News from Water Stratford

DAFFODILS - Fortunately the 2,300 daffodil bulbs didn't arrive in September, the ground was rock hard, by the time they did arrive it was the wettest October on record!

Water Stratford Parish Meeting felt it was time to restock our byways with daffodils, so with the help of the Tingewick and Water Stratford Horticultural Society (Teresa, Barbara and Amanda) the bulbs were ordered including many wild English daffodils. There is something wonderful about Water Stratford, in the midst of terrible times, so many volunteers came forward, within three weeks the 2,300 bulbs were planted. Sincere thanks to all, it took some effort to organise and fulfil, in such awful weather, happily now completed successfully.

Come the sweet spring of 2021, we shall see daffodils dancing in the breeze to help us to enjoy the beauty of our village and parish.

Susan Ford

Parish Meeting Chairman

HARVEST THANKSGIVING - A Harvest service was held in St Giles on the 18th October to welcome our new rector, Paula Smith. It was her first service with us and only the second since the church reopened and it was well attended. The church was decorated with beautiful flowers and fresh produce and the service was very uplifting.

Guy Brogden

REMEMBRANCE SUNDAY - The second Covid lockdown prevented us from holding a Remembrance service but the minute bell was rung and the central Act of Remembrancewas read inside a locked church, and many villagers observed the two-minute silence on their doorsteps.

Mike Edwards

MORE CHURCHYARD CLEARANCE - In two further sessions, a massive amount of clearance has been done. Huge thanks to Guy and all the energetic volunteers who have worked so hard to bring about this transformation, to the benefit of everyone who visits for refreshment and those who tend graves.

CHURCH SERVICES AND ROTA

In a spirit of hope, services have been planned for December and January, but may or may not be able to happen depending on the Covid situation.  For our parish these are:

       Sunday 6th December       10am        Holy Communion                  Revd Ron Bundock

       Friday 18th December         6pm         Christmas Celebration          Revd Paula Smith

       Sunday 10th January        10.30am  Benefice Holy Communion      Revd Paula Smith

In December, the cleaners are Nicky and Suzanne and all arrangers are asked to help decorate. In January, Di will clean and Sarah arrange flowers.

AT THE YEAR'S END - At the end of this unexpectedly challenging year, we may be especially grateful to live surrounded by good neighbours and by lovely countryside. Very many thanks to everyone who has offered help, from shopping to mask-making, a WhatsApp group, emails and phone calls – so many things to keep us cheerful. The Parish Meeting committee, PCC and others have been quietly beavering away to keep things going as far as possible – thank you. 

Whatever kind of, probably unusual, Christmas you are planning (or not planning), I hope there will be happiness in it, and that next year will be easier for us all.  Perhaps we should, like the Bishop of Oxford, this year look towards Easter rather than Christmas – and, in Water Stratford, spring flowers in abundance along the verges!

Sara Edwards