April 2023 News

Colin Dixon, Chair of the Friends of St Mary’s, writes:

Our Next Event

The first Friends fundraiser for 2023 will be on Saturday 22nd April and is the all-day Festival of Words.

This is thanks to the amazing kindness of Debbie Young who has organised the event to benefit the Friends of St Mary’s. Thank you Debbie. The full itinerary and the buying link for tickets is on the Hawkesbury Upton Literature Festival website here. It will be a full day from 10.30am to 5pm with a break for lunch. There will be an optional lunch of quiche, salad and fruit in the Malthouse for £10 per head, bookable only in advance. I shall be giving a talk on the language of bells at the event and there will be a demonstration of bell ringing.

Other Events for 2023

Other Friends’ events for this year will be:

  • An Open Tower Weekend, which was a great success last year – it will be held in the summer and the date will be announced next month.
  • The FOSM AGM will be held this year on Sunday 25th June followed by Evensong.
  • The renowned Friends of St Mary’s Pimm’s Tent which has become established in its new place on the far side of the show ground, on Show Day, Saturday 26th August.
  • We are anticipating a joint event with the Village Hall in the autumn, follow the success of the Gin Jolly last autumn.
  • The Friends of St Mary’s Nine Lessons and Carols will be held on Sunday 17th December.

We are hoping to run other events during the year and suggestions are welcome.

Our famous Pimm’s Tent at Hawkesbury Show on the last Saturday in August

Current Projects

The south side of the churchyard has been cleared by Tom Hodder’s crew and is looking very smart. We are currently debating whether to plant it with shrubs to break up the expanse or to leave it as grass. Any suggestions or help will be very much appreciated.

We have two tonnes of pea gravel ready to go on the paths as soon as the weather permits. We will need to kill off the weeds first to stop them growing up through the new gravel. All offers of help with the raking will be appreciated.

We will soon be restarting the monthly cycle of weeding and clearing up the churchyard and Peter Setterfield has been marshalling his troops to mow the grass during the summer.

The church will be open every day during the summer and we shall need to make sure that the churchyard is tidy as it is always the backdrop to visitors’ photographs. We don’t want the churchyard showing us up.

The discussions about the new eco-toilet for the churchyard are still ongoing. it is a PCC matter and the Friends have an interest but only because we are the fundraising arm of the church and may make a donation towards it in the future.

Please Join Us!

Finally, if there are like-minded people in the parish who are still not members of the Friends of St Mary’s, please join! Our sole purpose is to support St Mary’s Church to stay open and beautiful. You can join online here.