A ROUND-UP this time, of reports and photographs from recent events, projects and plans, including some new pages to take note of…
• Windows of Opportunity takes a look at plans and proposals for St John’s Church, Bridgetown, and includes an introductory video by Reverend Steve Jones. Find the new page under Projects.
• Caring Town Information Exchange is based in the Mansion on Fore Street in Totnes, and is a signposting service for local people around health, care and wellbeing needs. Their new page is under Community.
• And in case you missed the announcement first time around, Friends of St Mary’s now have a menu all of their own, with details of the recently-launched Membership Scheme.
[Scroll down for tasters of all of the above.]
St Mary’s Fabric Committee have been busy, too, making recommendations. See their checklist, below, for ideas to ‘reduce clutter’ within the church.
Forward dates for the Tuesday Afternoon and Evening House Groups, and likewise for the Crosspark Book Club, are further down this post, under Community News.
Three special services are coming up, in Dartington, Totnes and Cornworthy.
Entertainments-wise, you’ll have to decide between two evening events on Saturday 15th July – one at St John’s, the other at St Mary’s. Or if you feel like some coffee and conversation, there are now three choices each week – History at St John’s continues on Saturdays; there’s a newly-launched Community Café on Wednesdays (also at St John’s) – and there are the ongoing Tuesday Specials at St Mary’s, which are proving especially popular with those who’ve been enjoying sitting outside in the recent sunshine. Plus Mary Harris is having a Garden Party on Sunday 30th July, with a Bring & Buy stall, cream teas and other goodies – in aid of St John’s windows and refurbishment fund.
PS If you haven’t yet gotten hold of the July Parish Newsletter, there’s a contents list below and a link to download the extended, colour version. Note that voluntary annual subscriptions for the Parish Newsletter are now due – please contact Julian Hall for a donations envelope, or see him at St Mary‘s on Sundays.
SPECIAL SERVICES in Dartington, Totnes & Cornworthy
Sunday 9th July at 6pm
Ways with Words
We are delighted to welcome John Bell from the Iona Community to be the speaker at this special service. John Bell is well-known hymn writer, author, speaker and resource worker and he will be joined by poet, priest, photographer and artist, Ian Adams, for this celebratory service taking place in the Ways with Words Literary Festival. Music will be provided by our own Ashprington Community Choir, directed by Liz Chandler together with Divertimento and Diocesan Consultant for Liturgy and Music, Andrew Maries. The service will be led by Reverend Jane Frost, Totnes Team Curate.
• tickets are free and available on the door – so do get there early!
• download a printable A4 poster
Sunday 16th July at 6.30pm
St Mary’s Church, Totnes
Responses: Smith (with ‘Stone’ Lord’s Prayer)
Hymn 577: Stand up and bless the Lord
Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis: Aston in F
Anthem: Give unto the Lord – Elgar
Anthem after the prayers: Lord I trust thee – Handel
Hymn 558: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of creation
• musical director Jan Dietz
• officiant The Rector
• read about St Mary’s Choir
Sunday 30th July at 10.30am
St Peter‘s Church, Cornworthy
• no other services on that day – except at 8am in Totnes
Saturdays ongoing from 3pm to 5pm
St John’s Church, Bridgetown
HISTORY AT ST JOHN’S
A series of events, when older residents of Bridgetown will come and share their memories of Bridgetown generally and the church in particular, while enjoying tea and cake. Newer and younger residents may like to come along to hear about life in Bridgetown in the past.
• everyone is welcome
• no tickets are needed, but there will be a bowl for donations
Tuesdays 11th, 18th & 25th July from 10.30am to 1pm’ish
St Mary’s Church, Totnes
Toasted teacake, coffee, warm welcome – every Tuesday until September. Tables and chairs outside in the sunshine (inside seating also available). In support of the Friends of St Mary’s
• more information from Sandra Nicholson on 01626 330049
Wednesdays 12th, 19th & 26th July from 10am to 1pm
St John’s Church, Bridgetown
A place of friendship and fellowship to the community.
The café will run on a pay what you feel basis.
Saturday 15th July from 3.30pm to 5.30pm
Anstey House, Jubilee Road, Totnes TQ9 5BH
MESSY CHURCH BARBEQUE
Coming from the top of Jubilee Road, Anstey House is on your left with big wooden gates. There will be balloons outside.
Please park your car on Jubilee Road. If it is raining, the barbeque will be held at St John’s Church – if the weather looks doubtful, the decision about the venue will be made by midday, so please ring Diana Lusher (number below) if you need confirmation.
• RSVP by email / phone 01803 840702 (we need to know the numbers for catering)
• more about Messy Church here
Saturday 15th July from 10am to 11.30am
St John’s Church, Bridgetown
EXPLORING OUR FAITH
Final session: Exploring Forgiveness
Everyone is welcome – you don’t need to have been to any other sessions to attend this one.
• for more details, talk to any of the clergy team
Saturday 15th July at 7.30pm
St John’s Church, Bridgetown
Marldon Community Choir presents
SOUNDS OF SUMMER 2017
A delightful mix of songs which will provide the perfect soundtrack to your summer.
• tickets £8 (includes a glass of wine / soft drink, call Anne on 07703 066877
• all profits to Rowcroft Hospice
updated: Saturday 15th July at 7.30pm
St Mary’s Church, Totnes
Brent Singers‘ Purcell concert
DIDO & AENEAS
conductor: Philip Arkwright
Denise Kenoe, Heloise West & Tim Mirfin
• free entry (retiring collection)
• details from 01752 892703
• download a printable poster
NEW: Saturday 29th July at 11am
St Mary’s Church, Totnes
for Lymphoma Association
Ludivico Einaudi, played by Lina Okihara, supported by Totnes School of Piano.
• entry £5 – all money raised will be donated to the Lymphoma Association
• coffee from 10.30am
NEW: Sunday 30th July from 2.30pm to 5pm
4 Swallowfields, Riverside, Totnes
Mary Harris is having a
Come and enjoy her garden, meet friends and chat. You can have cream tea or tea and cakes for £5 or try the Bring & Buy stall.
• in aid of St John’s windows and refurbishment fund
PHOTOGRAPHS – click the images to enlarge them
Deanery Confirmation 18th June 2017
with the Bishop of Plymouth, the Rt Reverend Nicholas McKinnel
Those Confirmed on this day were Amanda, Scarlet and Greg from St Mary’s, Totnes and Claire and Charlotte from South Brent.
On Track EducationStudents from On Track Education selling ‘healthy breakfasts’ outside St Mary’s Church in late May, in aid of Unicef‘s ‘Day for Change 2017’, which aims to help malnourished children grow healthy and strong. Every £1 raised is matched by The Power of Nutrition, a charitable foundation. The students made and sold their own ‘energy orbs’, smoothies and breakfast muffins, and were extremely grateful to St Mary’s for allowing them to use the space outside the church.
Party In The Town – St Mary’s Church, Totnes, April 2017
WINDOWS of OPPORTUNITY – for St John’s Church, Bridgetown
Reverend Steve Jones (video) introduces the St John’s Bridgetown Reordering Project
The Story of St. John’s
St. John’s has an interesting story to tell. Originally part of the parish of Berry Pomeroy, it was built in 1832 for the rapidly growing suburb of Bridgetown by the Duke of Somerset. Its first minister was the radical preacher, Revd. James Shore. Under his leadership, St. John’s left the Church of England for a about thirty years to become the first congregation of the breakaway Free Church of England. St. John’s is now part of the parish of Totnes with Bridgetown in the Totnes Team.
Since then Bridgetown has continued to grow. A lot of new homes were built in the post-war period, and major development continues today. St. John’s has provided pastoral care for many generations and has a long track record of community engagement and provision.Today it has become an important centre of the community and its environs, providing much more than just worship facilities. However, the social need continues to escalate and investment is needed to sustain further growth. Bridgetown has a significant loneliness and deprivation problem, and we are looking to expand our community provision – in particular at the present time in response to the national Campaign to End Loneliness. St. John’s is the only place of worship and the only major community centre on its side of the river.
The church building is now in need of a major facelift to make it ﬁt for its present-day and future purpose. After a serious ﬁre in 1976 the vision of the then vicar, the Revd. Roy Harris, was for St. John’s to become a conference and community centre, as well as a worship centre. The church was reconstructed as a multi-purpose building, but unfortunately much of the work has not stood the test of time.
We are now developing our Seven-year Strategy for the whole building which embodies our vision for progressive development of the interior, and an enhanced frontage and setting of the Grade II listed building and the Totnes conservation area. We are deeply committed to supporting the use of the building in many rich and diverse ways, and the well-being of those who enjoy the welcome and hospitality we naturally want to give each day…
• read the rest of this article on our new page (under the Projects menu)
ST MARY’S FABRIC COMMITTEE – suggestions & recommendations
Following meetings of the Fabric Committee and the PCC, a tour of the church was undertaken to see how the building could be less cluttered. This has resulted in a number of suggestions / recommendations to be put to both committees for approval.
1) To build in a large cupboard projecting from the back central wall (in the missing banner area). This would need a faculty to take out two pews from that area but would be large enough to house crockery for social events, flower arrangers‘ equipment and boxes of glasses.
2) To remove the information leaflets from the porch seating – the Tourist Information function is to be taken over by the Guildhall.
3) To relocate the prayer etc. notices on the altar rail in St George’s Chapel to two smaller plastic display stands.
3) To purchase modern folding chairs for the choir – number as required – and relocate them to the space beside what is no the flower cupboard in the choir vestry. The old chairs to be returned to the church hall.
4) To cover the new platform unit with a suitable material cover (perhaps matching the piano cover).
5) To have only one display area (by the South Door, as now) for the Friends of St Mary’s literature.
6) To have one member of the congregation to have oversight of church tidiness and to be approached if items are misplaced.
• none of the above is set in stone so if you have comments / suggestions, please see Peter Rogers or email him
CARING TOWN INFORMATION EXCHANGE – now open and happy to help
Caring Town Information Exchange
So I am a Caring Town Connector! What does that mean? I am part of the new Caring Town Information Exchange based in the Mansion on Fore Street in Totnes, a signposting service for local people around health, care and wellbeing needs.
Why are we needed? (That seems to be a common question.)
Who comes to see you? (Another question – but don’t worry – it is all confidential – no names or addresses or indeed anything personal about you is recorded.)
A huge variety of people come in (it’s not boring – I could chat to people all day). Those without a roof over their head who are looking for somewhere to sleep or take a shower, people who are struggling to pay their bills, those looking for help in caring for elderly parents, or people who find they have some spare time, want to volunteer in some way and are wondering how to go about it. Or perhaps they have moved to the area and are simply looking for social activities where they will meet new people…
• read the rest of this article by Victoria Patch on our new page (under the Community menu)
FRIENDS OF ST MARY’S – membership scheme
DO YOU SOMETIMES WISH you could bottle a little of St Mary’s and take it home with you?
Well, you can – by joining the Friends of St Mary’s! The Membership subscription scheme was launched in early 2017.
Membership benefits include:
• Access to a stunning, growing collection of online images showing our historic church in all its splendour – not to mention close-up photos of many architectural highlights that you may have missed.
• Members receive email listings of all forthcoming concerts and events, with reserved seating (on prior application) for all ticketed Friends of St Mary’s events.
• Last but not least, you are helping to support a variety of very worthy projects to enhance and maintain St Mary’s Church.
We’ve added several new pages, under the menu heading Friends of St Mary’s:
About Friends of St Mary’s
Friends of St Mary’s shop
Friends of St Mary’s membership
Friends of St Mary’s – join
Friends of St Mary’s Members’ Galleries
COMMUNITY NEWS with Liz Waterson
For many years, Kris and Bill Mindang have lovingly tended the rose bushes and flower beds in front of St Mary’s in Totnes High Street. They are now elderly and Bill is in poor health, so they are no longer able to continue. Volunteers are urgently needed to help maintain this beautiful little garden, right in the heart of Totnes. It is the first thing that thousands of visitors see when approaching the ancient church.
Even one hour per month, at whatever time is convenient, would be a great help.
• contact Julian Hall 01803 867537
Tuesday Afternoon House Group
Our final meeting before the Summer break is on July 18th – we will meet at 4, Riverside, Swallowfields (Mary Harris’ house, phone: 01803 865772). We will be studying Chapter 6 Being Healthy from the book Living Faithfully by John Pritchard. Please bring your books!
• further details, Liz Waterson on 01803 849345
Tuesday Evening House Group
The Tuesday Evening House Group is meeting to discuss the book Living Faithfully by John Pritchard.
18th July – Being Healthy (this is the last house group before summer).
• all sessions are at 3 Sparrow Road except 6th June, which will be at 25 Kings Orchard
• contact: Carolyn Stilwell on 01803 863030
Crosspark Book Club – 2017 forward date for your diary
Monday 7th August Island Wife: Living on the Edge of the Wild by Judy Fairbairns
(venue tba, not at Crosspark)
Delicious jam, marmalade, chutney and other produce is now on sale at St Mary’s Church, Totnes – and will continue to be so for some weeks to come!
• jam jars and lids are not needed at the moment!
PARISH NEWSLETTER – the July 2017 issue is online
Parish News July 2017 – this month’s newsletter, compiled and designed by Julian Hall, features 20 pages full of news, articles and information. To receive the extended, full colour version in your inbox each month, please email Julian Hall.
Many thanks to the advertisers* in the latest edition!
Voluntary annual subscriptions for the Parish Newsletter are now due. Please contact Julian Hall for a donations envelope, or see him at St Mary‘s on Sundays.
This issue includes:
- Doing All Things Well – by Reverend Steve Jones
- It’s Just A Thought – by the Reverend Cliff Berdinner
- St Bridget’s Feast Day – by Joy Hanson
- Serving The People Of Devon With Joy At St Mary’s – Julian Hall
- Hidden Stairs And Wall Paintings Discovered – revelations at a church near Tiverton
- Transforming Plymouth Together – a conference discussing social issues
- Gardeners Needed – help sought for St Mary’s small garden
- Working For Human Rights – Liz Hocking reports about Palestinians’ daily lives
To download in pdf format right-click HERE (ctrl+click Mac), or click on the thumbnail to read online.
*remember you can advertise in the newsletter – rates updated November 2016
Clergy days off
Thursdays (Reverend Julian) and Fridays (Reverends Debbie, Jane and Steve) – please respect this by not contacting them on those days!
at St John’s Church, every Friday 5pm to 5.45pm
• all welcome
History at St John’s Church
A series of events sharing memories of Bridgetown in general and the church in particular. Fuller details under Upcoming Events, above.
Pennies for Heaven
There is a collection box at the back of St John’s Church, Bridgetown, every Sunday for your pennies and two-pennies.
The box is titled ‘Pennies for Heaven’.
Churches in Totnes supporting the initiative of Plymouth Red Cross for welcoming asylum-seekers
Jackie Fern and Wendy Stayte, on behalf of Totnes Quakers, are asking if other churches in Totnes would be willing to join with us for making ‘Welcome Packs’ for asylum-seekers when they arrive in Plymouth.
This is part of a ‘Welcome’ scheme that has been run by the Plymouth Red Cross for many years, and the scheme involves welcoming new arrivals when they come to Plymouth, helping them find their accommodation and generally find their feet during their first month in Plymouth, befriending them and giving them practical help.
All of this is done by the volunteers of the Welcome Project.
The part which Red Cross is now looking to Totnes to see if we can help, is the making of the Welcome Packs, which consist of shoe boxes containing toiletries and a few other useful items to have on arrival.
About 300 new asylum-seekers arrive in Plymouth per year, which means about 6 boxes per week. If a few other churches would join the Quakers in this practical initiative that would be very welcome.
We would make the collection point for the filled boxes at the Quaker meeting house (in Ticklemore Street Totnes), and would take responsibility for taking them over to Plymouth.
• more about British Red Cross support for refugees here
You can download an invoice (Word docx file), updated May 2017 with new BACS information, for the core costs (Service, Marriage Certificate, Calling of Banns, optional Banns Certificate and heating if applicable) of a Wedding Service provided by the Totnes Team Ministry.
• full details HERE
• if anyone would like to send us photos from their wedding service, we’d love to have some to post on the website
Rough sleepers around Totnes
We have been advised to call the Police or PCSOs on 101 to report on any rough sleepers in the area, or if we have any concerns about anti- social behaviour.
Please note the above number!
Freedom Centre website
For the most up to date news re the Marketplace Food Bank and The Drop In, visit the Freedom Centre Totnes website. This really replaces the Totnes Mobile Food Bank who are now mainly working with CAP clients. Food donations for The Totnes Mobile Food Bank can be made at Morrisons who have a brown Wheelie Collection bin for them by the Post Box at the exit.
• Marketplace Food Bank is a walk in food bank and they are working with statutory agencies to help those referred. This is also an Emergency Food Bank.
Parish Giving Scheme
There are various people using the Parish Giving Scheme who would be more than happy to answer any queries and help with the paperwork if necessary.
• please contact Julian Hall on 01803 867537 about this in the first instance
Help & Advice
The Need Help poster has recently been updated (March 2017).
• click here to download a printable A4 version
Booking enquiries re. St John’s Church, Bridgetown
Please call 01803 865615 on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 10am to 12noon (enquiries will not be taken at any other times), or email us.
Carolyn & Tony are no longer dealing with this!
• St John’s Hall & Lettings information
• St John’s Hall & Lettings photos
Coffee at St Mary’s Church, Totnes
Servers needed! It seems that quite a few people like drinking coffee after the service, but not many like serving it… Please contact one of the team if you’d like to help – otherwise it’s something that will disappear, which would be a shame!
Food Bank Items
Please check the sell by dates on food bank items.
I have to go through all the gifts and remove those that are out of date, empty the cans and then recycle – rather messy work. Any out of date food sent to the Food Bank which has to be disposed of by them has to be paid for. Also, very sadly, we are unable to give homemade gifts as there is provenance or dating. This is not problem at our fairs or coffee mornings, because purchaser and seller deal directly with one another. Any gifts, if you are unable to leave them in St Mary’s Church, may be left at any time in my porch. I am also collecting duvets and blankets and clothes for Mark, who will be opening the Drop In as a night shelter this winter.
• further information: Liz Waterson 01803 84934 32 Copland Meadows TQ9 6ER
• remember, we would love to receive more toiletries and household cleaning products!
• information about Food Bank opening times is here
Food Bank collections
You can bring your food bank donations – especially toiletries and cleaning products please – to any Sunday service at St Mary’s Church.
No need anymore to wait for the first Sunday of the month. Many thanks to everyone who donates – your help is greatly appreciated.
• you can now also take your food bank donations to Morrisons in Totnes – there is a collection bin by the toilets
• please check all sell-by dates (see above)!
• further information from Liz Waterson on 01803 84934
• more about Totnes Food Bank here
We are always desperate for more volunteer drivers and I was wondering if any of your wonderful parishioners would be interested. If you have a little time to spare and are interested in becoming a volunteer car driver for Totnes Caring, please contact Sue Alford or Jacquie Mills on 01803 865684 or email us.
Thanking you in advance!
• download a printable poster
Totnes Church Services
Below is a handy at-a-glance summary of the various regular services in Totnes.
•click here to download a printable version
• the latest version of this list is also permanently available on our Services page
The Cross in Your Pocket
Several of our ladies have been embroidering pocket crosses – they are free and can be found in St George’s Chapel.
They have been extremely popular and we have received many thanks for them. If you would like to help make some more, please contact Jean Marr on: 01803 847839
• the beautiful cross pictured left (click to enlarge) was made by one of the stewards at St Mary’s Church, Totnes
Every third Thursday of the month at The Seven Stars, between 10am and 12noon. Meet at the large table at the back, behind the bar, for coffee, etc.
• contact Anne Binns for more information on 01803 840146
Would you like to have a roast lunch at the Albert Inn, Bridgetown, on the first Sunday of the month, with members of St John’s and St Mary’s churches?
• to book, please ring Liz Balkwill 01803 863355 or Anne Binns on 01803 840146 by the previous Thursday
The Meditation Group meets at St John’s Church, Bridgetown, on the 2nd Friday of each month, from 7.30pm to 9pm.
• everyone is welcome to attend this informal group
• enquiries to Tricia Stokes on 01803 762158
For further information on any of the above Community News items, please contact Liz Waterson on 01803 849345, or email Liz