in the community.

We had our Quinquennial (every five years) inspection of our church building and building records on April 23rd. Inspecting Architect and member of the Diocesan Advisory Committee David Jewel summarised his day by saying that “the church is basically in good condition and is being well cared for, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t a whole lot of small things that need attention – in addition to the floor!” He also mentioned our need to show that we had considered access to the church in the light of new legislation and are aware of the presence/absence of asbestos. This probably means carrying out audits: we can carry out the accessibility audit ourselves but will need an expert for the asbestos audit. We hope to get his draft report by the end of May. Since the PCC carries the ultimate responsibility for the state of the church, this report will be sent to PCC members for examination and discussion.

By the time this edition of Church Matters is read we should have had scaffolding in the nave from 28 to 31 May so that attention can be given to the sound system and, in particular, to the speakers. Also an estimate is being sought to replace/repair the damaged handrail leading down to the north door.

How would you or someone you know like to operate the sound box on Sunday morning at the 10.30 service? The churchwardens would like to find some volunteers to do this as part of a sidesmen team. It means checking the sound levels of the microphones before the service, making any necessary adjustments during the service, putting the batteries on charge, and putting the kit away safely afterwards. Please speak to a churchwarden, to Graham, or to Kuhan if you might be interested in providing this service.

The number of people on our electoral roll determines the number of elected lay representatives that there can be on the PCC. The first 50 people on the roll allow for six elected PCC members, up to 100 allows for nine, 101 to 200 allows for twelve, and 201 upwards for 15. Being on the roll is therefore important and it also qualifies people to vote at the APCM.

Finally, last time it was reported that “just over 70 people” attended the APCM. A stern note from the secretary of the meeting has been received saying that “this figure is incorrect. The attendance register, which is in my possession, records 54 people as being present – well short of your figure. I trust you will publish a correction”. Here it is: mea culpa.

Church Matters - 9, from the May 2013 magazine

Attendances over Easter were higher this year than last year due mainly to a really big increase on Palm Sunday. On Easter Sunday there were 243 worshippers across all of the services (235 last year); Good Friday was about the same - 49 this year and 50 last year; and Maundy Thursday 33 this year and 38 in 2012. On Palm Sunday - not counting the donkey there were 202 worshippers at all services compared with 142 last year.

A review has been made of each service by clergy and churchwardens so that we don't have the same glitches and to collect new ideas for next year. "Church matters" likes more donkeys and - at Striking the New Fire - more noise, fireworks, and bell ringing, AND please let's have the same breakfast. Thank you to Martin Cole for this year's welcome meal. Next,year, please don't let the clocks Spring Forward at Easter; the service team was in church at 5.30 body time to be ready for the fire striking!!

In the south wall of the Lady Chapel is a small safe with a curtain in front of it. The small safe is the aumbry. It houses the reserved sacrament used for home communions and for services in care homes. It is replenished each Sunday at the Parish Communion. The only time it is empty is from the last communion of Maundy Thursday until the first communion of Easter Day. There is very often an aumbry light associated with the aumbry and this light remains alight throughout the time that the aumbry contains the reserved sacrament. We shall shortly install one of these lights to be displayed near to the aumbry for this purpose.

Just over 70 people attended the Annual Parochial Church Meeting on Wednesday evening 17 April. Everyone was given a copy of the reports of church activities and a set of accounts. Martin Cole and Donald Yeates were elected to serve for a year as churchwardens; Sue Roberts and Sheila Sutherland were appointed as assistant churchwardens and made ex officio members of the PCC. Linda Hauxwell was thanked for her three years of hard work and for her contribution to the life and health of the church. Five people stood for election to the four places on the PCC and those elected were Jonny Follett, John Hampton, Margaret Jones, and Frances Presley.

Each year churchwardens are required under the Churchwardens' Measure to attend an annual Visitation of Churchwardens when they are admitted to office. These Visitations are organised on a Deanery basis and this year the churchwardens from the Dorking, Epsom and Leatherhead deaneries will be admitted at our church on 20 May at 8pm. If you would like to participate in this service please do attend.

You may notice that the Gardiner Helmet is not on display on the pillar at the south side of the chancel. On the advice of the Diocesan Advisory Committee it has been taken to the Cathedral museum to be valued. It dates back to the late 16th century when it was carried with Gardiner's funeral cortege. Gardiner was Serjeant of the Royal Cellar to Queen Elizabeth I and lived at Thorncroft Manor.

The south aisle pews all have new homes. Over £1250 was raised for the New Future Fund and most new owners used Jay and LYP for home delivery. A good result all round.

Church Matters - 8, from the April 2013 magazine

CONGRATULATIONS to our Archdeacon, the Venerable Julian Henderson, on his appointment as Bishop of Blackburn. He has been a strong and supportive friend to the Parish and the Deanery and he will be much missed.

Well done to the Big Burn Up team who had great fun with their bonfire on February 23rd. The worst part was clearing up the many discarded, empty vodka bottles and empty Fosters lager cans. See the picture on the churchwardens’ notice board for a view of Old Smokey.

The new notice board is here and in use. It’s been installed where the old one used to be, just by the Lychgate. There are three panels with secure lockable glass fronts and little chessmen magnets to hold the notices in place. It’s more attractive and will, it is hoped, encourage more people to read the notices; and at least they’ll be protected from the rain.

Have you heard the noise in the south aisle? Is it a bird, a squirrel, the Surrey puma, or something else? Whatever it is, it’s made a very visible front door for itself in the rendering below the dormer window. The latest estimate of the repair costs is over £800 because of the need to erect scaffolding and conform to Health and Safety legislation.

Lent Groups are now in full swing with well over 100 people participating, including people from St Michael’s Mickleham as well as from the Methodist, URC, and Engage churches. The final meeting will see all the groups join together for a closing session and a shared meal in the Methodist church on Wednesday March 27th.

Congratulations to the Revd Steve Cox who led us all in a lively, thoughtful, and results focussed values session after the 10.30 service on Sunday March 3rd. Hearts were opened and truths told about the values that we want our church to demonstrate. If this becomes the reality in the New Future then the future will not be like the past. We really will have a Jesus centred church that is inclusive, without cliques, that makes its presence felt in the community, is open to change, where people love one another, and which reaches out to the community. Some hard work was done by Anne Thomson after the event to bring together all those yellow post-it notes so that values statements can be crafted. Congratulations also to the hospitality team, who prepared, cooked, served, and washed up so that we were fed, and Engage could take over the Parish Hall in time for their scheduled worship.

And finally, whose grandchild was it who, when asked by her teacher what he was drawing replied “God”? When the teacher said that no one knew what God looked like the boy replied “they will now”. We all have our vision of God and strive to make a personal relationship with Him. Perhaps our values work will make that more possible. Angels will never seem the same again (if this sounds a strange comment to make, ask someone who was there).

Leatherhead Parish: Growing disciples of Jesus Christ: NEWS Easter 2013

[some items relating to members of the congregation have been removed for the internet, for the sake of privacy]

Thank you for being part of the Parish Church Lent reflections and Easter celebrations by joining in one of the services as a regular member or a visitor.This leaflet will keep you up-to-date with the latest happenings and help you keep in touch in 2013.

Putting a few myths to rest We have no plans to sell the Church Hall and should be able to make improvements to the Church within the existing footprint of the building, without having to expand into the Churchyard.

Attendance figures When we had a service at 9.30am and 11.15am numbers were up by 35%. Now that we have a 10.30am service and a 6.30pm service they are up just 1%.

Electoral Roll Don't forget that everyone needs to complete a new form this year - they are now available in Church so don't forget to fill yours in and return it.

Christian bookshop CLC Bookshop, 32 Fife Road, Kingston I was pleasantly surprised by the nice interior and wide variety of stock here - well worth a visit.

The Church Hall cooker has been replaced with a very shiny new model which was responsible for the lovely meal we enjoyed on Burns Night.

Burns Night: great company, great music, great food, great dancing and great narration. And lots of Scottish everything! A lovely time was had by one and all.

Minister changes Mickleham Parish is awaiting the arrival of its new Parish Priest, Revd Malcolm Raby and The Methodist and United
Reformed Churches will welcome Revd Linda Russell later this year.

Easter Day 10.30am Parish Communion.

The Magazine has a new Editor recent graduate Matthew Waters so don't forget to pick up a copy.

The All-age Communion Service is having a face-lift to try to involve more people and make it even more all-age friendly so do come along on the 4th Sunday of each month at 10.30am.

Family & children's worker Jane Smith will come to the end of her time in this role in August. Please pray for whatever direction this work will take in the future.

Surplus toys If you have any toys or baby equipment that you no longer require and would like to donate to the Church for the baby and toddler area, the Parent & Toddler Group or the Autumn Fayre please contact Janine (or the Office). Items must be modern, clean and in good condition.

The Autumn Fayre will need lavender so please cultivate yours over the summer.

Flower & Music Festival 'Jubilate' 10-16 June. Parish Church. Put it in your diary.

A good routine When you pick up your coat or bag to come to Church, why not also pick up an item of non-perishable food or toiletries that you can give to the Pitstop Foodbank? Collection box just inside the Church door - times are hard for lots of people so let's see if we can fill the box every week!

Not just for Lent ... Now that the days are longer and sunnier why not join a Home Group to further your friendships and fellowship? Ask Linda Hauxwell about which groups have spaces or any new groups starting.

United Pentecost 3rd Sunday of May This year's Pentecost service, shared with the Uniting Churches, will be in the Parish Church on Sunday 19th May.

The Parochial Church Council and Annual Parochial Church Meeting Next elections are on 17 April 2013 at 8pm in the Parish Church Hall but you must be on the Church Electoral Roll.

The Rector and the Curate are available at coffeetime on a Sunday at 11.45am in Church or by appointment.

Noticeboard We now have a new blue street notice board - why not take a look?

How to contact people? Try the Phone List at the back of the Parish Magazine or contact the Parish Office - L362544.

Christian Resources Exhibition Sandown Park 14-17 May 2013 Not just for clergy, this is for anyone interested in any aspect of Church life - lots to see and do and buy!

Brief who's who
Rector: Revd Graham Osborne L372313
Curate: Revd Dr Kuhan Satkunanayagam L372203
Youth: Jay Bristow 07971 294994
Children: Chris Stagg L374914

Values Day This was well led by Revd Steve Cox and a lot of discussion took place over lunch and into the afternoon. The PCC has asked Donald Yeates, Anne Thomson and the Rector to draft a Values Statement - that we wish to live by - for it to review and finalise. Watch out for it in the Magazine.

The Leatherhead Community Market and The Sewing Shop will take place on Maundy Thursday (not Good Friday): Come and pick up an Easter cake, some flowers, a card or bring a friend to share a chat over a cup of coffee. New producers welcome.

Parents ... Take time to make sure that your children know there's more to Easter than chocolate, bunnies and chicks.

Things children say Who was born at Christmas? ...Well, I get a bit confused between God and Jesus ?!

Contemporary service When this service was held in the morning, it contributed to a 35% increase in numbers. Moving the service to the evening has meant that young families can't attend so numbers have dropped. The PCC have approved plans for this service to cease for the time-being. However this will be reviewed once the Church building has been reordered when the set up and running of two main morning services will be facilitated by technology, kitchen and toilet facilities. In the meantime contemporary worship will be accessible at New Fire and within the All-age Communion service. Please pray for God's guidance.

Evening Service Pattern This is now under review with a possibility that Evensong may change weeks to avoid a clash with New Fire (the contemporary service at the Methodist Church with worship led by Jay Bristow).

Worship leaders, technicians and enablers wanted. Speak to the clergy to offer your services. Training available.

Harvest Thanksgiving will now be celebrated annually on the 4th Sunday of September. In 2013 this falls on 22 September.

Easter thought Someone said to Joseph of Arimathea, 'That was such a beautiful, costly tomb, why did you give it to someone else to be interred in?'.
'Oh,' said Joseph, 'he only needed it for the weekend!'

Compiled by Janine Stagg: Comments, suggestions or future items welcome.

Church Matters - 7, from the March 2013 magazine

The big burn up will be on February 23rd. During the morning of Saturday the 23rd the churchyard bonfire pile is scheduled for destruction by a group of pyromaniacs led by Gail Partridge. Warning letters are to be distributed to nearby houses and the first match will be struck at ten o’clock. Helpers who have volunteered so far to help Gail include only churchwardens and Jay Bristow. Is anyone else willing to help? The Rector has offered to provide bacon sandwiches, so tell a churchwarden if you’d like to join in.

Attendance at church in recent weeks was as follows: in January the 08.00 said Holy Communion averaged at 15; the 10.30 Parish Communion in January ranged from 53 to 89 with exactly a hundred at the Candlemas service on Sunday 3 February; numbers at the Six Thirty averaged 24.

The Quinquennial Inspection of our church will be made by our Inspecting Architect David Jewel on Monday March 4th. The PCC has commissioned this inspection – as they are bound to do every five years – under the Diocesan scheme for the inspection of churches. The architectthe PCC and they authorise payment. The PCC is also required to keep a log book containing previous Quinquennial ’s report goes to inspections and records of all work carried out on the church.

Did you go to the Burns Night Supper? It was a blast! Great food was consumed – even though it included haggis – and dancing. People were seen reeling about to Scottish music and not just under the influence of drinking the toast to the Haggis or consuming too much gravy flavoured with the special ingredient. The caller for the dancing was the Revd David Primrose complete with kilt, endless patience and enthusiasm, and not a little skill. Thanks to all of the cooks and waiters and especially to haggis bearer John Sutherland, speech maker Peter Leith, and poetry reader Lorraine Willmott. People already want tickets for next year!

Take a pew. The Chancellor for the Diocese of Guildford has now issued a Faculty for the removal of up to 13 of the south aisle pews and the installation of the chairs from All Saints. If you would like to have one of the pews, you may reserve one and are asked to make a donation for it. The size of the donation is up to you, but please be as generous as you can. Donations received will go into the New Future Fund and help to pay for new heating, flooring, etc. Each of the pews is numbered and dates back to the 1870s when they replaced older box pews.

The internet advertises many pews – old and new, pine and oak, and some with only one end! Our pews should be available for collection on Saturday March 16th between 10 am and noon. It is hoped that LYP will be able to provide a local delivery service for a small fee. Speak to a churchwarden at any time for more information or to say which pew you’d like and –assuming that no one else has asked for it – it will be reserved for you.

Finally grateful thanks to the estate of Raymond Clarke for a substantial legacy. It will be put towards our mission in Leatherhead and to the New Future Fund and will therefore be put to good use.

Also, well done to Matthew Waters who has taken on the job of magazine editor. This is his first edition, so wish him well for the future when you see him.

Church Matters - 6, from the Feb 2013 magazine

Well, did you get a seat?

Coming just a few minutes early to the Christingle service, the Crib service or the Nine Lessons and Carols may have resulted in finding what theatre goers call a "restricted view"; coming on time or a little late meant that you probably had to stand. This year almost 1,200 people came to our Christmas services, and although this includes counting frequent worshippers more than once, it is significantly more than came last year or the year before. This year the aggregate count was 1,188 compared with 965 last year and 955 the year before. This is an increase of 24% compared with last year.

Overall, our Christmas services were very well received here on earth with good music, singing and lighting, and a shared fellowship with people from other churches in Leatherhead and visitors from everywhere. MVDC were also reportedly pleased with their "Carolfest" held in the church and Councillor David Sharland has already asked to hold it here next year.

A review of each service has now been held and there are some lessons for 2013. Mainly, we need to be better prepared for bigger numbers. This means a more positive and better stage managed welcome to people arriving and a more efficient way to get people to their seats. Where do we find a buggy park? We really do welcome as best we can the buggy occupants, their siblings, mums and dads, grandparents etc and try to seat them together but buggy parking is a safety issue especially with the Crib and Christingle services.

Please send suggestions to "Church Matters" care of the Parish Office. Other general points included the possibility of advertising the events in the press and with a banner on the newly repaired railings, making sure that everyone can see the screen when it's in use and that the lettering size is bigger and that the sound can be heard everywhere.

Stand by for a big burn up. Take a walk through the churchyard and measure the size of the bonfire pile. Something must be done. Stand by then for the big burn up once the PCC sets a date, organises a volunteer team, and puts on a bonfire party. Some dry weather would help too. Watch out for a date in the weekly notice paper.

And finally the parishioner who had an accident on a NADFAS trip to a Kidderminster upholstery works is out of danger. Reports say that he is fully recovered.

Church Matters - 5, from the Jan 2013 magazine

The PCC has started the New Year with a new member. Jonny Follett was co-opted onto the PCC at the November meeting. If you attended the last Annual Parochial Church Meeting (APCM) you may remember that he was voted on to the PCC but was unable to take up his place because he hadn't been on the electoral roll for enough time. He's already taken up some duties and will be responsible for the new website when it's launched as well as for our use of Facebook and Twitter.

It looks as though there might be plenty happening as well!! It has at last been decided to prepare plans for the reordering of the Parish Church. The PCC has voted up to £10,000 to prepare plans for a reordered church building to reflect the needs of the New Future church that we all described two years ago. It will address the need for new flooring, heating, seating, sound and lighting systems, plumbing for lavatories, and facilities to serve refreshments. The visits that people made to other churches recommended by our Diocesan architect provided many new ideas and their experiences of going through a reordering process were illuminating to say the least!

The support of the Diocesan Advisory Committee has also been really valuable. All of the plans will be discussed by the PCC and will be available to churchgoers. The work to be done will need a significant investment and concluding how this can be funded will be an important part of their discussions.

We welcomed Linda Shepherd as a server this month. She's shadowing more experienced servers for a few weeks before serving by herself.

You may have read about raids and burglaries to churches. Much of our silver and old pewter ware has now been moved into the Diocesan Treasury for safety. In due course the PCC will make an assessment of our long term needs to see if this is the best solution. At our Archdeacon's visitation it was recommended that we should do this.

The Church Of England's Structures Of Governance - from the Jan 2013 magazine

I suspect a lot of people have little idea of how the upper echelons of the Church of England operate. The following is condensed from a paper by Mark Rudali, Director of Communications, Diocese of Guildford.

Benefices and Parishes: Parishes have PCCs, members elected at the Annual Parish Church Meeting (APCM)

Deaneries: Each with its own synod. Deanery Synod representatives elected on 3-year cycle at their parish APCM. (Leatherhead has 3 Deanery Synod representatives). They attend evening meetings, putting forward insights from their own local settings, and reporting back to their PCCs on issues of interest.

Dioceses: Each Diocese has its own Synod. Representatives attend meetings on Saturdays to discuss matters of importance to the Diocese as a whole and report back to their Deanery Synods.

Provinces of Canterbury and York: governed by General Synod presided over by the Archbishops.

What is a Synod? "Synod" is taken from a Greek word meaning "assembly" or "meeting", but also involves shared worship and sacrament. It can be seen to be modelled on the idea of walking and talking together (eg the road to Emmaus) and members share prayer and sacramental worship as they actively seek the mind of the Spirit. The role of Synod representative therefore allows flexibility for the leading of the Spirit when engaged in open-minded prayerful Synodical debate.

Governance in the Church of England can be defined as from "the bishop in Synod". At every level in the Church of England people serve in the House of Laity and House of Clergy as representatives not delegates.

What's the difference?

Members of PCCs and those on Deanery, Diocesan, and General Synods are elected because those who vote for them believe them to be aware of the probable views of their parish/deanery/diocese on particular issues. Conversely, candidates for election to General Synod are given opportunity to present their views at hustings prior to election. All lay Anglicans need to consider their engagement with this process.

The outcome of the recent General Synod vote on the consecration of Women Bishops emphasises the importance of engaging with the process at every level.

Anne Thomson

Church Matters - 4, from the December 2012 magazine

Bishop Ian visited our parish recently and called in at All Saints on a Thursday morning to catch up on the latest developments at LYP. Welcomed by our Rector Graham Osborne and Andy Gill, Community Projects Manager at LYP, Bishop Ian heard about the new work LYP is doing with year 11 pupils and sampled the excellent coffee from the Youth Cafe.

He said that he was "excited by the commitment and the capabilities of the team of youth workers and the infectious way they were drawing in young people to give them the support and encouragement that they need." He added that it was "quite clear that the work LYP is doing helps young people to grow their self confidence and to be more confident in finding their place in the world".

Bishop Ian also visited St Giles church in Ashtead to take their morning service and to hear about their plans for reaching out to the elderly and to the young, and for the development of a new church hall. In the afternoon he visited St Nicolas' church in Great Bookham to see the changes that have been made inside the church and to listen to their experiences with a family Sunday afternoon service. His day finished with a visit to the Cafe Church at St Martin's in East Horsley.

Reordering visits have been in diaries again and the second tour saw 18 PCC members and others visit St John's in Farncombe, St Andrew's in Farnham and St Peter's in Petersfield. There are shared characteristics across them all. Firstly, all of them opened up their churches to more light by doing away with the dark, heavy wooden doors and replacing them with glass doors, and replacing old lights with modern, attractive LED lights that give better lighting and cost less to run. Secondly, the churches were decluttered and kept tidy!

There were new floors - wood or reclaimed stone flags or new flagstones - and mostly there was under floor heating. Needless to say they all had lavatories and a kitchen. Heavy old pews had been replaced by chairs and - in one case - a mixture of light modern pews and chairs. What Could a reordering plan for us look like? Perhaps we'd begin with new doors and then attend to flooring, seating, heating, sound, lighting, and plumbing.

Everyone we met was enthusiastic about the effects of their reordering and how it had opened up their former museums to flexible worship patterns, concerts and choirs, playgroups and meetings, receptions and quiet corners for prayer. One churchwarden said to us that they didn't want to have a museum looking backwards to the past but a church looking forwards to serving its community.

All Saints features in other places in this issue of the church mag so Church Matters will confine itself to asking for your prayers for the new life in the building in its mission to the people of North Leatherhead.

Over fifty parents and children joined together in the Parish Church Hall on All Saints Sunday for a lovely United Morning Praise service led by Chris Stagg. From personal experience, Church Matters saw the enthusiasm and fellowship of this kind of worship.

Remembrance Sunday saw over 250 adults and young people crowd the Parish Church for a traditional service. Better planning meant that everyone had a seat this year and had enough energy left to process to the war memorial for wreath laying. We were really blessed with blue sky and sunshine for these poignant acts of worship.

Church Matters - 3, from the November 2012 magazine

Thank you if you asked where Church Matters was last month because you missed it - and Church Matters sheds bitter tears if you hadn’t noticed!

However, did you read the New Future article by a PCC member? How wedded are we to the past, or how ready are we to come up to date and face the reality that is today?

This hit Church Matters with a bang (almost!) on the Thursday before the Autumn Market when the gas engineer wanted to condemn both of our gas cookers. They are regarded as unacceptable in a commercial kitchen because they do not incorporate certain fail safe features. What did the New Future article say? “What about the Parish Hall – lovely big kitchen, shame about the fittings...”

Also, another shock has occurred: attempts to repair the wooden flooring in the south aisle identified “serious dry rot under the flooring”.

The rectification of these problems gives the Hall Committee, the Resources Group, and the PCC an immediate financial problem to resolve.

Carol Fest – the Mole Valley annual carol celebration will be held in the Parish Church on December 7th between 6.30pm and 8.30pm. More news nearer the time.

The Leatherhead Deanery held its September Synod in the parish hall at the end of September. In a lively meeting led by the Revd Robert Cotton, the Rector of Holy Trinity and St Mary Guildford, clergy and laity considered the appointment of a new Archbishop of Canterbury.

No bets were placed but his role was examined critically and people debated the topics that were thought to be most important and in need of addressing. Aspects of practical Christianity were considered and some thought that the sooner the issues of women bishops and gay clergy were resolved the better, and then the church could move on. Bringing the evening to a close, the Acting Rural Dean, Revd Paul Boughton, called on us all to recognise that the Christian way is to support our leaders, rather than follow the secular model of criticising them to the point where they’re not able to lead effectively. This applies, he said, at all levels, from our local parish up to the Archbishop.

The Deanery Synod also noted the resignation of the Revd Diana Thornton from Stoke D’Abernon, and Chris Bessant’s move to become Vicar of Chobham.

Numbers attending services at the Parish Church in September averaged out at 17 for the 8.00am, 83 for the 10.30am, and 25 for the 6.30pm. For Harvest Festival there were 20 at the 8.00am, 99 at the 10.30am and 21 at the 6.30pm.

A New Future for St Mary & St Nicholas Church - from the October 2012 magazine

At the last PCC meeting, we resolved to explore how we can realise our New Future. We asked one of the PCC members to write an article. Here it is.

Can I ask you some questions?

Do you have the same kettle that your Grandma had ?
Mine is certainly electric, my Grandma's was one of the ones that whistled on the top of the cooker.
Do you have the same lighting ?
Well, we both had electric but I wouldn't want her style of lampshade.
Do you have the same flooring ?
Yes, we both have carpet - but I'd quite like a new laminated wooden floor, if I could afford it.
Do you have the same kind of heating ?
No, I've got central heating. She had to make up the coal fire every morning, all that mess and even then it wasn't very warm.
How about listening to music ?
Well, she had a crackly radiogram. I manage with my clock radio but really should get my son to sort me out with an iPod or whatever the latest thing is.
Same type of chairs ?
She had a sofa and armchairs - they were fine at the time but not my choice of colour or fabric - I much prefer my sofabed - I chose it to go with the wallpaper and curtains, and it's so flexible.
And what about the toilet ?
Well, my Grandma had one in the back yard - not much fun! At least someone moved mine upstairs to the bathroom.

So, given the choice, are you attached to your old favourites or would you trade them in for a new model?

Here at the Parish Church, the PCC and the Working Groups are very keen to know what you think.

We would like to have a Church fit for purpose in the 21st century - a place that we could invite our friends (and their children) back to - just like home.

How does that look ?
• It might mean a safe coffee area
• It could mean better lighting
• It might mean a stone floor with underfloor heating
• It could mean a better sound system
• It might mean introducing comfortable chairs
• And hopefully a toilet (or two) - hooray!

And what about the Parish Church Hall?
• Lovely big kitchen, shame about the fittings, wouldn't we all love a dishwasher, especially after a Harvest Supper?
• Lovely big stage, shame it's been neglected so that no-one wants to hire it for performances
• Lovely - oh, no - not so lovely, toilets - have you been out recently and used those hand dryers that nearly take your hand off or those automatic flushes or taps ..

Now, wouldn't that be lovely ?

But, and it's a big but - these things don't come cheap.
How would we raise the money? Sell one of our houses ?
Sell the Parish Church Hall ? Have a whip round ?
What Would Jesus Do ? What would you do ?
Nothing is not an option.
Leatherhead PCC

Church Matters - 2, from the September 2012 magazine

HURRAH for the new fence – and just in time. And just as well too as we had in the region of 500 people passing by on the Olympics weekend, coming in to the Parish Hall to use “the facilities” – and overwhelming the toilets!! The generous ones left close to £400 to say “thank you” and “for this relief much thanks”. Top prize for cheek goes to the visitor who asked for cappuccinos and sandwiches! Thank goodness that Sainsbury’s was open so that extra tea bags and milk could be bought.

“Church Matters” is sad to report that Graham Davies, our organist and choirmaster, has handed in his resignation. It is hoped that he’ll be able to continue with “Music on Thursdays”. GD really knows his stuff and the Thursday lunchtimes are excellent. Eat a picnic lunch whilst you listen.

The first minibus trip, to see how other parishes have reordered their churches to move towards their new futures, visited the parishes of St Mary’s Shalford, St Mary’s Pepper Harrow, and St Paul’s Dorking. Ten people had a good day out and came back with some exciting and interesting new ideas.

Church attendances in the last couple of months averaged out at 15 for the 08.00, 88 for the 10.30, and 27 for the six thirty.

A decision has now been reached to release the final part of the All Saints space to the Leatherhead Youth Project and a final 9.00 communion service will be held there on All Saints Sunday on November 4th. In the meantime, services will continue as normal on September 2nd and October 7th. Special attention is to be given to the preservation and display of various artefacts of significance in the life of All Saints. Appropriate Faculties will be prepared by churchwardens to enable this change to take place and for All Saints to meet its New Future as a vibrant centre for Christian youth work. The Rector has written to everyone who regularly worships there to tell them of the change.

FYI - from the August 2012 issue

DON’T TRUST THE FENCE – but not for too much longer we hope. At the Summer Celebration on July 8th - for more on this see elsewhere in this edition of the mag – Peter Leith our Health and Safety manager had a face to face discussion with Surrey County Councillor Tim Hall about the state of the fence that is supposed to stop us all from falling down from the churchyard path into the road. In a subsequent email, Tim wrote to say that he was not at all happy to find that this work had not been done. He said that he has asked that, as a priority, the railings should be made safe before the Olympic cycle race.

Following the Christian Aid abseil down the tower, we have been asked by the Rainbow Trust if we’d do it again, but with them this time. Reflecting back on the effort that we and Christian Aid had to put in last time we’ve said that it’s just too much for us to handle at the moment.

The Standing Committee met on Friday June 29th. The treasurer’s report was presented by David Barnish in Brenda Peetz’s absence and the meeting reviewed work on the “New Future” projects and the Key Areas of Mission.

All work on updating the Parish Log Book and the Terrier is now complete. The Rural Dean – using delegated powers from Archdeacon the Venerable Julian Henderson – met Linda Hauxwell, Donald Yeates and Martin Cole in the Server’s Vestry to sign the official record. It is the Churchwardens’ responsibility to maintain these records and to present them for inspection on the demand of the appropriate authorities.

Kuhan was ordained priest in Guildford on Saturday June 30th. About 30 parishioners attended the cathedral and over 70 joined in the lunch given for him in the Parish Hall. On leaving the cathedral Bishop Christopher asked Kuhan – as his first priestly act – to give him his priest’s blessing, which he did, surrounded by a crowd of onlookers.

The Lych Gate notice board is to be replaced if funds can be allocated to this work. It remains an unofficial black mark against the church’s appearance in the Archdeacon’s Visitation Report. Possible new boards are being investigated.

Parish Funding Update - from the August 2012 issue

I have already advised we have a need to increase our level of giving to fund the boring matter of annual running costs. Examining last year’s Annual Accounts we can see that in 2011 planned giving by members, tax benefit, and collections provided 43% of our running costs. The average income from similar sources for all parishes in the diocese is 75%. We need to improve!!

The response to the presentations, held last November in our church, has increased our regular giving by £13/14,000 in a full year.

In addition we have reintroduced regular collections at services and in particular at baptisms, weddings, and funerals.

We are now writing to all members on our Electoral Roll who have not yet responded to our appeal, inviting them to join in regular giving according to their means.

These are difficult times for everyone and it would appear we are in for a long period of financial instability in Europe. Nevertheless we have to continue the work of the church while covering our costs. I am sure everyone will respond to that fact.
Martin Cole, Parish Funding Promoter

News from the PCC - from the July 2012 magazine

At the Annual Parochial Church Meeting parishioners appointed the following people to the following jobs:
• Linda Hauxwell and Donald Yeates to be Churchwardens
• Martin Cole and Sheila Sutherland to be Assistant Churchwardens

This left a vacancy for another Assistant Churchwarden and the Rector said that there was always the opportunity for someone to discuss with him offering themselves for this post and that they could be appointed for a year on a co-opted basis. Following the meeting, someone has done this and there will be more news soon!

A new financial team has taken over. Our new Treasurer is Brenda Peetz (assisted by her husband Bill), the Planned Giving Recorder is Alan Fleming, and David Barnish is our Financial Consultant.

Questions were asked about the Parish Share and the valuation of church properties. Following professional advice, it is not proposed to revalue church properties at present. The issue of the Parish Share will be debated at the Deanery Synod to be held on June 13th when Stephen Marriott the Diocesan Secretary will present on “financial issues facing parishes in the present economic circumstances”. Three parishes will also present mini case studies on this topic, including Martin Cole presenting on our Parish Funding Programme.

Seven parishioners were elected to the PCC. They were John Hampton, Brenda Peetz, William Peetz, Janine Stagg, Jane Summerfield, Martin West, and Lorraine Willmott.

At the PCC on May 16th topics discussed included the Vision Process and “New Future” projects, and the reports from the seven key areas of mission. Ideas for the new website were reviewed. The photographer has been busy snapping and the PCC gave thought to a new a new logo for the church suitable for the website and the magazine. Some identification of the church, through the logo, with Leatherhead was one aspect considered.

New Worship Pattern - from the May 2012 magazine

We have been following an experimental Worship Pattern since October 2010. Analysis of how it worked, including a Worship Pattern Review questionnaire, commenced in December 2011. This paper now summarises the findings of that analysis and sets out the new Worship Pattern approved by the PCC on 14th April 2012.

Some facts about the experiment and the survey

The experimental worship pattern, offering both formal and informal worship styles on a weekly basis, resulted in an increase of some 30% in our average total Sunday attendance.

There were 117 responses to the Worship Pattern survey. Most respondents were over 65 years old but there were replies from all age groups. People described what they liked best about their main service and why they didn’t like other services as much.

The survey asked about the changes that people would like to see. Some main themes emerged. People thought that having two main different services on Sunday mornings was divisive and that it would be better to have
• A family/all age service at least once a month at 10.30am
• A single morning service at 10am or 10.30am
• Alternate weeks traditional and contemporary worship styles
• A joint service at major festivals
There were subsidiary themes about coffee time, the use of the screen and the timing of Sunday Club.

Analysis and Review

Over one hundred hours of time has been spent analysing and discussing and praying about the survey results, and possible worship patterns. This has involved our ministry team, churchwardens, the Worship Key Area Working Group and the PCC. You won’t be surprised to know that there is no single worship pattern that meets everyone’s individual preferences!

There is however one worship pattern that meets the main preferences and our aspirations for our New Future.

This worship pattern is to have a New Parish Communion service every Sunday at 10.30. Sunday Club will start in the Church Hall and will usually come into Church for Communion. Once a month this service will be an All Age Parish Communion with active participation by children and their leaders. The aim is for these services to be inclusive, loving, joyful, high quality, relaxed but reverent. These services will be based on Common Worship Order One.

There will be informal worship every Sunday at 6.30pm. This will be at the Methodist Church on a fourth Sunday, with Book of Common Prayer Evensong (Said, Sung or Choral) at the Parish Church, and a Uniting Churches Taizé service on a fifth Sunday. More detailed discussions about united evening worship are continuing but our informal worship will include Bible study, prayer and occasional Lay Leadership.

The BCP Said Holy Communion will continue at 8am every Sunday probably with the addition of a homily more often than at present.

At All Saints there will be Holy Communion at 9am on the first Sunday of every month. Triumph AM will continue at 10am on the second and fourth Sundays. KNOW will be held in the evening of the second Sunday.

There will be coffee in church after each New Parish Communion. This will provide a relaxed time to meet and catch up with each other. There will be a similar fellowship time after the evening services.

What happens next?

The present plan is to introduce this new worship pattern on Sunday 6 May. Much remains to be done with detailed service design still to be completed. There will be a presentation on progress towards the New Future at the Annual Parish Church Meeting (APCM) on Wednesday 25 April.

The new pattern can be seen here

Parish Vision Project - from the April 2012 magazine

People have worshipped at St Mary’s for over a thousand years. In that time they built many new futures for their church congregations and buildings to enable them to survive and to grow. Building on their history and tradition they adapted their work and worship to meet the challenges of their changing world.

We are now at the beginning of another series of changes as we try to ready our church for the challenges of its New Future.

Over the last two years we’ve all worked to create a vision for the kind of church that we’d like to see here in Leatherhead. We described this kind of church in our New Future document and prepared a pathway showing how we would work towards it.
Much progress has been made already. We have:

• Agreed our vision and mission statement
• Set up seven Key Area Working Groups, each with a convenor, to move us forward towards our vision.
• Introduced and trialled new service patterns, and just completed a survey to get feedback about the preferred pattern of services and the features of our worship that are most valued by those who attend our Church.
• Completed a successful Parish Funding Programme that resulted in planned giving promises increasing by 25% for 2012 compared with 2011.
• Established Home Groups as a regular feature of our church life.
• Worked with other churches in Leatherhead to develop our faith together. This year over 100 people are following a shared Lent course run in small groups in houses and churches.
• Filled our church on Remembrance Sunday, at the Christmas Carol Service and the children’s Christingle Service.
But there is still more to do. Our very popular and much used church hall needs upgrading – toilets, kitchen, boiler, windows and stage. The church itself needs to be completely reordered with better lighting, heating, seating, sound system, flooring, toilets and some kitchen facilities.Several options are being considered to achieve this.

Having completed a very successful Parish Funding Programme, the Parochial Church Council (PCC) has decided to embark on the more detailed process of developing our New Future document into a Statement of Need, working out what facilities would meet those needs, how and where we might provide them, estimates of how much that might cost and how we might fund the necessary developments.

Nothing is fixed; we’re at the exploration stage. If you have concerns please speak to a member of the clergy or one of the churchwardens.
The Clergy, Churchwardens and Assistant Churchwardens

Achieving the Vision - February 2012

People have worshipped at St Mary’s for over a thousand years. In that time they built many new futures for their church congregations and buildings to enable them to survive and to grow. Building on their history and tradition they adapted their work and worship to meet the challenges of their changing world. We are now at the beginning of another series of changes as we try to ready our church for the challenges of its New Future. Over the last two years we’ve all worked to create a vision for the kind of church that we’d like to see here in Leatherhead. We described this kind of church in our New Future document and prepared a pathway showing how we would work towards it.
Much progress has been made already. read the rest of this statement.

Parish Funding Programme - from the February 2012 magazine

The Parish Funding Presentations took place on three consecutive days last November.  With the use of latest technology (thanks to Graham's expertise in this field) I was able to give an illustrated account of the present state of our finances.  Having relied a lot over many years on income derived from past benefactors gifts, the reality now is, that income has dropped and we, the living church, must give more.

I said that the current giving by us (the congregation) provided only 30% of our annual running costs.  The average for every parish in the Diocese is 75%...... what a shocking difference.....

I am pleased to say that in response to the presentations Planned Giving income will increase by 21% or £10500 plus tax benefit in 2012.  That is a good initial response for which we say 'Thankyou' and I remain hopeful that sum will increase more, helping us to maintain all of our extensive mission we currently provide. The result increases our giving to 42% of annual running costs.  Still a long way to go.  It would be good if everyone on our electoral roll gave regularly by bankers order, which would help us enormously towards achieving  the Diocesan average of 75%.  If anyone did not receive an invitation to the presentations or wishes to set up a bankers order, please contact me.

I would like to thank very much Linda Hauxwell and Donald Yeates who so ably assisted in the presentations and the great team of volunteers who served such delicious food to those attending.

Martin Cole
Parish Funding Promoter

Review of Experimental Worship Pattern - from the January 2012 magazine

"Since the last magazine, the Worship Key Area Working Group, the churchwardens and staff have revisited the proposed Worship Pattern Survey. As a result some significant changes have been proposed to the survey process to protect the confidentiality and anonymity of the responses and to focus more closely on the objectives of getting views about service patterns. It is with deep regret that Frank feels unable to go forward on this new basis and has withdrawn from the survey project.

The survey will however continue to the timetable outlined previously. Look out for the survey forms in Church on Sunday January 1st and Sunday January 8th. Forms will also be available from the Parish Office.
The Rector"

Parish Funding Programme - from the January 2012 magazine

I write this article early December after the Parish Funding Presentations have taken place. With the use of the latest in technology (thanks to Graham's expertise in this field) I was able to give an illustrated account of the present state of our finances. Having relied a lot over many years on income derived from past benefactors, the reality now is that income has dropped and we, the living church, must give more.

Our giving currently provided for only 30% of our annual running costs. The average for every other parish in the Diocese75% .... what a shocking difference.

We have pruned our expenditure and budgets to a degree where we make no provision for future maintenance and all repairs are carried out on an 'at need' basis. Not good and, as a result repairs and renewals are continually deferred.

I am pleased to say that, in response to the presentations, our Planned Giving income will increase over the 2010 figure by 19.67% (£9982) plus tax benefit in 2012. That is a good initial response for which we say 'Thankyou' and I remain hopeful that sum will increase more, helping us to maintain all our extensive mission we currently provide. The result increases our giving to 42% of our annual running costs. Still a long way to go. It would be good if everyone on our electoral roll gave regularly by bankers order which would help us a long way towards achieving the Diocese average of 75%. If anyone did not receive an invitation to the presentations or wishes to commence a bankers order please contact me

I would like to thank Linda Hauxwell and Donald Yeates who so ably helped in the presentations and to the great team of volunteers who served such delicious food
Martin Cole, Parish Stewardship Promoter, 373330

Review of Experimental Worship Pattern - from Dec 2011's magazine

Detailed planning of the survey of those attending our services at the parish church is well under way. The purpose is to learn more about what people think about service times and the kinds of service. We would like as many people as possible to take part. 

The survey is being handled for us by Frank Haslam, who is an Associate Member of the Market Research Society and one of the very experienced and highly trained people who check market research agencies to assess their compliance with international standards.

There will be absolute confidentiality for those taking part.  Only Frank will know who has completed any given form, and no one will be identifiable in the results.  This will be achieved by giving each questionnaire a unique number that is made known to Frank – this is a vital step in the process because it may be necessary to clarify an answer, or check that the handwriting has been read correctly. If Frank does not know who has submitted a particular form, the answers on that form will not be included in the responses to be analysed. More information soon on the parish website and in church and in the notices.
Worship Key Area Working Group

[and from the News Sheet for 27 November 2011:

We are now ready to begin the review of our experimental worship pattern. The timetable for the survey questionnaire is as follows:
9 Dec - final version and all operational details agreed;
Sun 1 Jan onwards - questionnaires available;
Sun 12 Feb - official closing date;
Wed 29 Feb - completion of data inputting, coding of open ended comments (including back-checking of replies as required), dummy runs on early data to check analysis;
8 March - final results released to PCC.]

Review of Experimental Worship Pattern - from the Nov 2011 magazine

We are shortly going to be doing a survey of those attending our services at the parish church to learn more about what they think about service times and kinds of service. We would like as many people as possible to take part.

The survey is being handled for us by Frank Haslam, who is an Associate Member of the Market Research Society and one of the very experienced and highly trained people who check market research agencies to assess their compliance to international standards.

He insists, quite rightly, on absolute confidentiality for those taking part. Only he will see the replies and no one will be identifiable in the results.

To help to get as high a response to the survey as possible, it is essential that Frank knows who has got a questionnaire. Each will have a unique number and when you take one, it is vital to let Frank know the number on the questionnaire. This is a condition of taking part. More information soon on the parish website and in church and in the notices.
Worship Key Area Working Group

Growing as Disciples Key Area Working Group (KAWG) – Progress update - from the Nov 2011 magazine

As a group we based our objectives on some of the Marks of Christian Discipleship namely

1. Becoming lifelong learners , e.g. through Bible Study and other teaching

One of our aims was to have Bibles available in church so that congregation members could look up the readings for themselves rather than reading from the notice sheet. This helps with the lifelong learning process of becoming more familiar with the Bible. A small group was formed to compare the various versions of the Bible and to come to a decision. After several study meetings and using different versions for personal reading and study, we made a decision to purchase the New International Version 2011 (which is being funded by a donation). Hopefully, we shall have Bibles in church by Bible Sunday 23rd October. These will be kept on the book shelves by the north door and will be available for anyone who would like to use them.

Another aim was for the continuing growth of small groups and this is happening with group members sharing their journey of faith, learning together and enjoying friendship and fellowship. Please contact Linda Hauxwell if you would like to join a small group. Alongside small groups there have been two seminar series one on Biblical Prophets and one on Other Faiths which have given people another learning opportunity.

2. Exercising faithful stewardship (using our time, talents and treasure for the building up of God's Kingdom)

We wanted to make serving the Lord more simple and to encourage church members to use their gifts to do this. So we developed a poster (with the help of Jay) entitled ‘Growing Disciples – groups to join and teams to serve on…..’ This lists groups and teams and asks us where we fit? It is
displayed in the north aisle where there is room to study it and to contemplate.

Other marks of Christian Discipleship are:-

3. Developing a fervent prayer life
4. Being committed members of our Church Family, through faithful and mutual fellowship
5. Being passionate worshippers
6. Evangelism: spreading the good news of the Gospel to others people , in Leatherhead and at work

KAWG members Linda Hauxwell, Carol Bristow, Andrew Chastney, Chris Stagg

Key Area of Mission - Pastoral Care - from the October 2011 magazine

After a lot of prayerful consideration, the Pastoral Care Key Area has been re-structured to look like this

PARISH FUNDING from the September 2011 magazine

"Each should give what they have decided in their heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver"

2 Corinthians 9:7 Over the coming weeks we will be concentrating on our Parish Funding Programme or, putting it another way, balancing our Income and Expenditure account. For a decade and more we have increasingly relied on our investment income and reserves to cover our costs. In recent years, as members have moved away or died, income received from freewill giving has fallen and this we have to address. God is generous to us. Let us all be generous in furthering His work in our Parish by searching our hearts and providing the funds necessary to cover our costs with courage and commitment.

As the Parish Stewardship Promoter, assisted by fellow Wardens Linda Hauxwell, John Hampton, Sheila Sutherland and Donald Yeates, we will be keeping you regularly updated with our progress and invite you to feel free to talk with me or any Warden on this important matter.
Martin Cole Parish Stewardship Promoter

Re-plastering - from the July 2011 magazine

As many of you have noticed, we have embarked on a major outstanding item of work following the Quinquennial Survey carried out in November 2008.

There were signs of rising damp problems around the South Aisle and Lady Chapel walls, plus other areas. Over twenty years ago there were damp problems when the original plaster was replaced to a height of around two feet. It was replaced with waterproof sand and cement mortar and painted with waterproof paint. Unfortunately, this led to damp rising to almost four feet, as the plaster was unable to "breathe". Using modern plasters, cement renders and non-breathable paints can lead to damp problems as they seal the walls, not allowing them to breathe properly.

We have obtained the services of Archers Stone Masons, a well known building surveyors and contracting company, who specialise in the restoration of ancient monuments and historic buildings. The work involved removing damp and blistered plaster work up to a height of five to six feet and then re-plastering with slaked lime plaster and mortar with horse hair! This has been used for thousands of years, whereas the use of cement in construction is relatively recent.

The work was started in late April. With the majority of the plastering completed and once most of the water used in the preparation of the mortar has evaporated, the contractors will complete the decorating work with "breathable" paint. This project also
involved removing radiators and electrical sockets and the dust-cover of the Parker organ.

The cost is in the region of ten thousand pounds and we are extremely grateful to the Friends of the Parish Church who have agreed to pay almost half of it. Navin Mehta

We need a Mission

from the Rector, Revd Graham Osborne

On Sunday 9 May some 70 members of our parish congregations gathered after coffee for the Parish Vision Process Meeting. Everybody had brought a packed lunch and settled down at tables in the Church Hall. The aims of the meeting were as follows:

To understand why a Vision is needed
To understand our Vision Process
To review where we are now
To hear from the Diocese and the wider church
To discern our Key Areas of Mission
To draft our Mission Statements

We started out by looking at why we needed a Vision for the parish. "Where there is no vision, the people perish" (Proverbs 29.18): contrast these two pictures ....

Once there is an overall direction then all the activities we undertake can be aligned to take us towards that destination, and decisions can be made as to what takes us in that direction and what does not.

The meeting then turned to the A3 Chart [that for was on display in Church] showing Where Are We Now? that has been refined since the start of Lent by contributions from all those who have reviewed and commented on it.

We also looked at the Statement of Needs that formed part of the Parish Profile used in the appointment process for the new Rector.

The Revd John Gooding, Director of the Mission, Evangelism and Parish Development Department of Guildford Diocese, then gave us perspectives from both the Diocese and the wider church.

The meeting concluded that we cannot stay where we are and that we need to develop and grow as a thriving church.

Having reached this consensus we moved on to Where Are We Called? and set about distilling the Key Areas of the mission to which God is calling us at this time, in this place. Every individual then had the opportunity to decide which were their own Key Areas.

After discussing and debating these – first in pairs, then in fours, then in eights – the meeting was presented with the results.



















The meeting as a whole then reolved those down into seven Key Areas of Mission. A group then formed around each Key Area and wrote a Mission Statement.

The resulting Vision and Mission Statements were as follows:


To that end, in the words of our members, our Key Areas of Mission are:


Growing as Disciples

Evangelistic Outreach

Engagement with Community

Pastoral Care - All Ages


Ecumenical Links

The next stage is to form a Working Group for each Key Area, each with a PCC member as Convenor. Each Key Area Working Group will then begin to address the third stage of the Vision Process - How Do We Get There? - developing Goals and Action Plans in its Key Area, plans that will aim to turn our Vision into reality.

There will also be a Planning Support Group to assist where needed. We will be developing our plans with our covenant partners in the Methodist and United Reformed churches and, wherever possible, we will be working closely with all the churches in the town.

If you would like to be involved in this exciting adventure, please get in touch with me, with one of the staff or the Churchwardens, or a member of the PCC.

Happy June!

[editor: The Vision Statement above is also available as a pdf]

2010 Annual Parochial Church Meeting from the June 2010 magazine

The APCM was held on Wednesday 21 April 2010. As always the meet- ing was preceded by a Meeting of Parishioners held to elect the Churchwardens for the coming year. As Peter Leith had decided not to seek re-election, Navin Mehta and Linda Hauxwell were elected Churchwardens.

After approving the minutes, the meeting turned to the accounts for the last year. Presenting these the Treasurer, Alan Fleming, pointed out that, while the Parish was in a relatively privileged position financially, expenditure in 2009 had exceeded income, with a drop in receipts from planned giving. He had drawn up the draft budget for 2010 in expectation of a further deficit.

He was grateful to the Friends of Leatherhead Parish Church for their generous support, and also to the Hall Committee, Parish Magazine sales, Concerts in Church, and others for their contributions. It was pointed out that income from rental of the two church houses would be reduced in the event of one of these being required for a stipendiary curate, but this was unlikely to happen before Petertide 2011. The adoption of the accounts was approved.

Frank Haslam, the Electoral Roll Officer, reported that the number on the Roll was currently 220. The Rector, Graham Osborne, while thanking Frank for his work on the Roll, explained that in response to a request from the Diocese, Frank had carried out an analysis of households on the Roll by Council Tax banding for the purpose of calculating a Relative Prosperity Factor for the parish. The information disclosed had been purely statistical and did not include any names or addresses.

The meeting then received reports on the Fabric, Furnishings and Ornaments of the Parish Church and All Saints Church, the proceedings of Leatherhead Deanery Synod; the proceedings of the Parochial Church Council.

Martin Cole, John Hampton and Sheila Sutherland were then elected as Assistant Churchwardens. As six nominations had been received for four vacancies on the PCC for three years, a ballot was necessary. After the ballot papers had been counted, Jay Bristow, Jane Haslam, Frances Presley and Donald Yeates were declared elected. The meeting then approved the re-appointment of sidesmen.

After the formal meeting, the Rector gave a presentation in which he referred back to the Statement of Needs drawn up before his appointment, described how he had responded to them in his application, and how he planned the ongoing Vision Process. This would be taken forward in a Parish Meeting on 9 May when a small number of strands would be identified to be taken forward by smaller groups. The over-all Vision Statement would be "Leatherhead Parish - growing disciples of Jesus Christ".
Anne Thomson, PCC Secretary

PCC Report from the April 2010 magazine

The Annual Parochial Church Meeting on 21 April 2010 offers people on the Electoral Roll the opportunity to elect Churchwardens, Assistant Churchwardens and four PCC Members. The Magazine editors suggested that it might be useful to "lift the veil" on what happens at PCC meetings.

Every meeting receives routine reports from the Churchwardens on the fabric, fixtures and fittings of the two churches and the two tenanted church houses, and a financial update from the Treasurer. This last year we had been concerned about the activities of a tenant (now moved out) at the Woodbridge Avenue house who had carried out unauthorised work himself which had been botched and had caused damage to fittings and decor. We have also been concerned about the performance of the letting agent there. The PCC was concerned to learn that income from planned giving had reduced significantly in the second half of the year, and this will have to be addressed in the near future.

Some topics have generated quite heated discussion. Among these was a proposal for refurbishment of the Reeves Room, which would have involved masking the boards on which Sunday Club children's artwork is displayed. Some members felt strongly that the children's work should not be hidden. A representative of the Hall Committee was invited to a subsequent meeting to explain the proposals and to report back to the Committee the views of the PCC. It was felt that if the intention was to provide somewhere for hirers to project presentations there were better ways of doing it.

Another issue, which proved controversial, was the proposal for the re-equipping of a child-friendly area in the Tower. While generally sympathetic to the wish to make young families feel welcome, there were some concerns about responsibility for clearing up and tidying away after use and that toys purchased should be non-bangable. After further details had been provided the PCC approved the proposal. The Archdeacon of Dorking was consulted and was able to give approval under his discretion to approve without faculty schemes where total expenditure did not exceed £2500.

The PCC was delighted to welcome the Revd Graham Osborne as Rector in November. Since his arrival, meetings have been calmer and shorter –the first PCC meeting he chaired lasted 45 minutes! Anne Thomson, PCC Secretary

Parish Hall improvements from the November 2009 magazine

When I was young I was told that painting the Forth Bridge was a never-ending job. After the bridge opened in 1890, the story went, a team of men set out from one end to paint the structure. When they reached the other end, several years later, they immediately crossed back and started again. And so ad infinitum and possibly ad nauseam - but at least it was a job for life.

The Parish Hall is smaller and newer than the Forth Bridge, but the maintenance problems for a heavily used building are similarly unremitting and never-ending. The work is organised by the Parish Hall Committee on behalf of the PCC, and our aim is to provide a safe, attractive environment for many different activities.
Many of these are directly related to the church, in which case no charge is made for using the facilities, but the main hall, the Reeves Room, and the small committee room are also available for hire and the income from this provides the money needed to run, maintain, and where possible improve the Parish Hall, and also helps to support the church finances.

Some tasks, including gas and electrical servicing and safety checks, and the refurbishment of the hall floor, have to be carried out annually. Redecoration, inside and out, is a rolling programme planned on a five-year cycle. We also take on larger improvement projects when there is sufficient money. In recent years the toilets have been refurbished, and Oa toilet for the disable and baby changing facilities, have been provided.

The latest project, completed during the summer at a cost of some £7,000, has been the complete refurbishment of the Reeves Room, involving the provision of new carpets, curtains and blinds, as well as repainting. The room can now be blacked out to facilitate slide or film shows, and we have tried to provide a comfortable, neutral room, which is suitable for many different purposes. It looks attractive at present but we depend on users, whether they have paid to use it or not, to keep it looking so for as long as possible.

What of the future? Routine maintenance obviously has to continue, and when the unexpected happens it must be dealt with. Roofs may leak-, windows get broken; and new legislation demands compliance. The committee has no plans for any more large projects at present, partly because it is aware that some church members would like to make major changes to the existing structure and layout. Until a decision is taken we will continue to maintain and where possible improve the excellent facility we currently have. Kevin Taylor, Chairman, Parish Hall Committee

Planned Giving - from the June 2009 magazine

The Parochial Church Council is always appreciative of the financial assistance that members of the congregation regularly give for the work of the Parish. Indeed without such assistance it would be difficult to see how the Parish could operate.
There are differing ways in which it is possible to give:

The number of congregation members using the weekly envelope scheme has rapidly reduced, moving over to the more efficient and administratively easier Bank Standing Order system. Part of the reason is the change in church attendance whereby many members do not attend every week. Thus many of the envelopes are, in effect, wasted. Using standing orders reduces the amount of cash to be counted and transported to the bank each week.

A Standing Order is controlled entirely by the church member and may be amended by a simple instruction to your bank, or increasingly by members using an online banking system.

If you do presently contribute by weekly envelope or regular Gift Aid envelopes, please consider if it would be possible to change to a Standing Order. For those regularly giving using the Gift Aid envelopes, it would save having to supply personal details every time a gift is made. If you require assistance or advice on any of the above please do not hesitate to contact the Planned Giving Secretary, Bernard Salsbury (01372 375468). All financial help is appreciated, whatever the method of giving. Thus if your present method is right for you, then please continue. Bernard Salsbury