Parish News


ST JAMES’ CHURCH  SCARECROW AND FLOWER FESTIVAL 2017                                      SEPTEMBER 9TH AND 10TH 

 This event will take place in the village of High Wych, Sawbridgeworth, Herts CM21 0HY on the above weekend.  This will be the second year we have run this event.
 Scarecrows will line the main road from The Hand and Crown PH to High Wych School and also the short stretch of road past the park up to The Manor of Groves Hotel. 
 There will also be a display of 250 pairs of wellington boots filled with flowers along the route. 
The centre of the festival will be at St James’ Church – the only church in the village.  There will be parking facilities in The Memorial Hall next to the church and in the school playground on the other side of the church.

 The churchyard will be filled with further scarecrows and craft and other stalls with a barbecue and a children’s trail.  There will be further stalls inside the church where coffee and tea and refreshments can be bought.

 Our wonderful team of flower arrangers headed by Rosemarie will depict the theme of “Musicals” in the church. 
 The event will be on Saturday from 10 am to 4 pm and on Sunday from 12 noon till 4 pm. 

 Late Sunday afternoon we will literally have a “Boot Sale” where wellington boots filled with flowers can be purchased. 

 Anyone is welcome to make a scarecrow - or it can be a character made out of different materials to straw. 

 If you would like a stall please see the booking form and contact Ruth Buckmaster. 

 If you are going to make a scarecrow please ring Janet Bellingham on 07882743627 or 01279 724247 (leave a message and I’ll get back to you) so that I can tell you what day to erect your creation etc or indeed please ring if you would like to help or have any questions regarding the event. 

 We pray for sunshine and a weekend of community spirit and fun.   


  STALLHOLDERS’ BOOKING FORM __________________________________________________________________Name of stallholder ………………………………………………………………. 
 Address and contact number ……………………………………………………… 
 Email ……………………………………..   
 Stall ……………………………….. 
 Days … Saturday   Sunday (Please circle which you wish to book) Payment of £30 for 2 days/ £20 for 1 day due on booking 
 (please make cheques payable to St James High Wych Fundraising Group
  1.       Deadline for bookings 31st July 
  2.       The market will be open from 10 am until 4 pm on Saturday 
12 pm until 4 pm on Sunday.
  3.       Stallholders will have access to the church grounds for the purpose of setting up their stall from 9 am on Saturday 11 am on Sunday.  Earlier access is not possible. 
  4.       Contact point for queries: Ruth Buckmaster – telephone 01279 725428, e-mail:  23 Rowney Gardens, Sawbridgeworth, Herts CM21 0A                                                                          




Sunday 3rd September 12 noon. Anthony’s farewell lunch in church. Everyone is invited.   
Wednesday 27th September 8pm. Meeting in the Memorial Hall to discuss the future of “The Link”. It is important that as many church people as possible attend.     

 Old rectors never die, they just…..(answers on a port card please) 
  I have spent a number of years pondering how to end that phrase.  The original was “Old soldiers never die, they just fade away.”  It comes from a World War 1 barrack room song and was a parody of the hymn, “Kind words never die”.  I know a version for teachers, one of my previous professions, “Old teachers never die, they just lose their class”, but I have yet to find one for clergy.   What actually happens to retired clergy is that after a suitable break of a few months they choose the church that they which to be attached to, once they have moved to new accommodation elsewhere, and then apply to the bishop for Permission to Officiate (PtO).  That gives us the ability to continue functioning as priests but without being responsible for running a parish.  That is what I shall be doing from mid- September.  I have a house in Letchworth Garden City which my son has been living in since I came to High Wych.  He has now moved on so I can have a free hand in getting the house ready for the next major event in my life, getting married to a lady called Helen in April 2018.  We are hoping to have an extension built on the house so that will keep me occupied for a few months.   Thereafter I am sure I will find plenty to keep me busy.  Last year I realized a childhood dream by buying a 5 x 4 field camera.  “5 x 4” (inches, the size of the negative – old fashion film, black and white or colour).  You focus the picture on a ground glass screen with your head under a light tight cloth.  You can buy digital backs for them but I have yet to grow enough arms and legs to pay for one.  Also, I did once write a novel which my sons were very scathing about.  I might try to resurrect it and see if I can con a publisher into making me the next J K Rowling (I can dream!).    As far as church involvement is concerned, I want Helen to have a good look at the churches in Letchworth before we decide where to settle.  When I last lived there I was involved in setting up Churches Together in Letchworth, so I would like to get around to worship with a many of the different churches as possible, something I could not do as a part-time priest in a parish in vacancy.  Once all that is done I may be a few years older than I am now and ready to slow down a bit.    What will happen in this benefice and its three churches?  At time of writing the crystal ball is a bit misty.  Maybe, by the time I leave things will be a bit clearer.  The churches will be in the very able hands of Jan, Jean and Sarah, the Church Wardens, backed up by Roger, Joy and Judith, our Readers, and supported by the other members of the Parochial Church Councils, Archdeacon Janet and Bishop Michael.   
 You will all be in my thoughts and prayers for a very long time, particularly as we all wait to see what will happen in Gilston and Eastwick and the effect it has on the whole area.  I would like to thank everyone, inside or outside the church who has helped to make my ministry here enjoyable and, I hope, productive.  I may sneak back from time to time.  I would like to get a photograph of St James’ new roof with my new camera but I have to wait until the lime trees are pollarded again.  If you see someone with his head under a cloth peering into the back of a large camera, do say hello.  It may be me.   
 I look forward to seeing all of you at my final service at 9.30 am on Sunday 10th September at St James’ Church, part of the Scarecrow and Flower Festival.   
 Anthony Giles, Rector.   
From the Registers 
 6th August Gilston Lily Ann Powell   
 4th August Funeral & Cremation Gilston & Parndon Wood Joyce Kathleen Moore           


Complied by and Starring

On 13th October 2017 at 7.30pm in St James Church, High Wych, West End Musical Theatre performer  Christopher Beeching presents the UK Premiere of his new one man show,  Occasionally On My Back.

Proceeds from the show will go to both St James Church and 
St Batholomew's Hospital Radiotherapy Department.

It was after being diagnosed with prostate cancer and successfully treated, that whilst talking with staff Chris identified the need for urgently required equipment in Barts Radiotheraphy Department.  Equipment that would make the Radiotherapy process run more smoothly for patients and staff a like.  Chris decided to put his years of professional experience to good use and give a series of fund raising performances in aid of the department.
In this light hearted and candid look at @Show Business@, using song, archive photos, video, Christopher Beeching has a rummage around his 60 years in theatre, television and film revealing why he has been Occasionally On His Back!
Christopher's 60 year career has encompassed work as a dancer, actor, singer director, choreographer, designer and as a writer, being short-listed for The Society For Theatre Research, Theatre Book Prize.
Chris gave his first public performance in 1953 at the tender age of 10, and made his first television appearance in 1958, on the equivalent of Britain's Got Talent.  He began his professional theatrre career in earnest in 1959 - as a back end of a cow.

In 2011 and 2013 his critically acclaimed one man show Champagne Charlie sold out London's historic Wiltons Music Hall, and was also lives streamed around the world.  He has appeared in many classic TV series, including, The Six Wives of Henry VII, Pennies from Heaven, etc.  He has been interviewed about his encyclopaedic knowledge of the history of Music Hall for radio and major BBC TV and ITV documentaries 
He has played leading roles in some of the West End's most successful shows: including Cats, A Little Nigh Music, Cole The Card, Gone With The Wind, and worked with some of the biggest names in show business.

For tickets £10.00 including a glass of wine
 phone 01279 722496 
or email

All proceeds from this UK Premiere Performance will go to St James Church, High Wych and the Radiotherapy Department of St Bartholomew's Hospital.

for more information contact:
Christopher Beeching or tel: 00440779 946 0516