Cotterstock 2016

Sunday 11th December Villagers enjoyed our traditional Carols by Candlelight service.

Sunday 4th December Lucy Horne kindly organised the Christingle service  in aid of 'The Children's Society" again this year.  Lucy and her family had  made all the christingles so that every child attending could enjoy holding one and eating the treats afterwards but with a good understanding of the symbolism: the world, the blood of Christ, God's creations and Jesus' light in the world.  The congregation enjoyed the warmth and vibrancy of the celebration whilst donating to 'The Children's Society' and playing a part in transforming the lives of children.

Tuesday 29th November

At last some good news, we heard that we have been granted £1500 from the Hedley Trust towards the roof fund.

Sunday 27th November Reverend Anne Hindle officiated at our St Andrew's Day service assisted by Reverend David Bond who delivered the prayers and intercessions.  Emerald and Brandon Crozier performed a playlet  based on The Lord's Prayer and everyone congratulated them on how well they did it.  The Church was candlelit for the service and we are very grateful to Brandon for lighting so many candles!  Villagers read poems and passages from the Bible and afterwards everyone enjoyed wine and nibbles.

Friday 25th November Melissa and Rob Williams, ably assisted by fellow American friends, organised, cooked and served an amazing Thanksgiving meal in Cotterstock village hall.  The hall was beautifully decorated with "pop-up" turkeys, bunting, napkins, banners, etc and the tables were laid with linen cloths.  We were treated to a veritable feast of turkey, homemade apricot and sausage stuffing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole and green salad.  Dessert was a choice of pumpkin pie or pecan pie with fresh cream.  There was a fantastic raffle prize draw with 16 prizes and Paul Deans finished the evening Cotterstock style with a game of heads and tails.  It was a brilliant occasion that will be remembered for a very long time and it raised £1026 for the St Andrew's Roof appeal.  Thank you to everyone that helped in any way to make this evening such a success but especially so to Rob and Melissa.

Sunday 11th  November Reverend Anne Hindle officiated at a moving Service of Remembrance and Reverend David Bond delivered the prayers and intercessions.  Les Stark, the chair of Oundle and District Royal British Legion, read the Epitaph and Kohema and Mary Prosser, the British Legion Standard bearer, attended too.  The last post was played superbly by Harrison Smith from Oundle School and villagers read the lessons and poems.  Graham Sands read out the names of men from Cotterstock killed in action during WW1 and WW2 and village children placed a cross on the altar for each name that was read out; Angela Whiteway sang a beautiful solo which resulted in a spontaneous burst of applause. Village children in the CCF, scouts and guides attended in uniform, gave out the orders of service and organised the collection which was in aid of the Royal British Legion.

Monday 31st October

The Leadworks replaced the lead on the South Aisle of St Andrew's.

Wednesday 12th October

E-Bound Security fitted our new roof alarm which should be a deterrent to anyone trying to steal our lead in future.

Sunday 25th September Lots of people enjoyed a Harvest Festival Service with Reverend Anne Hindle. Villagers read the lessons and poems and the church was beautifully decorated with produce from garden and hedgerow.  After the service all of the offerings were auctioned by Adrian Eldridge and then juice and harvest bars were served in the chancel.  The proceeds from the sale of produce will go towards the cost of replacing the lead that was stolen from our roof.

Saturday 10th September The Church was open all day to welcome people partaking in Ride and Stride for the Historic Churches Trust.  Helen and Rowena represented the village and raised an amazing amount of money, well done to them and to Helen for once again organising all the sitters and refreshments.

Tuesday 19th July Our excellent new oak noticeboard was erected in the churchyard. It was crafted by Roly Scotney who donated all his labour and promised to keep it oiled and maintained for the first year of its life to ensure that it will have longevity. It is so nice to once again be able to proudly display the name of our Church and our notices clearly and we are really grateful to Roly.

Thursday 14th July 25 people from Kettering U3a visited St Andrew's for a guided tour of the church with Reverend David Bond and to learn more about our "Bells Project".  It was a gorgeous sunny day, the first for a while, and everyone throughly enjoyed their visit.  Four more groups have booked a tour with David and these will commence in September.

Tuesday 12th July A sad day for the village. Whilst we all slept, three and a half tons of lead was stolen from our church roof and porch. So many people have put so much time and effort into refurbishing St Andrew's but now we are faced with needing to replace the lead or a less expensive material at a cost in the region of £25000; this we sadly do not have. At the moment we have no idea what we are going to do other than getting companies to give us quotes and applying for Faculty to undertake the necessary repairs.

Sunday 10th June The children from Mrs Coulthard's class at Glapthorn School returned to play "Jerusalem" on the hand bells at a Songs of Praise service at 6.00p.m. with Reverend David Bond.  As part of their work on bells, stimulated by visiting the church, they learnt to play the hand bells and the congregation were delighted by their performance.  The hand bells were kindly loaned to the school by Southwick Church.

Monday 20th June The bells were carefully wheeled through the churchyard on a cart (in a way similar to that used hundreds of years ago when they were installed) and then loaded onto a flat-bed truck for their journey to Taylor's Bell Foundry in Loughborough.  It was another moving and historic day in the life of our church.  Despite the wind and rain many villagers came to see the bells make their appearance into the light and out onto the lorry.


Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th June St Andrew's was the centre of the village's Country Flowers and Bygones weekend.  The church was decorated with vintage farm machinery and kitchenalia all displayed with beautiful floral arrangements inside and out.  Beautiful troughs of flowers were exhibited alongside more formal arrangements and it was a truly amazing display.  The Reverend David Bond was available in church to explain to people about our Lottery Funding to restore the bells and the history of them and the church.  Flowerpot men of all shapes and sizes were on show around the village and delicious teas and homemade cakes were for sale in the village hall. On Saturday our international annual duck race took place at Cotterstock lock and we are very grateful to Paul and Elaine Brooker for organising this so successfully once again.  A significant number of people visited our village during this weekend and from the comments we received they thoroughly enjoyed the event. The weekend concluded with a Songs of Praise service at 6.00 pm when Canon Jessop blessed the bells before they began their journey to the foundry. This was a truly community event with a majority of villagers getting involved - Cotterstock at its best.

Thursday 16th June Children from Glapthorn School arrived to have a tour of the church and to see the bells.  They were fascinated to see them up close and to think about the time in history when they were cast.  They produced beautiful drawings of the church, the bells and bell wheels which will be displayed in the base of the tower.  Afterwards their teacher, Mrs Coulthard,  asked if they could come back in 2017 to see the bells when they have been cleaned but before they are rehung and we will be delighted to welcome them.

Wednesday 15th June Simon Adams and Nick Elks continued to work on the project and by 4.30 p.m. the bells were down and on display in the base of the tower along with wheels, ropes, etc.  It was then that a team of villagers descended on the church to clean up all the dust and debris to ensure that the bells and their mechanisms looked at their best.

Tuesday 14th June Simon Adams from Taylors Bell Foundry with Nick Elks and Nick Churchman began the task of lowering the bells.  Villagers were coming into church all day to see their progress and to help by working the winch and providing refreshments for the hard working crew.  It was a dirty job but SO exciting when the bells revealed themselves in the mouth of the trap door. Videos and photographs of the occasion were taken and will subsequently be displayed in the church and on the noticeboard.

Saturday 11th June The bells in St Andrew's church were rung for the last time before going off to the bell foundry to be refurbished and tuned; it was an historic day as they will never sound the same again.  When they are returned we will have a sixth bell to be dedicated in the name of Rita Bond, a hardworking church warden and verger who worked tirelessly for the church for more than 30 years. The bells were recorded for posterity on a CD, being rung individually and together.  Reverend David Bond treated everyone to champagne and nibbles as we toasted this event.

Saturday 21 May Nigel Hill from "Harpur's of Oundle" delivered a most entertaining and informative talk about his time as a drummer in a band through to being a qualified gemologist and goldsmith with workshops in London's Hatton Garden and Oundle. Tina, Nigel's partner, displayed a gorgeous range of jewellery on the night and, judging from the cards that we and Harpur's have received, a good time was had by all. A staggering £1007 was raised towards the bell fund and we are extrememly grateful to Nigel for putting together such a brilliant evening.

Monday 16 May You might have heard the whoops of delight from the PCC as we heard that we have officially received a grant of £49300 from the heritage lottery fund to refurbish the bells in St Andrew's and to augment the ring to six with a new lighter treble bell which will be our WW1 memorial bell.  Obviously we are delighted and looking forward to beginning the project.  Work will begin very quickly now; on Tuesday 14th and Wednesday 15th June Taylors of Loughborough will lower the bells and they will lie in the base of the tower for visitors to see during our Country Flowers and Bygones weekend.  On Monday 20th June they will be collected and taken to the foundry; a visit to the foundry will be arranged in the Autumn when we will be able to see our new bell cast and the existing bells being retuned.  These are very exciting times for St Andrew's.

Saturday 23rd January 2016 a well attended Induction service was conducted by the Bishop of Peterborough and the Archeacon of Oakham in St Mary's Church Warmington to Institute our new incumbent, the Reverend Anne Hindle.  Reverend Anne is now firmly in post and conducted her first service in Cotterstock the day after her induction. We warmly welcome her and look forward to getting to know her better in the coming months.

Sunday 10th January 2016 at 6.00 p.m. Father Anthony Searle organised and officiated at a "Three Kings' Day Service" ably assisted by most of the children in the village. Honor, Alice and Daisy acted out the part of the magi bringing gifts to the infant at appropriate times in the Carol "We Three Kings". Esme wrote a beautiful poem about the Kings' story which she recited and Alex, Brandon, Emerald, Ellie, and Matilda read lessons and prayers very confidently. The church was decorated with candles, Cherrill's stunning flower arrangements and many cards depicting the three kings in various guises. At one point Father Anthony blessed chalk and the whole congregation, including little Aaron, processed out through the North door to mark the frames with the magi's initials before returning through the south door. Many people commented on how lovely it was to have and to smell real myrrh and frankincense as well as using a door they had never been through before! We are grateful to Father Anthony for putting together this innovative service, a first for Cotterstock.








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