Parochial Church Council – Report - March 2022 - Lady Jane Deverell
Church of All Saints, Sutton Mandeville
The Church building is in fairly good condition structurally but a certain amount of repair works are required not yet undertaken due to Covid, and to comply with the last Quinquennial Report. A window had to be replaced caused by vandalism for which the PCC received some insurance and had to provide the balance from funds.
Externally the churchyard and cemetery grounds are extremely difficult to keep tidy - two or three volunteers attempt to strim and mow but much more effort would keep it really under control. A successful attempt was made to cut churchyard grass by professionals but the charge is prohibitive for our funds, so any financial help from the Parish Council would be much appreciated, as well as volunteers to help with the work, particularly bearing in mind that many people pass through both churchyard and cemetery on their walks, and appreciate the attractiveness of the surroundings.
At the beginning of the year 2021, Services were still affected by Covid rules so didn’t commence until 4 April, Easter Day, without music, which was eventually reinstated on 8 August. Thereafter, they followed the previous calendar, i.e. Evensong on the first Sunday of the month, and Parish Communion on the second Sunday. Attendance varies from 2-15. Due to the Omicron variation of Covid, the Carol Service was held in the Churchyard on Christmas Eve with a congregation of about 50 - half the usual numbers. A funeral service was held for Gordon Snook on 12 February, 2021, and baptism for George Berry on 22 May 2021.
Fundraising consists of the monthly lottery (*see below) which raises about £700, kindly organised by Kate Clutterbuck. Standing Orders provide a small bedrock with collections at Services much reduced over the past year. Outgoings (insurance, electricity and the share) exceed income. Although there is a healthy sum in bank accounts (around £45,000) two-thirds of that has been earmarked for investment (so nominally available for maintenance), and the remaining third for ongoing costs/emergencies etc.
In conclusion, the PCC in Sutton Mandeville is struggling to see how the church can be kept open and maintained even in the medium, let alone the longer term, with a perilously small and diminishing congregation. This has to be seen against a background of changing socio-economic trends which are impacting severely on our and neighbouring churches and parishes, as those at Church House are aware but appear reluctant to address.
Lady Jane Deverell
Parochial Church Council
More information & historical context:
Fundraising (Monthly Church Draw):
The Church Draw is an important source of income for All Saints Church. The money raised makes a much needed contribution towards funding the ongoing general maintenance of the church.
You can support the church draw by taking out a subscription. The price is: £24 per number for the year (£2 per month) and the prizes are: 1st £40, 2nd £20 and 3rd £10. Payment can be made by cheque or online.