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Safari Supper 2017 - posted 11 October 2017

Friends of Helmdon Church

Safari Supper 

                                     

18th November 2017

6.15 pm - 11:30 pm    £17.50

You are invited to the Friends of St. Mary Magdalene Church, Helmdon, Safari Supper on Saturday 18th November, in order to raise funds for the maintenance of the church building.

 

After a year off, our Safari Supper is back in 2017! You might have been involved in previous Safari Suppers, but if you weren’t, this is a great evening spent touring the village whilst experiencing dinner with a difference; each course is enjoyed with a different host.

The evening begins at 6.15pm with everyone meeting for pre-dinner drinks and canapés at The Reading Rooms. Here the destinations of your starter and main courses are confirmed, with further details of the rest of the evening given after the main course.

The number of venues for each course will depend on the number of people interested in joining the evening.

Naturally, for the evening to work we need enough hosts. Hosts and others providing food will be recompensed.

All participants will purchase a ticket

The cost to take part is £17.50 per person. This includes a drink at the start, but subsequent drinks will need to purchased separately. Bottles of wine / prosecco / beer and soft drinks will be available at the Reading Rooms prior to departing to your first venue.

There will also be a raffle.

All proceeds from the night will go to The Friends of St Mary Magadalene Church, Helmdon for the maintenance of the church building

Please confirm your attendance by 21st October to Angela Goodall

Tel: 01295 760138 or 07766 126598

Email: amgoodall.home@googlemail.com

Address: 3 Lukes Close, Helmdon, NN13 5UQ

 

   

The Friends of St Mary Magdalene Church, Helmdon

 

SAFARI SUPPER

SATURDAY NOVEMBER 18th 2017

The Friends of the Church safari supper. The event would be held in the evening  between 6.15 and 11.30pm and run as follows :

-    drinks and canapés  in the Reading Room.  Participants will be issued with a plan to show where they are going for the rest of the evening.

  • starters at Houses 1a, 1b,1c etc
  • main course at Houses 2a, 2b,2c etc
  • puddings at Houses 3a, 3b, 3c etc
  • coffee/chocolates at the Reading Room ( or a house ? )

 

Drinks for the evening will need to be purchased prior to departing to your first host house.

People providing food would be recompensed.

All participants will purchase a ticket@£17.50

It would be are intention to mix it up so that participants would not be with the same people at each house that they visited. We anticipate dividing participants into groups of  8 to 10.

The whole event would take some time with people moving between venues, so it will need to start early ( 6.15 pm in The Reading Room ).

This will require quite a lot of planning. To help us with planning please can you let  us know,   

 

1.Are you interested in participating?                                                                 YES/NO                                                

  •  Would you be willing to host and provide one of the courses ?

 -   Starter                     YES / NO         How many For: .......... (please fill in quantity)

 -   Main**                      YES / NO          How many For: ..........

 -   Pudding                     YES / NO          How many For: .............

**If the main course was cooked centrally and delivered to you to re heat would you be prepared to host a main course     YES / NO   and for how many ...............

  • Dietary Requirements ................................................................................

 

 

From :

Your full name  ....................................

Guest Name .........................................

Address:

Email:

Contact numbers:

 

Look forward to hearing from you

Please return to Angela Goodall by 21st October

amgoodall.home@googlemail.com

3 Lukes Close Hemdon, NN13 5UQ

Minutes of the AGM Held On 1st August 2017 - posted 01 September 2017

In the Chair - Hugh Walmsley

Also Present: Carol and David Brookhouse, Judith Cairns, Bill Elkington, Audrey Forgham, Angela Goodall, Cliff Netten, Julia O’Brian, Rev Carole Peters-King, Niki Phillips, Ann Smith, Wiggy Smith, Celia Terry, Lynn Walmsley

1. Apologies For Absence: Jean Spendlove

2. Minutes of the last AGM (held on 3rd August 2016)

These were agreed as a correct record.

3. Matters arising:

Hugh said that there had been as yet no progress towards reviving an inter-church competition, although the shield for winning the previous competition was kept in St Mary Magdalene’s Church.

4. Chairman’s Report for 2016/17 Year:

* The Pudding and Pimms event on 23 July raised well over £376, and was enjoyed by about 45 people, on a pleasantly warm afternoon;

* The 200 Club is now in its 7th year, and raises £1300pa each for the Friends of the Church and for the Reading Room even after prizes have been paid out;

* A Poetry and Pies Evening was held on 1 April this year which raised £210, inclusive of the raffle.  A wide variety of poems was read out, some of which had been composed by participants;

* A Car Treasure Hunt took place on 30 July, with over 40 people joining in, and then enjoying tea and cake in church afterwards.  This raised some £190 for the Friends, and Hugh expressed his thanks to Robert Alfandary for all his work in planning Hunt.

Hugh expressed his great thanks to everyone who helped with running these successful fundraising events, especially the members of the Committee, and to village organisations and businesses who gave the Friends donations and support during the year.   The Friends had a healthy bank balance as a result.

However, he expressed concern about the impact of competing fund-raising events in the village, both in terms of securing support on the day and also the risk of overburdening the group of invaluable people who helped run events for the Friends and for other bodies. 

 

5. Treasurer’s report

Julia explained that the Accounts were still in draft form but should be finalised very shortly.  A total of £8,473.31 was held in the Current Account as at 31st March 2017, with a further £2,122.46 in the Premium Account on that date.  This did not include proceeds from the recent Car Treasure Hunt and from the 200 Club; and some £900 was due to be paid to the Church Architect for his Quinquennial Survey.

Hugh expressed grateful thanks to the Parish Council and to the Young Husbands for their financial support during the year.

Thanks were expressed to Julia O’Brien for all her work as Treasurer, and proposed that the auditor be given a token of appreciation for her help with the accounts thus far. David Brookhouse proposed that the Accounts as presented to the AGM be approved; seconded by Bill Elkington.  These proposals were both agreed.

6. Election of Officers and committee members:

The following were elected:

Chairman: Hugh Walmsley

Treasurer: Julia O’Brien [n.b. Julia has since resigned as Treasurer]

Secretary: Cliff Netten.

Committee members re-elected en bloc: Barbara Buxton, Audrey Forgham, Angela Goodall, Cliff Netten, Niki Phillips (with links to the PCC), Lynn Walmsley

6.  Any Other Business:

Bill Elkington, as Churchwarden, explained the background to a proposed reorganisation from January 2018 of the Astwell Benefice PCCs into a single large PCC, with Fabric Committees taking responsibility at each individual church for their own fabric maintenance, heating and insurance matters.  The Summer Fete and Christmas Bazaar would be important sources of funds for the Helmdon Fabric Committee.

Assurances were sought, and given, that the funds raised by the Friends of the Church would, and could, only be used in accordance with the Constitution of the Friends, i.e. for  ‘repair, renewal, rebuilding and maintenance’  of the church building.

This gave rise to a wide-ranging discussion, with further concerns raised about the number of village events in effect competing for a reducing “pot” of residents’ money.  It was also thought important to keep people informed as to what funds raised were being spent on.   And as at 1 August, the PCC had not been given any costings of works identified in the Quinquennial Review as needing attention, so was not yet in a  position to prioritise.   The Committee would discuss further with the Churchwarden in the autumn.

The Friends would consider running another Safari Supper as the main fundraiser for 2017/18, which would also keep the organisation in the local public eye.

The Meeting Closed at 8:45 pm after a Vote of Thanks to the Chair, proposed by Niki Phillips, was agreed.

Car Treasure Hunt Result - posted 01 August 2017

On the afternoon of Sunday 30th July, over 40 people in 12 cars enjoyed a 'Treasure Hunt’, following a 16 mile route around the local area.

Whilst no one achieved the maximum score, everyone did pretty well and the scores were close.  Everyone enjoyed tea and cake in the church after the Hunt.

First place : Ross and Vanessa Vicars, Jenny and Helen Overson.

Second place:  Roger and Val Miles, Alex Corrin and Judy Cairns.

Third place :  Mark, Naomi , Cerise,  Edward  and  Katherine Alfandary.

The event raised about £190 for the  Friends of the Church. 

My thanks to Robert Alfandary for his work in planning the Hunt, and to everyone who helped with the teas.

 

Hugh Walmsley

Chairman

Minutes Of The AGM Held on 03 August 2016 - posted 19 August 2016

In the Chair - Hugh Walmsley

Also Present: Barbara Buxton, Judith Cairns, Audrey Forgham, Cliff Netten, Julia O’Brian, Rev Carole Peters-King, Niki Phillips, Ann Smith, Wiggy Smith plus two dogs, Lynn Walmsley,

Apologies: Carol and David Brookhouse, Bill Elkington, Angela Goodall, Celia Terry

1 Minutes of the last AGM (held on 11th August 2015)

These were agreed as a correct record.

2. Matters arising:

There were no Matters Arising not covered in the Chair’s Report.

3. Chairman’s Report for 2015/16 Year:

* The Safari Supper in June 2015 raised well over £700, and was enjoyed by about 50 people, divided into 5 separate groups, and then mixed further as each course took place in different houses. A very successful evening, made possible by the hard work of so many people;

* Wine and Wisdom Evening on 2 February in the Reading Room, which attracted 7 teams, and made a net profit of £187.  Angela and Julia arranged an excellent selection of cheeses and accompaniments, Niki ran a raffle, and Alex Corrin organised the Wine side of the evening.  

* 200 Club is now in its 6th year, and raises £1300pa each for the Friends of the Church and for the Reading Room even after prizes have been paid out;

*Pimms and Puddings afternoon on 23 July was greatly enjoyed and raised £376.  Especial thanks to Sue Lidgely who stepped in at short notice to run the raffle.

Hugh expressed his great thanks to everyone who so willingly helped with running fundraising events, especially the members of the Committee, and to village organisations and businesses who gave the Friends donations during the year.

In answer to a question, Julia explained that renewed Membership of the Friends became due from the anniversary of an original Direct Debit being signed.  Rev Carole added that this autumn, Friends of each Benefice church aimed to contact past members who had moved from the area as part of fundraising initiatives.

Ann Smith wondered if it might be possible to rejuvenate an inter-church competition, which had been a great success for Helmdon in the past as regular winners, but also helped boost funds.  The Chair agreed to speak to the Churchwarden about this.

4. Treasurer’s report

A total of £6,612.25 was held in the Current Account as at 31st March 2016, with a further £2,121.42 in the Premium Account on that date.

Fund raising had produced £918.00 Profit after expenses, in addition to the sum raised by the 200 Club. This figure excluded the Pimms and Pudding event in July, of course.

The Chair hoped that some £10,000 might be in hand by the time any works arising from the next Quinquennial Review had to be paid for by St Marys.  The Church Architect had been approached by the PCC about a date for the Review.

Rev Carole added that there were match-funding possibilities for monies raised by village organisations, including Gift Aid tax refunds for en bloc cash donations as well as Friends Members’ subscriptions in each Financial Year.  The Churchwarden has details, and Julia agreed to look into the matter.  Rev Carole stressed that St Marys had to meet its Parish Share in order to secure any capital grants from the Diocese, but next year the Share would be £65,000 for the Benefice as a whole, with a further 5% increase on money going direct to Diocesan costs.

Thanks were expressed to Julia O’Brien for all her work as Treasurer, and the Chair agreed that flowers should be given to the Auditor in thanks for her services.

5. Election of Officers and committee members:

The following were elected:

Chairman: Hugh Walmsley

Treasurer: Julia O’Brien

Secretary: Cliff Netten.

Committee members re-elected en bloc: Barbara Buxton, Audrey Forgham, Angela Goodall, Cliff Netten, Niki Phillips (with links to the PCC), Lynn Walmsley

6.  Any Other Business:

There were no immediate plans for fundraising events.

 

The Meeting Closed at 8:10 pm

 

Puddings & Pimms - posted 30 July 2016

 

Friends of church pudding & pimms party

The Shunters

 

On the afternoon of Saturday 23rd July, 45 people enjoyed a warm afternoon in the Walmsleys' garden, which was looking nice, although the roses had finished. The sun shone, but not too strongly,  there was plenty of shade under the trees,  and we were fortunate with the weather. Everyone wore a hat or a fascinator to add to the feel of a pleasant English summer's day.


Alex Corrin kindly served a welcome glass of Pimms, and Amy Ruffley played her guitar and sang delightfully whilst people helped themselves to a delicious selection of puddings, prepared by members of the committee.


This was followed by a quiz about hats and headware, which was won by Mary Shears and Alex Corrin. Finally the raffle was drawn, and much thanks go to Sue Lidgley for running this.


The total raised was £376,which is a great result. Thanks to everyone who came and to those who contributed to making it a successful and enjoyable occasion.

Hugh Walmsley
Chairman, Friends of the Church

Annual General Meeting - posted 19 July 2016

                                          click for poster


Pudding & Pimms Afternoon - posted 26 June 2016

                                          click for poster

Wisdom And Wine Evening "A Lot Of Fun" - posted 04 March 2016


quiz:
 

Over 40 people enjoyed a Wine and Wisdom evening on Friday 2th February 2016 in the Reading Room. Julia O'Brien and Angela Goodall kindly arranged a selection of tasty cheeses with appropriate accompaniments for each table.

Seven teams took part and the questions were a mixture of general knowledge, local topics, and some of the usual quiz subjects. Lynn and I enjoyed setting the questions, some of  which were intended to stretch participants.

My thanks to Alex Corrin for organising  the drinks and to Niki Philips for running the raffle. We made a net profit of £187 and also had a lot of fun!
As ever, we appreciate the support we get for these events.

Hugh Walmsley
Chairman of the Friends of the Church

Chairman's Report 2014-15 - posted 04 September 2015

Barbecue

On the dry but somewhat chilly afternoon of 16th August last year, 50 people enjoyed a barbecue at the house of  Richard and Angela Goodall.

Richard and his family worked hard cooking the meat which was nicely marinated,  and there were delicious strawberries to follow.
For those who simply wanted to warm up, or who were keen sportsmen and women, there were activities such as table tennis and cricket. About £250 was raised for the Friends of the Church. I am very grateful to the Goodalls for their hospitality and to all those who helped make the event such a success.

Music from the British Isles

On Saturday 25th October, about 50 people enjoyed an evening of songs, poetry and dance from the four nations of the British Isles in the Reading Room. There was also a quiz to test our knowledge of the four nations.

The event raised nearly £250 for the Friends of the Church, and everyone  joined in the singing.

I am very grateful to David Marshall, who acted as the compere and put the programme together, as well as singing himself; the audio-visual projection which he had prepared was both helpful (for the words to join in) and also entertaining. 
In addition,  Vanessa Vicars, Fiona Mason, John Coatsworth, and Chris Gartside  all sang for  our enjoyment.  There were nibbles, flags and candles on the tables to create a cafe style atmosphere, and Alex Corrin kindly arranged the drinks.

200 Club

The 200 Club is run jointly on behalf of the Friends and the Reading Room.. We are now well into the fifth year of the 200 Club, and the net income  (after paying out prize money) continues to raise £1300 per annum each for the Friends of the Church and for the Reading Room.

Recent events

The Safari Supper held in June was enjoyed by about 50 people and raised well over £700. I am not clear how often we should hold this event, and whether it might lose its appeal if held too regularly. 

Future events

 

We have not yet made any definite plans. Ideas for the Autumn include a quiz evening and a musical evening. 

In conclusion, I am very grateful to everyone for their support at the events we hold and especially to the members of the Committee and others who help make the events such a success.  I also value the subscriptions paid by the members and also for the donations which we receive from time to time from other village organisations and businesses.

Hugh Walmsley

Chair of the Friends of the Church

Notice Of Annual General Meeting - posted 07 August 2015

The AGM of the Friends of St Mary Magdalene will be held on Tuesday 11 August, 7.30 p.m. in the Church.  All welcome.


An Excellent Safari Supper - posted 03 July 2015

canapes in the Reading Room
Aperitifs and canapes in the Reading Room.
      Centre left: John Brackenboro standing with

          right: Chair of the Friends, Hugh Walmsley.
 

On the evening of Saturday 20th June, 50 people took part in a Safari Supper.

Starting at the Reading Room we enjoyed canapes and an aperitif, then we were divided into 5 groups to go to different houses for the starter.

Main courses were at 3 further houses, and puddings at 5 houses. This meant that we all got a chance to meet different diners at the various venues. Moreover, the rain held off so we did not get wet walking around the village.

Finally,  everyone reconvened at Fountain House for sloe gin, coffee and chocolates.

I have received a number of complimentary messages about the evening,  and I believe that everyone had a good time.

I am very pleased with the money we have made for the Friends of the Church, which is just over £700, a significant increase over the previous safari supper.

The supper would not have been possible without a number of residents being prepared to cook and /or receive guests, as well as those who helped in other ways. So many people helped or were generous in their support, that I will not attempt to single anyone out: it was truly a co-operative village event!

Hugh Walmsley
Chairman of the Friends of the Church

Safari Supper Saturday 20 June - posted 23 May 2015 

                                   click for poster 

 

Safari Supper Saturday 20 June - posted 21 April 2015  

 

The Friends are planning a safari supper on Saturday 20th June, in order to raise funds for the maintenance of the church building.

The event would be held in the evening and probably run as follows :

-    drinks and nibbles in the Reading Room . People will be issued with a plan to show where they are going for the first half of the evening ( with further details after the main course ). The number of venues for each course will depend on the responses to this questionnaire.

  • starters at Houses 1a, 1b, 1c, etc.
  • main course at Houses 2a, 2b, 2c,  etc
  • puddings at Houses 3a, 3b, 3c,  etc
  • coffee/chocolates at the Reading Room ( or a house ? )

 

We particularly need Hosts.  Hosts and others providing food will be recompensed. All participants will purchase a ticket, which will be about £16 per head.  This will include a drink at the start, but subsequent drinks will need to be purchased from your host.

We anticipate dividing participants into different small groups of 8 – 12  at each venue, so people would be in several different groupings during the evening.

The whole event would take some time with people moving between venues, so it will need to start early ( 6.30 pm ).  To help us with planning please can you complete the form below and return it ASAP.


 

To : Hugh Walmsley, 55 Wappenham Road, ( 768837) or email  thewalmsleys@hotmail.co.uk   

 

 or       to Angela Goodall,   3 Lukes Close ( 760138 )  email amgoodall.home@googlemail.com

 

1. are you interested in participating in the Safari Supper on 20th June 2015 ?

-  as a guest                   YES/NO       circle as appropriate

- as a host/hostess          YES/NO        circle as appropriate

                                                                            

2.. If YES as a  host, then which course would you be willing to provide ?

 -   starter                                 YES/ NO     circle as appropriate

 -   main                          YES/ NO     circle as appropriate   

 -   pudding                                YES/ NO     circle as appropriate

If so, how many people can you have, including yourself/selves ?...................................

3. Please list any food allergies .........................................................................................

From : ( your name and contact details) ………………………….

                            accompanied by ( if applicable)………………………….



Music Of The British Isles A Very Enjoyable Occasion - posted 29 October 2014

Vanessa and Fiona singing
Vanessa Vicars & Fiona Mason singing for England.
 
On Saturday 25th October, about 50 people enjoyed an evening of songs, poetry and dance from the four nations of the British Isles in the Reading Room. There was also a quiz to test our knowledge of the four nations.

The event raised nearly £250 for the Friends of the Church, and everyone joined in the singing.

I am very grateful to David Marshall, who acted as the compere and put the programme together, as well as singing himself; the audio-visual projection which he had prepared was both helpful (for the words to join in) and also entertaining.

There were nibbles, flags and candles on the tables to create a cafe style atmosphere, and Alex Corrin kindly arranged the drinks.

There was also a short demonstration of a new form of Irish dance by some local men, whose names I cannot recall, but which may have caused a few chuckles!

Hugh Walmsley
Chairman


Quiz session


Barbecue Boosts Funds - posted 27 August 2014

 

Friends of the Church BBQ

On a dry but somewhat chilly afternoon, 50 people enjoyed a barbecue at the house of  Richard and Angela Goodall.

Richard and his family worked hard cooking the meat (nicely marinated)  and there were delicious strawberries to follow.


For those who simply wanted to warm up, or who were keen sportsmen and women, there were activities such as table tennis and cricket. About £250 was raised for the Friends of the Church. I am very grateful to the Goodalls for their hospitality and to all those who helped make the event such a success.
Hugh Walmsley

                        

Chairman's Report 2013-2014 - posted 07 August 2014

Activities:

Safari Supper

Over £350 was raised for the Friends of the Church from the Safari Supper held on 26th October. The event was much enjoyed by all who took part, and it was a good opportunity to renew old acquaintances and to make new ones..

I am very grateful to all those who offered their houses and their culinary skills to make this event a success. It was a pity there was a bit of rain later on, but this did not dampen our spirits.

Supporters’  Supper

Thirty six people attended a meal in the Church on Friday 7th February, enjoying a chicken casserole and trifle. I am very grateful to Julia O’Brien for organising the food and to those who cooked, served, and washed up. Thanks also to Roger and Val Miles for arranging the drinks. The meal was arranged as a thank you to those who have actively supported the activities of the Friends in recent years. We were pleased to welcome John White, Chairman of the Northamptonshire Historic Churches Trust, as our speaker.

The occasion was also planned to mark the 20th anniversary of the founding of the Friends of the Church.

200 Club

The 200 Club is run jointly on behalf of the Friends and the Reading Room.. We are now well into the fourth year of the 200 Club, and the net income   ( after paying out prize money ) continues to raise £1300 per annum each for the Friends of the Church and for the Reading Room.

 

Grants to the Church

       Of course, the purpose of the fundraising which we arrange, is to assist the PCC with the costs of keeping the Church building in good repair. The Friends gave £6,000 in 2013/14 to the PCC so that the recommendations of the quinquennial inspection of the church building could be implemented.. Taken together with the previous year’s grant, this means that we gave £12,900 to the PCC in a 2 year period.

   It is only with the generous support of local residents that the Friends are able to make such grants. For example, the Parish Council has, in the current financial year, agreed to match a grant of £300 from the Friends for the redecoration of the Church. 

Committee membership

In March 2014, Roger Miles resigned from the Committee, after 8 years on the Committee, including 4 years as Chairman. I am very grateful to Roger for all his work on behalf of the Friends.

Also this Spring we were pleased that Cliff Netten agreed to join the Committee.

 

Future events

Barbecue at the Goodall’s at 2pm on Saturday 16th August.

Musical event in the Reading Room on the evening of Saturday 25th October to celebrate the music and songs of the 4 nations of the British Isles.  

In conclusion, I am very grateful to everyone for their support at the events we hold and especially to the members of the Committee and others who help make the events such a success.  

Hugh Walmsley

Chair of the Friends 

Supporters Supper In A Year Of Special Celebration - posted 09 February 2014

Thirty six people attended a meal in the Church on Friday 7th February, enjoying a chicken casserole and trifle. I am very grateful to Julia O Brien for organising the food and to those who cooked, served, and washed up. Thanks also to Roger and Val Miles for providing the drinks.

We planned this as an occasion to say thank you to all those who have supported the Friends of the Church in recent times, and I believe that similar events have been held in the past from time to time. We can count this as a special celebration, since this year it is 20 years since the Friends of the Church was founded.

The Friends exists as a charity to help raise money for the repair and maintenance of the church building and has done so successfully for 20 years. This has been for 3 reasons :

  • enough people have come forward to take turns on the committee, and I would like to thank past and present committee members for their contributions. And also a warm welcome to Cliff Netten, who has agreed to join the Committee.
  •  a lot of fun events have been organised.
  •  the community is willing to support this cause, even though there are of course many other local groups also doing fund-raising.

 

Essentially the Friends raise between £2000 and £2500 each year, and this builds up into a fund that we can give the PCC when it needs to pay for the works arising from the quinquennial inspection of the church building. So, in the last 2 years, the Friends have contributed about £12,000 to the costs of the most recent inspection of the building.

The PCC also does its own fund raising, and it is really gratifying that the Francis Coales Charitable Foundation  has recognised its work by awarding St Mary Magdalene, Helmdon, the annual award for the church which has “done the most to maintain and keep in good order its church” . That award will be celebrated on a separate occasion –  there will be a special service on Sunday 12th October , probably at 11 am, followed by a lunch and it is hoped that lots of people will come along.

The PCC also seeks and receives grants from other charitable bodies concerned with maintaining church buildings. In particular, the Northamptonshire Historic Churches Trust has been a generous donor to our church, providing £4000 in 2007 and a further £1500 in 2012.

John White is the Chairman of the Trust and I was very glad that he was able to come along with his wife, and speak to us after the meal about the work of the Trust. Clearly, those present shared with our speaker the desire to preserve the lovely church buildings in this county. 

Hugh Walmsley

Chairman

Safari Supper A Success - posted 05 November 2013


Rendezvous at the Reading Room.
 
Over £350 was raised for the Friends of the Church from the Safari Supper held on 26th October. The event was much enjoyed by all who took part, and it was a good opportunity to meet fellow residents, both new and old acquaintances.

Forty eight participants met in the Reading Room for a glass of prosecco and canapes and were given directions to eleven different venues for a starter, main course and pudding.

I am very grateful to all who offered their houses and their culinary skills to make this event a success, and to Iain and Kathy Quiney, to whose house everyone repaired for coffee and chocolates at the end of the evening. A pity there was a bit of rain later on, but this did not dampen our spirits.

Hugh Walmsley
Chair of the Friends

A Few Tickets Left For The Safari Supper - posted 15 October 2013 

This is on 26th October. Start 6.30pm.

There are a few tickets left for this culinary voyage around the village. Just £16  for nibbles, 3 courses, coffee and chocolates .


A tasty way to get to meet some fellow residents.
Contact Hugh Walmsley  768837

Report From The Chair Of The Friends  2012- 2013 - posted 13 July 2013        

           

Words and Music

The Words and Music event in December 2012 was held as usual and raised £477, which was the highest amount from this event for some time. I am very grateful to David Marshall for acting as compere, and for co-ordinating the programme, which was much appreciated.

David also put on a programme of ‘Songs from the Shows’, in early June,  to complement the Flower Festival held in the Church on the same theme. We held this in the Reading Room, partly because of the Flower Festival being in the Church but also as an experiment for a Friends event (since these are normally held in the Church). On the plus side the audio-visual equipment in the Reading Room is now pretty good, but on the other side we had to pay a small amount to rent the Reading Room (whereas we can use the Church at no charge). In addition, I suspect the Church can hold a larger audience. So I expect that where we hold future events depends on a number of considerations and will not be fixed. The event raised £185, which was quite good given the low entrance fee (a deliberate decision in view of the number of activities going on .  Again I am very grateful to David for his work in putting this programme together; I am sure all those who came, enjoyed themselves.

200 Club

The 200 Club is run jointly on behalf of the Friends and the Reading Room. The 200 Club year runs from 1st November, so does not quite match the cycle of the Friends. We are now well into the third year of the 200 Club, and the net income ( after paying out prize money ) continues to raise £1300 per annum each for the Friends of the Church and for the Reading Room. The Club currently has 198 members, so it is not quite reaching the 200 target.

I would like to propose a vote of thanks from the Friends of the Church to the 200 Club for their work in raising this money for the Friends each year.

Other Donations

 

We continue to benefit from generous donations from a number of individuals, and Village organisations (namely the HYHOs and the Helmdon Hurlers), and we are very grateful for their support.

Grants to the Church

Of course, the purpose of the fundraising which we arrange, is to assist the PCC with the costs of keeping the Church building in good repair. The Friends made a loan of £4577 to the PCC so that an alarm system could be installed on the roof following the theft of the copper; when the PCC received a donation to cover the cost of the alarm system , the Friends were happy for the PCC to keep the  £4577 and put it towards the costs of implementing the recommendations of the quinquennial inspection. In fact the Friends agreed to make up to a further £6,100 available to the PCC so that virtually all the important items identified in the quinquennial inspection can be dealt with.                                                                  

It is not clear to me at the moment, whether the PCC will need all this money from the Friends, but if not then the money obviously stays in the Friends’ accounts. For our part, the Friends are clear that our prime purpose is to help with the costs of each quinquennial inspection, so any money that is not needed at present from the £6,100  will be carried forward towards the next inspection.

Looking ahead, we look forward to working with the new Rector and welcoming her to the Committee meetings when she is able to attend.

In conclusion, I am very grateful to everyone for their support at the events we hold and especially to the members of the Committee and others who help make the events such a success.

Hugh Walmsley          

Chairman, Friends of St Mary Magdalene                                   

                       

                       

Annual General Meeting - posted 06 June 2013

The AGM of the Friends of St Mary Magdalene will be held on Tuesday 09 July at 7.30 p.m. in the Church.  All welcome.

Flower Festival Weekend Gets Off To A Good Start - posted 05 June 2013

Over 50 people enjoyed music and songs from the Shows on Friday 31st May.  £185 was raised for the Friends of the Church of St Mary Magdalene in Helmdon. The new spotlights and overhead projector in the Reading Room , Helmdon, were used to their full advantage as David Marshall compered a programme that showcased the talents of local vocalists and reminded us of the classic favourite tunes from the Shows.

The singers included Chris Gartside, John Coatsworth, Ross and Vanessa Vicars, Chris Filbey, Bill England and David himself. Members of the audience were very appreciative and were pleased to sing along in the relaxed and informal atmosphere. The theme had been chosen to complement the choice of theme ( 'Showstoppers')  for the Helmdon Church  Flower Festival, which was due to start the next morning. The Friends are very grateful to David Marshall for putting the programme together and to local people for their support which enables us to maintain our lovely Church.

Hugh Walmsley
Chairman, Friends of St Mary Magdalene

Songs From The Shows - posted 03 April 2013

Ths will take place in the Reading Room on Friday, 31st May at 7.30 pm. Refreshments.  There will be a small charge for admission; funds raised will go towards the maintenance of the church.

Words & Music At Christmas - posted 24 December 2012

 

The Shunters

The Shunters

 

On the evening of 21st December 2012, the Church was packed for the annual Words and Music event.

The Church was beautifully decorated and candles were lit. A mixture of carols, songs and readings was enjoyed by over 80 people. David Marshall acted as the compere, and also acted at different times as Elvis and Del Boy to entertain us. The evening got off to an excellent start with 'White Christmas' sung by David Marshall and Vanessa Vicars. People were pleased to welcome the former Rector, Will Adams,  who gave an amusing but stimulating reading, and the younger generation was represented by Shannon Smith and Gemma Beck. Niki Philips had written a piece especially for the occasion (about Christmas Day 1914), which she read movingly, and Jenny Overson read an extract from 'Little Women'. The Helmdon Clangers (handbell ringers) made a welcome first appearance at this event, and the Benefice Choir sang well. Local musicians (Chris James, Joe Adhemar, and 'the Shunters') played various tunes and songs with verve, and David Mason expertly accompanied the choir and the audience. Solly Olushola managed the projection of a succession of appropriate images and photographs onto the large screen, which proved that you can find lots of things on the internet.


In the interval, Sue Lidgley and Judy Cairns drew the raffle, whilst mulled wine was served by Alex Corrin and Julia O'Brien, with their helpers, and mince pies were enjoyed by all.


The Friends of the Church very much appreciate the support for this event, which raised £476, a healthy increase on the previous year.


My thanks to David Marshall for putting the programme together, and to everyone who helped make this such a successful occasion.

Hugh Walmsley
Chair of the Friends

AGM Of The Friends Of St Mary Magdalene Church - 22 July 2012

                          Report from the Chairman –  July 2012

1. Events held since the last AGM

The A La Carte Group from Northampton came to sing in the Church in November 2011, and was much appreciated even though the group was not at full strength. £185 was raised.

The Words and Music event in December 2011 was held as usual and raised just short of £400, about the same as the year before even though the ticket price had been reduced. Thanks to David Marshall for acting as compere, and for co-ordinating the programme, which was much appreciated.

Thirdly, the gardens of Falcutt House and Stable House were open in June 2012. Just over 50 people came to see them, which was disappointing, but the lack of attendance  was presumably due to the cool and windy weather . At least it did not rain that afternoon! So in the circumstances the money raised - about  £300 – was a good result, although way short of the £500 raised when  the garden of Falcutt House was last opened for the Friends. I would like to thank Mr and Mrs Sandilands and Mr and Mrs Harris for their hard work in preparing their gardens for the day.

  1. 200 Club

 

The 200 Club is run jointly on behalf of the Friends and the Reading Room. The 200 Club year runs from 1st November, so does not quite match the cycle of the Friends. We are now well into the second year of the 200 Club, and the net income (after paying out prize money) continues to raise over £1200 per annum for each of the Friends of the Church and the Reading Room. However, we only achieved 197 members in the second year,  so we need to encourage people to maintain their memberships and try to get 200 members in the next year.

3. Other donations

Cis Terrey left £1000 in her will to be used for a special candlestick for the Church (which has now been dedicated), and to contribute towards the cost of floodlighting the east window. I am very grateful to Celia and her sister who found the balance of the cost of the floodlighting.

Unexpectedly we received a kind donation of £100 from the Helmdon Hurlers.

4. Future events

Words and Music

I expect this event will take place as usual.

 

I am very grateful to everyone for their support at the events we hold and especially to the members of the Committee and others who help make the events such a success. In particular, the Friends expressed their thanks to Will Adams for his support and interest during his time as Rector.

Hugh Walmsley

Chair of the Friends

£300 Raised At Falcutt Open Gardens - 27 June 2012

 

Falcutt house garden

The climbing

roses were

outstanding

 

 

On Saturday 23rd June 2012, over 50 people enjoyed visiting the lovely gardens of Falcutt House and Stable House, and nearly £300 was raised for the funds of the Friends of the Church, which is very good.The weather was a bit on the cool side and it was windy, but at least it kept dry for the afternoon.


My thanks to all those who helped to make this occasion a success, by making cakes, serving teas etc., and especially I would like to thank Paul and Charlotte Sandilands and Simon and Jenny Harris who all worked so hard to get their gardens into such an attractive condition, despite the hostile weather of recent weeks!


Hugh Walmsley

Chair of the Friends

 

 







Words & Music At Christmas
- posted 19 December 2011

 

David Marshall and Rob Rew

David Marshall and Rob Rew

On the evening of Friday 16th December 2011, over 70 people enjoyed the annual Words and Music event in the Church and helped raise nearly £400 for the Friends of the Church.

The evening got off to a lively start with a welcome by Bruce Forsyth (actually David Marshall in disguise), and David then acted as our host for the evening, with amusing jokes at regular intervals.


The audience enjoyed mulled wine and a mince pie, a raffle, and sang some popular carols - even managing some Latin verses very well.


The choir regaled us with songs which they had been practising this winter.


Readings  were made by Linda Adams, David Wright, and Abigail Marshall.


Much appreciation was shown for those who played instruments - David Wright (piano), Chris James (saxophone), Richard Owen (drums), John Plunkett (guitar), David Marshall (guitar), and Rob Rew (guitar) for whom this was his first performance in public, but it did not show !


Our thanks go to David Marshall for all the many hours he put into planning and performing such good entertainment.


Thanks also to everyone else who helped make this event such a success.


Hugh Walmsley

(Chair of the Friends)

Words  Music For Christmas - posted 29 November 2011

This will be on Friday 16 December.

                         click for poster

A La Carte Give Another Excellent Performance - posted 08 November 2011

 

A la carte singers

The A La Carte Singers

photo: Val Miles


On Friday 14 November, A la Carte, a  group of five fine singers (with their equally excellent pianist) from the Northampton Gilbert & Sullivan Group, were return guests of the Friends of St Mary Magdalene.

 

It was another excellent, toe tapping performance.  The group sang their way through a selection of hits  from the early musicals like Oklahoma, to the more recent Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables and Blood Brothers. Before the interval we had snatches of their Gilbert & Sullivan repertoire, and learnt that as ever, the policeman’s lot was not a happy one!

 

Altogether a splendid evening,  thoroughly enjoyed by the large audience, some of whom will, no doubt, after this tempting taster, wend their way to the Group's next Gilbert & Sullivan performance, The Gondoliers, at the Royal, January 16 – 21, which promises to be “a delightful evening of music, movement, humour and wit for all the family".  We are happy to add that, in addition, thanks to everyone involved, £185 was raised towards church renovation.

Return Visit Of The A La Carte Singers - posted 13 October 2011

On Friday 4th November, the A La Carte singers from Northampton will be performing in the Church, in costume. They will be singing excerpts from well known West End musicals and from Gilbert and Sullivan. On the last occasion when they sang here, they were much appreciated.


The performance starts at 7.30 pm, and tickets are only £5, available on the door or from Hugh Walmsley (01295) 768837. There will be drinks available.


Do come and support this event, which promises to be most enjoyable.

Chair's Report At The AGM - posted 3 July 2011

Events held since the last AGM  

The Words and Music event in December 2010 was held as usual and raised just short of £400. Thanks to Vanessa Vicars for co-ordinating the programme, which was much appreciated.  

The Brackley Male Voice Choir came to sing in the Church on 17th June, and about 40 people enjoyed a range of songs. £185 was raised.  

As can be seen, this is a smaller number of events than in recent years, but reflects the small number of members of the Committee now, and also the effort that has been put into setting up the 200 Club.  

200 Club 

Roger Miles, Niki Philips and myself joined forces with Bill England and Eddie Garner from the Reading Room to set up the 200 Club last Autumn. Between us, we found the 200 people  necessary to fill all the membership places. This will raise over £1200 for each of the Friends of the Church and the Reading Room , and effectively replaces the income the Friends would have got from putting on say 5 or 6 events in the last year.  

Other donations  

The Parish Council gave the Friends £200 for the purchase of 2 more tables to match the existing folding table in Church. These have been ordered and should be delivered before the Fete, when I hope they can be first used.  

The HYHOs have kindly donated £300 from the profits from last year’s Summer Ball.  

Cis Terrey left £1000 in her will to be used for a special candlestick for the Church      ( which has now been dedicated ) , and to contribute towards the cost of floodlighting the east window. I am very grateful to Celia and her sister who have agreed to find the balance of the cost of the floodlighting.  

Future events  

A La Carte

I have booked them for Friday 4th November at 7.30 pm, again in the Church.  

Words and Music

Date not yet decided.  

Falcutt House Gardens

Charlotte Sandilands has offered to open her gardens for the Friends in 2012.  

I am very grateful to everyone for their support at the events we hold and especially to the members of the Committee and others who help make the events such a success.  

Hugh Walmsley

(Chair of the Friends)

 

An Evening With The Brackley Male Voice Choir - posted 22 June 2011

 

Brackley male voice choir

The Brackey Male Voice Choir      

 

On a rather wet evening on Friday 17th June, over 40 people came to the Church and enjoyed hearing the Brackley Male Voice Choir.

The Choir has about 30 members, all local men,  and looked very smart in their new outfits. They are currently performing at a number of local venues to help organisations in their fund-raising.

The Choir sang a variety of songs, some well-known and others less so; they also chose a mixture of songs from different countries. 

The Friends of the Church raised £185 from this event and are grateful to everyone for their support.

Please Note:  The Friends of St Mary Magdalene Annual General Meeting is on Monday, 27 June, 7.30 pm in the church. All  are welcome to attend

 

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