CELEBRATION OF CHRISTMAS

As last year we are holding another evening celebrating Christmas at the Church immediately after the Christmas tree lighting on the Green. This will not be a formal service but will present different aspects of Christmas through song, poetry and readings.

This was very popular last year and was especially enjoyed by the young people who attended. Please come along and enjoy the introduction to Christmas in our lovely Church

ALL SOULS

On Thursday 2nd November we are holding a memorial service in the Church at 7.30 where we will be remembering those people who we knew who have passed away.

It will be a short service with quiet music and there will be an opportunity for you to have the names of loved ones no longer with us read out at the service if you wish.

Please let Angela or Trevor know if you would like someone to be remembered in this way.

FILM NIGHT

We are having another of the popular film nights on Tuesday 7th November when we will be showing an excellent feature film called 'God isn't dead'. It is a thought provoking film which is entertaining and not too 'Churchy'

The show will start at 7.30 in the Orbell Room and entrance is free. As usual there will be light refreshments available.

All are welcome so feel free to bring a friend.

!!!±±±***** BATS

Well, we managed to get most of the lead removed from the Church without problems until the contractors turned up for work let week and came across a solitary bat on the parapet. They immediately notified us and we in turn notified the ecologist expecting them to come and move the beast safely. Instead, the bat flew off of its own accord and we ended up being threatened with criminal prosecution and even imprisonment because we had not apparently complied fully with the terms of our bat licence which we had paid nearly £3000 for!

Because the bat discovered was of a different species from that specified on the bat licence, we are now having to await an amendment to the licence before we can even go on the roof to complete the works.

This will inevitably result in additional costs and there is a possibility that, should the ecologist not be able to get the amendment quickly, we could miss the window of opportunity to carry out the work before the bats - if indeed there are any - go into hibernation.

So we have a grade 1 listed building open to the elements because of one bat which may not even actually be using the Church as a roost. You may think this defies all common sense and you would not be alone. In the meantime the PCC is doing all it can to expedite the situation.

OPEN EVENING

Last Wednesday we held the second of our open evenings aimed at thanking people who contribute to the Church financially or in other ways. Everyone in the village was invited to the event and about 30 people were welcomed with a glass of wine and vast quantities of rolls, sausages etc. The Priest in Charge, Angela Hughes thanked everyone for attending and introduced the Archdeacon of Northampton, Richard Ormston who, as usual, regaled us with anecdotes about his work and referred to the the previous open evening which he had attended and the things that have happened since.

Julie Connell our treasurer and organist explained the financial situation and how this is improved thanks to the increased giving following the last open evening but drawing attention to the high cost of running such an ancient and large building. It was stressed that we receive no financial support from the Government or elsewhere other than grants and donations.

Trevor Lake and Steve Carpenter delivered a Powerpoint presentation referring to the various and many ways in which we have been able to engage with the community over the past couple of years highlighting the Orbel Cafe, choir, musical events and Friends of Clipston Church activities. It was noted that it only needs a relatively small number of additional people to contribute regularly to what most would agree is an invaluable community facility.

The Archdeacon rounded off the evening congratulating the Church on its successes and wishing us well for the future

HARVEST

We are not having a harvest meal in the Village Hall this year but instead all are invited to join us for a Sunday lunch on the 24th September at the Bulls Head. You will need to make your own booking with the pub for 1.00 p.m. and say that you want to be with the Church group.

ROOF STARTS!

Monday 11th sees the start of the roof replacement on the South aisle. Work will start with the erection of scaffolding on the outside of the Church and the placing of a site hut in the Churchyard. The inside of the Church should not be affected so all services will remain as planned.

The recent spate of lead thefts means that we still need to be vigilant about unusual activity in or near the Church.

LEAD THEFTS

There have recently been a number of lead thefts from Church roofs in the region. Although we have an expensive and sophisticated alarm system on the roof, these thieves are persistent and we all need to be vigilant. Please keep an eye on the building and surrounds at all times and let us know if you see anything or anyone suspicious.

OPEN EVENING

On Wednesday 6th September we are holding another open evening to which all villagers are invited. The last open evening was two years ago and resulted in a substantial increase in planned giving which has enabled us to contribute towards the cost of the roof replacement. We are now looking to thank those people who have assisted in this and to explain what works are in progress and what we plan for the future. Free refreshments will be available on the evening and the Archdeacon, Richard Ormston will be speaking.

What next?

Once the roof is completed and we have taken a breath, planning for the next phase of works will start. Having cut our teeth on the roof grant bidding process, we are planning to put in a major grant bid to undertake a complete refurbishment of the Church. This could include a new entrance with  flat and level access, new heating, lighting, sound and decoration, and possibly the removal of the pews and replacement with chairs. All this will of course be the subject of consultation before a bid is decided upon. We are probably looking at a 2-3 year programme for this work.

Roof news

The day we thought would never happen is almost upon us. The new roof contract is due to start in the next couple of weeks. The contractors have indicated that work will start shortly with the placing of a bat box in the trees in the Churchyard followed by the erection of scaffolding outside the Church. The scaffolding will be covered with sheeting so that it can't be accessed from the outside and there will be no scaffolding inside the Church. Services during the works should not be affected and the work should be completed by the end of October.

Maundy presentation

A very successful afternoon was held with Rosie Hughes Royal Warrent holder of Nosegays to the Queen. Whilst making a posy she spoke about the history of presenting posies for each Maundy Thursday which goes back for many centuries when they were used to disguise the smells in the streets around the royal party. She showed us Maundy money in their presentation bags presentation service sheets and many associated items. It was fascinating to hear about behind the scenes information about her dealings with the royal family.

We then all enjoyed a strawberry cream tea made with jam made by another company who held a royal warrant. Clipston ladies were joined by many from outside the village who were very enthusiastic about the interesting and enjoyable afternoon.

This event also raised almost £200 for the church fabric funds due to the organisation by Ruth Wallett ably helped by the hard work of the friends of Clipston church.

Pictures may be found on the picture gallery page

BANNER

A well know poem first spotted by our vicar Angela at the Bulls Head include food for thought for those at church. Three banners were required to include the wording which were unfurled at the Easter day service. They were made by Ruth Wallett from Clipston together with two of her quilting friends Judy Ayton from Kilsby and Chris Hunt from Market Harborough. The yellow lettering was machine appliqued onto a blue background with shiny threads to catch the light. They now brighten the church and hopefully catch the eyes of those visiting our beautiful church.

Please look at the photo gallery section for pictures of the banners

Broadband in the Church

Discussions have been taking place recently with a firm who have offered to provide free wifi to the Church provided that they can place an antenna in the spire. Since it will be out of sight and not fixed to the structure this will be a great opportunity to bring the Church into the 21st century and in particular it will increase our capacity to attract younger people to the youth activities and enable us to use the many and varied facilities available through the internet for our worship and other events.

We hope to have the new system up and running in August.

BATS - finally!!!!!!!

A t last it looks as if the saga of Boris the bat is coming to an end! last week we received a licence to undertake the roof work subject to a couple of things being put in place should our winged chum take offence.

Consequently it is now hoped that the roof work will be able to start in August as planned. Watch this space for details

bats again

We are now in the hands of Natural England over our bat situation and the roof replacement. Following the three bat surveys carried out last month, a report and application has been made to Natural England seeking a licence to undertake the work. It appears that there is just one person handling all these requests over the country and there is a 30 day wait before we hear. If everything goes well we will be granted a licence towards the end of July and work will start in August. If there are any problems we could face another winter before starting the work!

The total cost of the surveys and application will be £2,500 and this is all because of just one bat!

To me this is a national disgrace. I am all for wildlife but really this is the tail wagging the dog and apparently there are many works across the country suffering the same frustrations. 

When we are finally granted a licence we will then have to put up a bat box in the Churchyard and a bat tile (whatever that is) in the roof itself before we start the roof work.

churchwarden

Steve Carpenter has been Churchwarden for the past 4 years. one of the features of a growing Church is succession planning and it is deemed to be healthy for a Church to switch between people in key positions on  regular basis. Steve intends to stand down after this year to focus on other aspects of the Church and it is important that we are able to identify a suitable person to take over from him in a planned and smooth manner. The Churchwarden role is very important. It is the Bishops representative at Church level and there are many responsibilities that go with it. However there are also many enjoyable aspects that can produce real job satisfaction.

Anyone who thinks that they might like to take on this role at the next AGM in 2018, please discuss it with Steve or Angela

PCC MINUTES

As of today we are posting the most recent set of PCC minutes on this site. You will find them under the heading of Church documents in the Church information section. With so much happening in the Church it is important that nobody should feel that things are happening without them knowing. Please bear in mind that the minutes are fully approved at the following meeting but changes are rare.

Please feel free to talk to any of the PCC members about any of the issues discussed. 

A hard copy of the minutes is available for inspection at the rear of the Church.

HEALING PRAYER

Over Lent this year the Home Group has been studying the subject of healing prayer with a view to offering this service in the Benefice. The course was fascinating and quite challenging at times and we are shortly to have an awayday with a recognised practitioner and expert before deciding how we will go forward with this topic. Ask Trevor or Linda for more information.

TREVOR TO BE LICENCED

Trevor Lake has been studying for the last 2 years to become a lay reader for the Church which will enable him to take services on his own. This will of course give us an extremely valuable additional resource to increase the potential for spreading the word of God.

The course which Trevor has been following is very demanding and usually takes 3 years but he has recently been told that he will be granted his licence a year early!

Trevor will be presented with his certificate at a special service at Peterborough Cathedral on 23 rd September.