PCC Minutes - June 2014

A Meeting of the Parochial Church Council of St Mary's Barnard Castle with Whorlton held on Monday 23rd June 2014 at Whorlton church and village hall at 7.30pm.

An act of worship took place in the church

1. Present

Rev Andy Miller (Chair), Alec Harding , Ann Woodward, Linda Alderson, John Emerson Keith Miles, Margaret Miles, Sue Peat, David Bailey, Astley Fenwick

2. Apologies

Jane Goldberg David Blakely, Robert Stenlake, Louise Hosey, Frances Stenlake, Debbie Steele,

3. Declarations of Interest


4. Items for Any Other Business

Cathedral pilgrimages

5. Minutes of the PCC meeting held 19th May 2014

These were agreed as a true record and signed

6. Matters Arising

a) Fit and Proper Person Declaration

There are still 4 of these outstanding. Forms to be filled in are in Barnard Castle church vestry

b) Barnard Castle church

i) Lighting: Alec reported that Envirolux were waiting on a delivery of some new ‘tracks’ for the faulty fittings

ii) Bell chamber repairs: Dave Bailey reported that the work was still to be carried out. The bell chamber was very dusty but he had noted some twigs from nesting birds in the chamber but saw no sign of birds having accessed the area.

iii) Inspecting architect: the Quinquennial report would follow a visit by our new inspecting architect on July 17th/18th 2014.

c) Whorlton

i) Electrics/heating: Astley Fenwick reported that the requests for tenders had been issued to three companies for return within the next 2 weeks.

ii) Bell Chamber: Ann Woodward reported that the work on the bell chamber had been delayed because of holidays and was likely to take place after the summer.

d) Mission

i) Commemoration of the outbreak of WW1: Andy Miller had met with Iris Hillery and Allan Jones to discuss this. Prayers would be offered next to the Memorial doors in Barnard Castle on 4th August 2014 at 10am/12 noon/2.00pm and 4.00pm and a short act of remembrance would take place at 6.00pm. It was hoped that the other ministers from town churches would be involved. Iris was dealing with publicity

ii) The Pilgrim course: Keith & Margaret Miles felt the course was going well. It wasn’t ‘heavy’ but introduced aspects of the Christian faith in an accessible way.

iii) Whorlton: An Woodward reported that 19 people (4 dogs and a mobility scooter) had undertaken the walk from Whorlton to Wycliffe on a lovely summer’s day and enjoyed tea together back at the village hall. The ‘Hymns and Pimms’ service was coming up (29th June)

iv) Green Lane School music: Alec Harding had approached a possible music teacher from the Cathedral who might have been able to lead hymn singing practice but the approach had not borne fruit.

v) Everybody Welcome: the working party had produced a schedule of actions which were being followed up. One simple action involved rationalising collecting hymn books after the service to prevent people going out of the church into the porch to hand in their books only to have to return for refreshments: from the coming Sunday the congregation would be asked to leave their books at the end of pews fro collection.

vi) Website: the change of ‘platform’ was underway and would ‘go live’ in October after a month’s trial in September

e) Parish Hall lease.

Sue Peat and Robert Stenlake were to renegotiate this with the PHA.

7. Finance

a) Treasurer’s report and budget:

The treasurer’s report (which had been circulated) was received with the PCC noting the budget prepared for July 2014 – June 2015 and the fundraising target of £9000.

The PCC unanimously agreed to the treasurer’s suggestion that a donation of £2000 be used to contribute towards the church’s utility bills. This decision would be communicated to the anonymous donor.

b) Stewardship group

The recent appeal had eased the church’s finances somewhat for which the stewardship group were grateful. Thank you letters had been issued. However, in the context of the effort involved the response had been disappointing and the group did not think a similar appeal should take place for the foreseeable future.

As Local Giving Officer Keith informed the PCC that he would be seeking to place articles/snippets about Christian discipleship and generosity in the Pilgrim, the newssheet and the website and would co-ordinate content with the Vicar.

8. Committee and group reports

i) Wardens report:

John Emerson and Dean Tomlinson had cleared the gutters and soak-aways at Whorlton. The downspout behind the vestry east wall had been totally clogged. Ann Woodward expressed her thanks for the work done…and wondered whether the duo might return ‘after the leaves had fallen?’ John undertook to return in the autumn.

John Emerson had also cleared a blocked drain by the boiler room at Barnard Castle.

The Vicar placed on file (church log/terrier) correspondence with the County Council about the Non Parochial Burial Ground. The end result of a great deal of work was that the County council would continue to receive fees for this area and maintain it (as Teesdale District Council had done since 1976). It appeared that there was no procedure with the Ministry of Justice to formally close the NPBG so technically its care rested with a (defunct) Management Committee appointed by Trustees. Hopefully the paperwork placed with church records would save a future PCC/Vicar and Wardens time and effort in the future! Dave Bailey was continuing his labour of love in creating an up to date plan of the area.

ii) FunSoc: a number of events were upcoming: organ recitals, a guitar concert; a coffee morning; cream teas at the Vicarage.

iii) Communications group: the group had been working on issues surrounding the website. The Pilgrim committee had agreed that back issues of the Pilgrim could be placed on the website (two months after publication)

iv) Shared Ministry Development Team: the group were planning a day of prayer for September 14th 2014. Iris Hillery and Allan Jones had attended a labyrinth workshop and were seeking to create a small working group to publicise the church labyrinth and encourage its use.

9. AOB Cathedral Pilgrimages:

The Vicar wondered whether the PCC felt that congregation members would appreciate a Pilgrimage to the Cathedral. The Cathedral offered such events over the summer. He was encouraged to sign people up for a date in August/September.

Ann Woodward informed the PCC that the Whorlton Village Community Association had offered a small donation to the church following a recent Jazz evening and the Pub had given the proceeds a of a raffle to the church. The Vicar had written to thank the donors.

10. Date of Next Meeting

July 14th at Barnard Castle: 7:30pm.

The meeting closed at 8.50pm

Follow us on Facebook

Get more updates and engage with the church community on our Facebook page


St. Mary’s is open for private prayer each weekday from 10.00am – 4.00pm

Learn more ›