Little Melton Parish Council

ALL SAINTS, LITTLE MELTON - Report to the Parish Council 16/03/10

We continue to have a service every Sunday, three Communion services and one All Age Worship. Additionally Morning Prayer is held at 09.30 on a Tuesday. The needs of those in the community and requests for prayer left on the prayer book.are always included.

Children from Little Melton join with Great Melton for Children's Church on the first Sunday of each month. They participate in Great Melton's All Age Service the next week. Families assist at our services by reading etc. Little Acorns (under 5s) meet in Hethersett. We jointly celebrate with Great Melton for Palm Sunday and Rogation.

During Lent a study course is held on Tuesday mornings. It is proposed that a Church Book Group be established looking at relevant books, on a trial basis, perhaps every six weeks.

Special festivals such as Mothering Sunday, Easter and Pentecost and Christmas are well celebrated. The PCC has discussed again the opening of the Church but reluctantly feel that due to our relative isolation this is not practical. However, in addition to Sunday services, people can visit on Tuesday mornings, on monthly working party mornings — Saturdays, first in the month and the Church Wardens have keys and can be requested to meet people by arrangement. Contact numbers on Church Notice Board.

Our particular event of 2009 was the completion of the extension which is now all in good order and paid for! It has made a huge difference to have good facilities to service refreshments and to meet for Morning Prayer, lent groups and PCC meetings. The door is always open during services and the feeling of space is tremendous. Disabled access and storage space are additional great bonuses.

The Art Project in 2009 was a great success (the third one) and caused much interest. Participation with the Nursery and Primary Schools, Hethersett Junior and High School seems to have strengthened relationships and the participation of an artist (funded by the PCC) is very welcome. The nursery and primary schools visited the Church before Christmas and had short services. A coffee morning was available for others to come.

This year we plan an "alternative Christmas Tree Festival." Trees to be made from recycled materials by schools and individuals.

The Friends of the Church maintain their excellent support and have nearly completed the funding of window restoration. This is a great effort and means that the windows are in good order for years to come. The final work should be carried out after this years weddings (5) have taken place and should be done by November. The Friends Car Boot Sale and Salvation Army Concert remain popular and good fund raisers.

We are planning work on the main roof. For many years we have had slipped tiles and sundry leaks; some tiles are damaged and the ridge tiles have breakages. It seems that the tiles currently rest unsecured on the roof timbers so it is proposed that all be stripped off and a membrane installed. Good tiles would be replaced and secured and new tiles and ridge tiles installed as necessary. Quotes are awaited but we are establishing a special fund with this year's Gift Day donations (Easter Sunday). We hope that the Friends may support the work and grant making bodies will be approached. Finances are always tight; our treasurer Chris Doggett does a great job in balancing the books and keeping our spending in check.

The cost of running the Church approaches £20,000 per annum, which is a huge sum to raise. It includes our Parish Share (just under £12,000 this year), insurance, electricity which has risen dramatically in cost, expenses for travel and costs of running services. Most building work is funded by the Friends and the Parish Council fund this year £1,300 for graveyard maintenance. In addition voluntary working parties help maintain the graveyard and the interior of the Church. Cleaning is done and flower arranging also, by volunteers attending on a weekly basis.

Gift Aid is an important contributor to our income and events throughout the year arranged by the Fundraising Committee contribute significantly too. Since the extension was completed the PCC in thanksgiving committed to raising funds for the Wulugu Project, supporting education in Ghana. The initiative is now completed and with Gift'Aid nearly £3,000 added to their funds. We also to continue to support Christian Aid in CA week and at Christmas and in crisis collections. The Ashcroft Project at Wymondham receives Christmas gifts, harvest gifts and Easter Eggs from the congregation.

This year the fundraising group plan:

  • A Meandering Fete 5th June
  • The harvest Supper may take place or there might instead be a
  • return visit by one of the Eastern Arts entertainments.
  • There will be a St Nicholas and Alternative Christmas Tree Festival;on 4th December and in January 2011 the Quiz, Cheese and Wine at a date to be agreed.

The staff of our Church comprises of:

  • the Rev Di Lammas – Vicar
  • the Rev Christopher Mallett
  • and the Rev Mary Kerslake

Mary seems increasingly to be involved with people in Little Melton and with others from our congregation, visits those in need of support often in times of sickness and difficulty. Her contribution is greatly valued. Di is planning a celebration time in September/October called Roots and hopes to hold some special events to which everyone will be invited. Christopher is a very conscientious Church visitor too, always willing to give time to those who need a listening ear. Last but not least, the Mothers Union,. usually about 20 members, continues to meet monthly at the Village Hall. They are welcoming to visitors (fathers even) are always included! We hope there is something for everyone in our Church life and would always be pleased to have any suggestions or feedback from anyone listening to this report.