Clippesby Church and Countryside Norfolk
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Jean's blog

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(stained glass border from the Margaret Rope window)

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A Message from the Fund-raising Team, Sara, Jane and Rachael:

We would like to say a huge ‘Thank you’ to all the people who helped and all who came along to the three Garden Parties which we held at Clippesby Hall over the Summer months; they made £1697.70.


We three love fund-raising but we realise we couldn’t have achieved this excellent amount without everyone’s help and time so we thank you, all of you, again.


This year for the Norfolk Churches Trust sponsored Bike Ride we made our way to Norwich and walked around the city visiting twenty-eight churches.

Our next fund-raiser is in St. Peter’s on the weekend of the 14th and 15th of this month; it’s our annual “Harvest of a Quiet Eye” exhibition, when we hope to attract people who had friends and relatives who lived or worked in Clippesby in past years.


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More Notes, from Jean:

September has seen two milestone events, for which we offer good wishes and congratulations. One is the Christening of baby Lincoln Lacey on the 23rd. and the other was the Diamond wedding of John and Yvonne McCarthy on the 14th.


We have been experiencing some untypical showers for September more reminiscent of April instead of Autumn, and these have hampered Jonathan’s work on the church path but he still hopes to have it finished for Harvest Festival and for our “Harvest of a Quiet Eye”, which is a contemplative look back at Clippesby, its way of life and people in past times. The photos in the display for the Valentine’s weekend created quite a lot of interest so we thought we would develop this a bit more, concentrating on the period in living memory rather than further back as we sometimes do. Please come to have a look round and enjoy a cuppa and a mardle – we really love mardling – there is no charge and everyone is warmly welcome.


Harvest Festival is on the 22nd of October starting at 11am and will be followed by a simple Harvest lunch in the church. If anyone has flowers or produce and time to give we would be delighted to have some help and we plan to decorate on the 21st (Trafalgar Day)


Coffee, Cake and Chat is on the 4th October, the first Tuesday in the month as usual, do just breeze in if you’ve nothing better to do for an hour or two.


Parting thought:

If I was put on this world to help others why were the others put on?



The Autumn colour of the various trees and shrubs before they drop their leaves is just stunning and then the beauty of their trunks and branches is highlighted as the sunlight catches them; the shining brilliance of white birches stopped me in my tracks today. In Winter the conifers and evergreens come into their own too and we shall soon be pruning the hollies to decorate our churches and our homes. Speaking of which we shall be decorating St. Peter’s on Wednesday the 12th of December and we would welcome offers of help.


November began a new chapter for us with a memorable service for the licensing and installation of our new Rector, Steven, as Priest-in-charge of our Benefice. Since this time Steven has had meetings with the wardens in each of the villages to familierise himself with them all and get to know how each church functions.


Quite a few of us went to the Gt. Yarmouth Minster to hear Archbishop Justin being interviewed by Andrew Marr of BBC Look East; all seven hundred present  were fed with freshly cooked fish and chips, which was quite an achievement and added fun to the evening. The Archbishop spoke to Sara and shook her hand; did anyone else in the Benefice meet him when he was mingling?


Howard coupled our Clippesby Remembrance Service with Holy Communion.  After the service our two ‘There and Not There’ silhouettes went to be part of  Fleggburgh’s Memorial Service.


The annual Autumn Bazaar in Fleggburgh Village Hall is one of our big events; it  takes up a lot of time in preparation, and in running it, but the members of the fundraising team, together with friends from near and far, always enjoy meeting and mardling with everyone who comes through the door to support us. Thanks go to all who helped, to those who gave prizes, to those who stocked and ran stalls, to those who baked, to those who gave of their time, everyone’s help is always much appreciated.


Looking forward now, we have Carols by Candlelight on Thursday evening the 13th of December; do come early to get a good seat for a 7.30pm start. The Clippesby Christmas Choir will be singing for you as usual accompanied by our Rector on the organ/keyboard and our conductor, Pauline, guiding us through and Sally from Repps will be taking the service. Mulled wine and Susie’s hot mincepies will follow the service.

The week before the Carol service, on the 4th of December we will have our Christmas Coffee, Cake & Chat at 11am and please note that we won’t be meeting up on New Year’s Day for the January one but resuming again on the first Tuesday in February. We have a Coffee Morning on Saturday the 15th December in the church from 10am till noon which gives you another chance to come along to see how wonderful the church looks when it’s decorated for Christmas.


There will be two Sunday services in December, Morning Prayer at 11am on the 23rd and a Benefice Holy Communion on the 30th also at 11am.


Our usual Burns Night is being held at Acle Bridge Inn on Friday January the 25th. At 7pm for 7.30pm. Tickets are £22.00 which includes a three course meal and entertainment. For more information you can phone Sara on 01493 368251 or Jane on 01493 740897 or Jean on 01493 367802.


A quick advance peek at February’s Valentine Exhibition in Clippesby Church is just to tell you the Team is planning it to be a mixture of craft workshops where you can come and try your hand at some activities as well as marvel at the hobbies and things that local people get up to. If you would like to run a workshop please do get in touch with us on one of the above telephone numbers.


The Fund-raising Team and the PCC for St. Peter’s Church, Clippesby thank everyone who helped and supported their events in 2018 and they wish you all a HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND A HEALTHY 2019



Parting thought:

‘When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot & hang on. Help is on its way.’

                         Selwyn Hughes

It’s February and snowdrops are peeping through the fallen leaves in the churchyard, and, because Easter will be late it makes other related festivals late too so we don’t expect we will be able to include snowdrops in this year’s Mothering Sunday posies, but we don’t doubt that the Good Lord will provide some other Spring flowers to gather; already I can smell vibernum fragrans scenting the air and I can see the bright yellow flowers of the wytch hazel silhouetted against a blue sky.


Clippesby Church organised its ever popular Burns Night on the 25th of January. Acle Bridge Inn had sent a Chef up to the Highlands to hunt down some nice plump haggis; our Rector, Steven, took dialect elocution lessons for the Selkirk Grace but in the event used an anglicised version of it; Donald, our Aberdonian kiltie, sharpened his wit and his skian dhu for addressing the haggis and he also proposed a toast to The Immortal Memory; Chris’s toast to the Lassies won them over with his charm, especially when he recited Burns’s “My love is like a red, red rose”. Sara, Jane and Rachael dressed in their tartans looked after the raffle which raised £161.00 for St. Peter’s Church. John C. played for us on his key board, rounding off the evening with Scotland the Brave and Rabbie’s much loved Auld Lang Syne. As always we found it a happy and jolly evening.


Sara says:

"The Christmas coffee morning held in the Church on 15th December made just over £174 for Church funds; we had a lovely morning catching up with people.

At this event we launched our St. Peter's little mouse called Cameron, he is now living in the Church, so each month you can read up on his antics. 


On 16th and 17th February between 10 am and 4pm we have our annual exhibition and this year we are inviting people to come along and see paintings and other crafts done by local people, also we have managed to get Michael Purches from Yorkshire to come with some of his paintings and hopefully we can have up to half a dozen workshops happening over the two days. The fundraising team think this should turn out to be a interesting exhibition.  Admission is free.  Refreshments, will be served throughout both days. We hope lots of people will pay us a visit."


Parting thought:

“Each year the Third World pays the West three times more in debt repayments than it receives in aid”.  

                                                                                                       Debt cutters handbook

The  beautiful photograph of daffodils above is as bright as the countryside and our gardens are at the present, full of daffodils, in this, the first month of Spring, despite the March winds doing their ferocious best to beat them down with storms Freya and Gareth.


We have been fascinated to watch a baby muntjac feeding in the undergrowth with its mother keeping a watchful eye nearby, it has grown so quickly as babies of all kinds do and it  is no longer the teeny little fawn at great risk from predators and Winter weather but will soon be able to look after itself.


The peachicks, born last Summer, are as large as their mother but still stay together as a family for the moment. Protecting them from cats, dogs, foxes, buzzards and whatever else threatened them was, initially, a problem but this care paid off and we had lots of pleasure seeing them grow up. The peahen has done a good job of raising them, only losing one of the original five chicks.


A field on the North side of the church had a flock of sheep in it a week ago, they were feeding on the remains of a sugar beet crop; several times they managed to escape from their field and wander about the countryside crossing the very busy B1152; they're not here any longer. On the 'Latest News' page there is a photo of some of them in the churchyard.


Also on 'Latest News' page is an account of our Valentine's Exhibition weekend, which was very different from previous years and immensely enjoyable; and another account of our Coffee Morning for Marie Curie.


We had two Parochial Church Council (PCC) meetings last week ; the second being a concurrent one together with the other PCCs in the Benefice. We discussed the possibility of becoming a unified PCC; the discussion was quite lively but ultimately we ended up in unanimous agreement that the Rector should ask the Archdeacon to explore this for us.


We offer our condolences to the family of Janet Starkings, who was laid to rest in Clippesby churchyard on the 12th. March. Janet was a Clippesby girl through and through; she was born here in South House Farm in 1935 and loved the land and farming . She lavished care on her animals as well as on her children and grandchildren; so much of that love has been passed down the generations ;  for years the grandchildren have been competing very successfully with showing their animals at agricultural shows, all under Janet's encouraging eye. Our Coffee, Cake & Chat mornings in Clippesby Church will not be the same without Janet there. At our last gathering we remembered her in prayer.

Daffodils for Blog




A new chapter opened for Clippesby Church at our annual meeting (APCM) with the election of two new Churchwardens, Sara and Fran, who will be sworn in at the Archdeacon’s Central Visitation in July at Norwich Cathedral. Pamela and I are very grateful knowing God has chosen that the future of St. Peter’s Church rests in such caring and capable hands.


Our Lent Course, ‘Exploring what it means to be human and what it means to be church’, prepared the ground well for Holy Week Services which began in Martham on Palm Sunday with a procession from The Green to St Mary’s Church and continued throughout the week with a Service of Compline in each of the four benefice churches followed by a Maundy Service – with feet washing – in Martham; there were Good Friday devotions at Repps and Martham and a lovely Choral Evensong at Thurne. On Good Friday evening we were treated to an absolutely amazing experience in Repps Village Hall, a film performance of St. John’s Passion with Bach’s divine music.


Easter Day started off perfectly with a Sonrise Service in Clippesby Church at 8am. The service began with the congregation gathered outside the church around the Easter fire, the four Easter Candles were then lit from the fire, one from each of the churches in the benefice. We then entered the church and processed up the Nave where the candles were placed either side of the Altar.


We sang a hymn and had a gospel reading then we gathered at the Font to re-affirm our Baptism vows; Steven sprinkled water from the Font over the congregation. After prayers we had the final hymn “Thine be the Glory”, which everyone sung out loud. The service was really lovely - and emotional – and we would highly recommend that, next year, other people join us for it really is the best way to start Easter Day.


Breakfast was served afterwards, we had sausage and bacon rolls with most of us eating outside enjoying the sunshine.


The Rector and Emma have quickly become involved in the life of our benefice entering into all aspects of it and showing support for social activities, schools and local businesses, which is very encouraging; Steven’s offer of a blessing for the new Base Camp at Clippesby Hall was very much appreciated.


Sadly Diane Bell passed away this April and we send condolences to Simon and to her children. Diane was such a warm and lively person that she is greatly missed by her friends as well as by her family.


Future Service patterns have changed for all our Churches, for Clippesby this means that Sunday services will begin at 9.30am on the second and fourth Sundays of the month and will be a service of Holy Communion. Evening Prayer will continue on Wednesdays at 4pm until the clocks go back in October. St. Peter’s is open every day for prayer and reflection.


Sara and Jean





Are there other Norfolk mawthers around - or chaps - who always watch the trees coming into leaf to check out the old rhyme?

“If the ash comes out before the oak we shall surely have a soak,

But if the oak comes out before the ash we shall only have a splash.”

Most years there’s hardly any time difference and it’s difficult to know which tree leafs first but this year the oak won by almost a month so, are we facing another hot, dry summer I wonder? The beautiful blue spruce in my garden is suffering from lack of water and looking very brown, how much longer can it survive? Maybe as global warming continues it will be replaced by an olive tree.


Sara and Fran, having responded to the call for a greater commitment to the Church, will have a support group of friends and family in Norwich Cathedral on June the 11th to witness them make their vows and get sworn into office as Churchwardens by the Archdeacon of Norfolk.


The Fund-raising Team’s report follows. They have been pretty active this month doing remarkably well in fostering a community spirit and helping to keep St. Peter’s Church alive.


‘On a cold rainy Saturday night on 4th May the fundraising team managed to carry on with a smaller garden party than originally planned, in the new games room at Base Camp, Clippesby Hall, we banked £104.50 from the event. Thanks go to the people who helped that evening. 

Our larger garden party will have already happened by the time you read this, as it will have taken place on bank holiday Sunday in the walled garden at Clippesby Hall.


We do still have some tickets left for the dinner / disco at Filby bridge on 16th November it's a 3 course meal costing £25 with £2 of ticket price going to Church funds , please contact Sara on 01493 368251 or Jane on 01493 740897 for more information’ 


Diary dates for June:

All are welcome to join in with our services and events and the church is open daily.

Tuesday 4th at 11am in church        Coffee, Cake & Chat

Wednesday 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th at 4pmEvening Prayer in church

Sunday 9th at 9.30am in church         Holy Communion

Sunday 23rd at 9.30am in church                  Holy Communion


Parting thought:

“The greatest saints of God have been . . . intensely human and loveable people with a twinkle in their eyes”James Philip

Sara & Jean  

June honeysuckle