Vicar’s Letter July & August 2019

Bollington Festival [more here]

…was a really busy but enjoyable fortnight for St Oswald’s, starting off with our Camel Train in the Parade then hosting the mesmerising Model Railway Exhibition, both made possible by the creative talents of Bev and Steve. This was followed a few days later by a whole variety of our brilliant and dedicated Arts & Crafts Group’s train-themed handicrafts which were out on display for the remainder of the Festival, alongside some colourful contributions from Praise & Play and RiCH children, plus the beautiful winged creatures captured in our local embroiderers’ butterfly nets. Then there was a fabulous Print-making Day Workshop run by the lovely and very talented Debbie Tracey-Carney, a former member of our congregation now based in the Isle of Man. Later that first week, thanks to Lorraine and Dave and their willing kitchen staff, we hosted another hugely successful Big Brekkie fundraiser for Christian Aid Week, with bacon butties enjoyed by several groups of children from Bollington Cross School. We welcomed baby Elsa at her Christening on Saturday 18th before the William Byrd Singers presented an excellent acapella concert to round off our first week of Festival events.

In the second week we were pleased to host the Diocese of Chester’s roving exhibition “Journey into Light” which included many very moving canvases of original therapeutic artwork created by prisoners from HMP Styal and Thorn Cross. During this week, our RiCH Group children also met as usual on the Thursday afternoon and many of them were inspired to create their own personal art canvases depicting what belonging to this Group means to them. Our three exhibitions attracted a good cross-section of visitors over a broad age range from our local community (plus people travelling from further afield). The “Journey into Light” provided a stunning backdrop for a vibrant Gospel Train led by Maggie and our church choir and musicians, augmented by an enthusiastic choir of children from Bollington St John’s School and applauded by appreciative visitors from Mount Hall Nursing Home. It was fitting that on the Thursday we could offer space, even amidst the artwork on display in church, for the late Jean Ransley’s funeral, safe in the knowledge that she had over many years been a stalwart supporter of Bollington Festival and an encourager throughout her life of art and music appreciation.  The next day there was an opportunity to share in a meditative Stations of the Cross based on the emotive canvases around us, and on Saturday we enjoyed an incredible variety of music performed by the amazing young composer and musician, Joe Riley. That second week ended with a calming evening of Taize worship, led by Elaine and Chris and members of our choir and Music Group (including Peter Spooner who kindly stepped in at the last minute for us). This closing service was in contrast to the rather louder Big Top Worship Service which had been held on the first Sunday of the Festival, but proved equally ecumenical!

Throughout the Festival fortnight, a stalwart and faithful few from our congregation maintained a cheerful and friendly presence within St Oswald’s, opening our doors and welcoming visitors from far and wide, supplying them with copious amounts of coffee and tea, delicious home-made cake and the occasional glass of Prosecco! Thanks to those people who were so generous with their time and skills (including especially our two dedicated Churchwardens and Julie our PCC Secretary), we were able to offer warm hospitality to all who ventured in, many for the first time even though perhaps they had lived in the village for years!  

And finally, a huge thank you to our friend Audrey Downes, who not only skilfully created, but also daily maintained, the beautiful floral garland which greeted everyone who stepped into our entrance porch, providing a glorious reminder to one particular couple who were recalling their wedding service held here during the very first Bollington Festival!  

It was hard work but a pleasure to take part in such a fantastic community event over those hectic two weeks in May! We must thank the Festival events Co-ordinator, Jose Spinks, for all her organisational skills, and her unbounded encouragement and enthusiasm! We look forward to the next Bollington Festival (in four or five years’ time perhaps?) when once again (thankfully bolstered by our growing group of “Friends”) St Oswald’s may offer a truly welcoming performance and worship space, opportunities to build friendships and share refreshments, the encouragement of local creative talent and the gift of time for deep reflection on the meaning of life – but also a chance to enjoy ourselves and have fun together here in our unique place at the heart of our parish community!

Every blessing,

Veronica

Bollington Festival 2019

Come and celebrate Bollington Festival with us here at St Oswald’s!
We are hosting a whole variety of events and services here during the Railway/Journeying themed Festival Fortnight – do come along and take part in what’s going on! Refreshments provided during exhibitions and after concerts!

Saturday 11 May: Festival Parade through Bollington
starting at 11am at the Poachers Inn:

Be wise and join in our Camel Train (costumes optional!)

Saturday 11 May: 12noon till 5.00pm and Sunday 12 May: 11.00am till 4.00pm: Model Railway Enthusiasts Exhibition in St Oswald’s ChurchSuggested donation: Adults £3.00  – but free entry for children!

Sunday 12 May: 11.00am Worship Service in Festival Marquee on the Rec

Guest Speaker: David Maidment, founder of the Railway Children charity

Plus Puppet Show (& the chance to try out these puppets after the service)

Please note: No 10.30am service at St Oswald’s this Sunday!

Saturday 11 May till Monday 27 May: St Oswald’s Arts & Crafts Group Exhibits on show –

some items to be sold at Grand Auction on Sunday 2 June during our next Afternoon Tea & Cake event 3.00pm till 5.00pm

Monday 13 May: 5.00pm till 7.00pm Launch Event in St Oswald’s for Bollington Embroiderers Group exhibition (thereafter this will be open to view between 4.00pm and 7.00pm Tuesday 14, Wednesday 15, Friday 17 and Saturday 18 May)

Wednesday 15 May: 10.00am till 8.00pm: Make Your Mark: Printmaking Techniques for the reluctant artist! Come along and be led by Debbie Tracey – our special guest artist now based in the Isle of Man – no prior skills needed! Stay for as long as you like – contributions towards cost of materials welcome!

Friday 17 May: 8.00am till 11.00am: Big Brekkie fundraiser for Christian Aid:

Come and share breakfast in St Oswald’s and raise money for those who are hungry across the world

Saturday 18 May: 10.00am till 12noon: Donald Judge presents a Music Workshop for all ages, tracing the history of the railway coming and going in Bollington! All welcome: Tickets £5.00 from Festival Box Office or on the door


Sunday 19 May:
10.30am at St Oswald’s
Family Communion Service

All Welcome to our mid-monthly family-friendly service of Holy Communion

Sunday 19 May: 7.30pm: William Byrd Choir Concert: “The Singing Will Never Be Done” A varied programme of delightful music: Tickets £12.50 from Festival Box Office or on the door

Tuesday 21 May: 7.00pm till 8.00pm Launch Event of Travelling Exhibition “Journey into Light”: Art created by prisoners from HMP Styall and HMP Thorn expressing their experiences and background stories: Open for viewing thereafter at the following times:
Wed 22 May: 10am till 12noon, 4pm till 7pm; Fri 24 May: 10am till 12noon, 2pm till 5pm; Sat 25 May: 10am till 12noon, 4pm till 7pm; Sun 26 May: 1pm till 3pm; Mon 27 May: 10am till 12noon, 2pm till 5pm.

Wednesday 22 May: 2.00pm: Gospel Train! An interactive Praise Event, with local amateur singers and musicians, including children from Bollington St John’s School. Come along and join in!

Friday 24 May: 7.30pm: “Stations of the Cross” led by Revd Canon Veronica Hydon: offering a simple meditation on our own journeys through life, reflected in the Christian story of Holy Week and Easter. All welcome. Refreshments afterwards.

Saturday 25 May: 2.00pm: Joe Riley and Friends: a musical event showcasing the talent of Joe Riley, a Year 7 composer, songwriter and performer. Come along and support this emerging young Bollington musician!

Sunday 26 May: 4.00pm: Taize Worship Service: prayer, song, readings, silence, thanksgiving. Followed by simple refreshments

Every blessing as we celebrate so many different facets of our life together within this community!

Veronica