All Saints’ ChurcH Hartford

All Saints’ Church Hartford

The Hollow

Hartford, Huntingdon. PE29 1XP


Revd Geoff Boucher


on 01480 461846

The Church by the River

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2017 Report and Accounts for the Parochial Church Council

All Saints’ Church, Hartford

Aims and Objectives

All Saints Parochial Church Council (PCC) has the responsibility of cooperating with the incumbent, the Reverend Geoffrey Boucher, in promoting the ecclesiastical parish, the whole mission of the Church, pastoral, evangelistic, social and ecumenical.  We are called to be a local church, learning and growing together, rooted in the love of God, and bound up in all sorts of everyday ways with the life of our community.  Our mission is to reach open hearts with the love of Christ, and to help all the people of Hartford to find Christ, to be found by Him, and to respond to His love through the life and worship of their Parish Church.

The PCC is committed to enabling as many people as possible to worship at our church and to be part of the parish community at All Saints. In addition to our normal Sunday services regular monthly Communion services are held, an evening service for healing in church and a morning service at Hunters Down. Home Communion is taken to those in need. Monthly Sunday School and a weekly Tots Praise run during term time. Reaching out to the wider community various activities are held in our Church Room some run by members of our church family and others through the hire of the room by external groups.

Worship and Prayer

As of December 2017 the total number on the Electoral Roll was 83 of which 48 were residents and 35 non-residents of the parish.

The average Sunday 11am service attendance was 48 adults and 2 children. The average bimonthly 8.30am service was 5, the monthly 6pm service was 8 and the monthly healing service was 9.

The Hartford Schools Christingle service was very well attended, 140 adults / 105 children, as was our Carol service,

120 adults / 7 children, and Nativity service, 108 adults / 41 children.

During the year 20 baptisms, 7 weddings, 2 renewal of vows, 9 funerals in church and 6 at the crematorium, 4 memorial services and 3 interments of ashes took place.

Rector’s Report

Our life as the church at All Saints Hartford continued to flourish in 2017 through the enthusiastic and energetic commitment of so many. Worship and prayer are at the heart of who we are and what we do, and it continues to be a joy and encouragement that there is real and deep commitment to regular worship and the life of prayer. Thank you to the many voices who contribute to our worship in your speaking, singing and playing, and in your prayerfulness.

We have been blessed to have Reverend Amanda O’Neill at the heart of our community for the past four years, to have shared in her development as priest and to have received from her love, from her life of prayer and relationship with The Lord, and from her wisdom. Amanda will complete her time at Hartford at Easter 2018 and we pray that she will continue to be blessed and to be a blessing in all that she does.

There was a lot of change in leadership roles in 2017 - Two new churchwardens, a new secretary and a new treasurer. The change was managed seamlessly by all involved and we continue to be very fortunate in the leadership of our church, which is conducted with deep commitment and professionalism and great grace. There have been many helpful discussions at PCC meetings, characterised by clear speaking and good listening. The conversation about our Mission Giving was one particular joy.

The offering of hospitality is a defining characteristic of the life of All Saints Hartford, as is evident from the reports below. There is such blessing in every meal and every cup of tea that is offered in the church room throughout the year.

The church building, church room and churchyard are all beautifully cared for. The opening and closing of the building, cleaning, managing the heating, painting, varnishing, plastering, brass polishing, weeding, rose pruning, flower arranging, ordering of church supplies, counting of collections – all of these things, and many others, just seem to get done.  Thank you to all of you who take responsibility, who see what needs to be done and do it!

There was plenty of social and fundraising activity in 2017 including the wonderful Open Gardens weekend, the Art Exhibition and the Autumn Fayre. Our thanks to all involved and to the webmaster and Hartfordian who let us know what is happening and celebrate what has happened.

We welcomed Cydney Dobbs to speak to us about Fusion and its work with teenagers, and Natasha Clarke to speak about Secondary Schools. Following this, a monthly Breakfast Club has been started in the church room for teenagers and will continue through 2018.

Plans for 2018 include a Parish Giving Day when we will celebrate the variety of ways that we offer our time and energy, skills and money in our church community, and invite others to join us. The day will also provide a particular opportunity for members of both the church and the wider community to join the Parish Giving Scheme to support the church financially.  Plans for restoration work to the church tower are currently being drawn up. In July we will welcome Kate Baker who will serve her curacy with us.

Choir – Linda Davies

We are very fortunate at Hartford to have a choir of dedicated members who come to church for 10.00am every Sunday to rehearse before the service.  They all enjoy singing and I hope they help you to worship and feel confident to join us in praising God. We sing a wide variety of music and are always open to learning new hymns and songs.

My thanks go to Helen Dowzall for taking on playing for services when I am unable to attend.  She is becoming very proficient. Helen regularly plays the organ on a Thursday morning when she opens the church. Hunters Down appreciates Helen’s playing at their service once a month. David Brown has taken on playing for Evensong on the first Sunday of the month.  David also goes in during the week and can be heard playing a wide variety of music.  

Elaine Levitt and I meet to choose hymns quarterly.  Also if you would like a particular piece of music before the service please just give me a CD.

Tots Praise – Elaine Levitt

Tots Praise meets each Monday term time .We have struggled a little with numbers in the autumn term but enjoy the singing ,story and craft in a relaxed way .Thanks to Mary Adlam and David Brown who help to make the sessions work.

Sunday School – Suzanne Froggatt: Sunday school sessions have continued to be offered on the first Sunday of each month to coincide with the Family Communion service at All Saints Hartford. The leaders that have delivered Sunday school sessions throughout 2017 have been Alastair Hill and Suzanne Froggatt.

The children attending Sunday school have been aged 4-13 years, with parents and grandparents of younger children joining some sessions as well.  On average 3 children attend each session. Over the year, 8 different children have attended.  

We continue to use Scripture Union Light Live online Bible based resources to structure the sessions for the group. If you would like to know more about scripture union and its programmes please follow the link below.  

Activities and materials have been used from the Splash (5-8) X stream (8-11) and the grid (11-14) programmes.  At each session the children continue to praise God with Christian songs, saying the Lord’s Prayer, sharing prayers and reading the Bible together. Over the last year we have covered topics including;

         Songs sung in Sunday School

Reach Up – Scripture Union                                Taller than the Mountains – Scripture Union

Wow! – Scripture Union                                       Jesus Stand Among Us

Be Bold Be Strong                                                How Great is Our God – Chris Tomlin

Here I am to worship                                             Let Your Light Shine – Hillsong Kids

I’m Going to Trust in God                                      Lord I Lift your Name on High

Our God is a Great big God                                   Our God is an Awesome God

I would like to thank Alastair Hill for his continuing involvement in Sunday School throughout this year.

Thank you to Revd Geoffrey, Elaine, the Church Wardens and the whole congregation for always welcoming the children’s participation in our church.   I am no longer able to deliver sessions at Sunday school due to my family and work commitments, and wish you all the best in future provision for children and young people at All Saints Hartford.

Hunters Down – Elaine Levitt

A group of us from All Saints take a  Communion Service at Hunters Down on the first Wednesday of the month.(11a.m.) It is much appreciated by all who come and we enjoy it too. Thanks to Helen Dowzall, who plays the keyboard, we can sing familiar hymns with confidence and thanks to Pearl and Claire, who coordinate it all at the Home. We also do a carol service which is popular. We welcome more to come if you can.

Deanery Synod – Elaine Levitt

Huntingdon Deanery Synod met three times in 2017. Firstly at St Barnabas Church in May and the July and November meetings were at All Saints Huntingdon. The Deanery share for 2016 was paid in full with only a small amount from our reserves to achieve this. The resulting rebate has been shared out to the benefices of the Deanery as a thank you for the efforts parishes have made. Changes to the current Deanery plan will take place in the coming months as Fen Drayton becomes part of the Deanery, linking with Fenstanton, the Secondary Schools coordinator resigned but a new appointment was made. . Becky Fanning spoke on the Parish Giving Scheme which was devised in 2008 by Dr John Preston. The July meeting opened with prayers from Rev Andrew Milton, who also spoke briefly about the re-ordering of All Saints Church. This was a busy meeting, with much information about what is going on in the Diocese, as reported at PCC. Full minutes are available if anyone wants to see them. Appointments have been made to ensure a good out come to the Strategy 2025. In November the Directors of Mission and Ministry spoke of what is happening in the Diocese and what is available to parishes .The training booklet that comes to parishes offers a range of different workshops and training that everyone can do. The Diocese is asking all parishes to do a development action plan which is intended to be more action based than previous such motions. It will be built around the 5 levers of change.

Churches Together - Elaine Levitt

A variety of events continue to happen under the auspices of Churches Together. In the summer it supported the Kairos Prison ministry to Littlehay. Work in schools continues well .Prayer spaces are being created and Natasha Clarke is working with Youth ministers from others denominations. “It's your move” was given to Year 6 pupils in the summer. The Beach Party in the Market Square was a success in the summer. The Ladies and Men’s breakfasts continue to be well attended by many of the churches. The Christmas Day lunch was held at All Saints Huntingdon and went well. Rev Nicholas Kearney has moved to Scotland to do a PhD. Rev Philip Shryane is the new Roman Catholic priest at St Michaels’s

Diocesan Synod- Elaine Levitt

Diocesan Synod met in March, June and October. A range of subjects were covered, with presentations about use of churches and church halls, the draft of “A way of Life”, (to be launched at the end of the year), a presentation about chaplaincy work in prisons. Bishop David commissioned Natasha Clarke as Secondary schools coordinator in October. There was an update on Safeguarding and the adoption of five new policies relating to that and continued training for clergy, lay ministers and volunteers. Rev Alex Hughes spoke of the Deanery Action Plans, which Deaneries need to consider and bring to Diocesan Synod.

Achievements and Activities

During the year many social and fund raising events have taken place and been enjoyed by members of the congregation and the wider community. These have included a Pre Lent lunch, Lent lunch, St George’s Day lunch, Harvest lunch, two cream tea afternoons, Open Gardens weekend, Art Exhibition weekend and an Autumn Fayre. Details of our fundraising and charitable giving are detailed in the Financial Report. In addition there are several events which take place on a regular basis throughout the year.

All Saints Hartford Mother’s Union – Elizabeth Cooper

During the year monies have been raised for the local Women’s Refuge and Fusion.  Sadly despite membership being open to men and women, married or single and “come and see” invitations, numbers continued to remain low and decreased as members moved away.   Even changing to day time meetings during the winter months did not increase attendance therefore in January 2018 it was decided to dissolve the branch as it was no longer viable.  The social aspect formerly undertaken by members will not be affected for they will simply continue their work as members of the church.

Monthly Lunches – Elizabeth Cooper

These continue to be very popular, serving an average of 24 people per month with 30 people attending the Christmas lunch.  An interesting mixture of church members and members of the public ensures a very lively atmosphere with nobody feeling they need to leave as soon as they have finished their meal.  We continue to charge £3 per head per lunch and by careful purchasing of provisions we are able to pay £30 per month to church funds for use of the facilities.

Cuppa Club – Elizabeth Cooper

Whilst this is open to anyone who would like to come, it is those who care for partners suffering from dementia who attend these monthly afternoon sessions, and this is probably the most needed facility Hartford Church offers.  It is a small group who meet and the carers are so very grateful for a second day during which they can leave the isolation of their homes knowing that they will be welcomed no matter how disturbed the partner might be. Whilst we never accept responsibility for the cared for during the two hours, we do endeavour to engage their attention and thus allow the carers some time for normality in conversations

Monday Scrabble Group – Helen Dowzall

At 2pm on the second Monday of the month, a small group of people (from Hartford and neighbouring villages) continue to meet in the Church Room to enjoy a friendly game of Scrabble. The numbers are small (but slightly up on last year) but the players rarely miss a session. The afternoons – which include a cuppa and chat - have been enjoyed by those attending. Anyone interested is welcome, no matter what your level of Scrabble expertise. Indeed, we are happy to teach non-players. If you don’t want to play Scrabble, a game of chess can usually be arranged instead. If you fancy neither, you can always join the folk that just meet for a cuppa and a chat - and think about having a game of Scrabble at a later date. Whatever you decide, you will be made most welcome. If you require any more information, ask Helen Dowzall.

Monthly Sunday Lunch at the Barley Mow – Helen Dowzall

Usually held on the second or third Sunday of the month, a group of people (usually about twelve) meet for lunch at the Barley Mow at 1pm. These monthly Sunday lunches have been held now for a good number of years and it is a great opportunity for folk to have the time to get to know each other better. This past year, we have been delighted to see some fresh faces joining us. Lunch and laughter is the order of the day. If you do not have a prior commitment for Sunday lunchtimes, and fancy a meal out, think about coming along and seeing what it is like. The reasonably priced Sunday roasts seem to be particularly popular. There is a sign-up sheet displayed at the back of church in the weeks prior to the meal. If you need any further information, ask Helen Dowzall.

Art Group – Pam Clark

The art group has been running for a number of years and we meet on roughly alternate Fridays throughout the year. Numbers have gone up and down but we have a good core group. Exhibitions take place nearly every year at a time to fit in with other church events and members’ availability. This is a good fundraising activity for the church and generates many visitors who would probably not come into the church otherwise.

The two-hour sessions are enjoyed by all and we welcome new members of any ability. It is a self-help group and we support and encourage each other rather than have an official structure. We are hoping to extend it in to include a group of crafters who would like to have similar informal meetings.

Hartfordian – Peter Levitt

The Harfordian magazine continues to be produced in two versions, print and e-magazine, with 57 print subscribers and

11 e-subscribers. The subscription for 2018/2019 will remain at £6 for 10 issues including a double issue for January/February and again for July/August. Print costs have risen sharply over the last 2 years and this subscription income will, in all probability incur a small deficit and as print costs rise then a further increase next year cannot be ruled out. In previous years I have asked the P.C.C. to give active consideration to seeking advertising and/or sponsorship for the magazine and I repeat that request yet again. A campaign to recruit more subscribers for both print and electronic versions will take place in April this year. I am pleased to say that there has been a continued improvement in the flow of stories and I would like to thank all those who have made contributions to the magazine in 2017 and I hope they will continue to keep writing! It is a matter of regret that there is little or no material about church activities other than that which is generated on rota by the Ministry Team and by the Editor.

I have asked in the past that the PCC as a Committee to consider the purpose and future role of the Parish Magazine and once again I repeat this call. I am willing to continue as Editor if that is the wish of the P.C.C., however I must point out that I am entering the ninth year of my third spell as editor. My first edition was produced on a BBC B computer using a daisy wheel ribbon printer and the master pages had to be guillotined to size before duplication (in black and white on a Roneo machine) because my printer could not handle landscape format. The technology now is newer and full colour printing is possible with all sorts of visual effects that would have been impossible back in the 1980s however the Editor is not newer(!) and some consideration of succession planning would be appropriate.

Financial Review


Structure, governance and management

The method of appointment of PCC members is set out in the Church Representation Rules. At All Saints the membership of the PCC consists of the incumbent, associated clergy, elected and co-opted members drawn from members of the congregation who are on the electoral roll. The full PCC meets six times a year to discuss and make decisions on all matters of general concern and importance to the parish including how church funds are spent. A smaller Standing Committee has now been formed, which meets prior to the PCC meeting, to collate and prepare information for PCC consideration but they have no powers to make decisions unless specifically instructed by the PCC at a prior meeting. To facilitate the worship and outreach activities that take place at All Saints it is important that we maintain the fabric of our church and church room. We are very grateful to the small army of unsung heroes who regularly carry out cleaning and maintenance tasks in and around our church and those who look after the church contents and consumable supplies.

Churchwardens’ Fabric Report for 2017 – Pam Clark and Sue Craven

January - replacement of church room ceiling lights and vestry switch; fire alarms checked

February - fire extinguishers serviced; Health and Safety Inspection carried out

March – patching of plaster in Rector’s vestry and south wall

April – gutters and glass roof cleaned; fire alarm box replaced and fitted; church room redecorated; Quinquennial Inspection; organ tuned; water tap in kitchen replaced

May – vestibule, kitchen and toilets redecorated

June – two bell ropes repaired

July – churchyard gate to Church Lane removed for safety reasons and secured to wall in churchyard; ivy removed, belfry floor and vice stairs swept; carpets in vestibule and church room cleaned; external woodwork of extension oiled, boiler house balustrade and water tank repainted

October – gas boiler serviced

November - churchyard gate to Church Lane replaced

Church Flowers – Pam Clark

The flowers in church are arranged all year round on a rota except during Lent. Special displays at Christmas, Easter and Harvest are part of the cycle when all the arrangers work together. As our numbers decreased a few years ago we are no longer able to offer special flowers for weddings.  We would be very pleased if new people joined the current group and if they felt under-confident they could be with one of the established group until they felt ready to work on their own arrangements. Money is available to pay for flowers but currently none of the ladies accept payment and this saves the Church a considerable amount of cash. Donations are given by some members of the congregation especially for the lilies in memory of loved ones at Easter.

Health and Safety

The annual Health and Safety inspection was carried out in February and regular informal checks carried out throughout the year. As of the end of the year we are without a Health and Safety officer but a potential new one has been identified and his nomination will go to the first PCC meeting of the new year.

Safeguarding – Alastair Hill

The role of Safeguarding Officer was transferred from Pam Clark to Alastair Hill towards the end of 2017. Pam Clark has carried out the role of Safeguarding Officer very ably for 15 years. Pam arranged for the Ely Diocese Safeguarding Team to deliver training to all appropriate church members in January 2018 and many members of other nearby churches took the opportunity to attend. This was a very useful session. Safeguarding is taken very seriously at All Saints Hartford and diocesan policy is followed. Safer Recruiting is being introduced as new volunteers are appointed to roles within the church.  All DBS checks are up-to-date. All key workers with children and vulnerable adults have been checked.

Administrative information

All Saints Church is situated at The Hollow, Hartford, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire PE29 1YF.           

It is part of the Diocese of Ely within the Church of England.

The Rector, the Reverend Geoffrey Boucher, who is responsible for the benefices of All Saints Hartford and St Mary the Virgin Houghton with Wyton, resides at The Rectory, 3 Rectory Lane, Wyton PE28 2AQ.

PCC members who have served at any time during 2017 are listed below.

Ex-Officio Members:-

The Rector - Reverend Geoffrey Boucher

Associate Ministers – Reverend Amanda O’Neill, Reverend Clifford Owen

Licensed Lay Minister – Mrs Elaine Levitt

Churchwardens – Mrs Elizabeth Cooper (until 25th April 2017), Mr Derek Colbert (until 25th April 2017)

                               Mrs Pam Clark (from 25th April 2017), Mrs Sue Craven (from 25th April 2017)

Deanery Synod Representatives – Mrs Elaine Levitt, Mrs Carole Crompton (until 25th April 2017), Mrs Mary Hill (from 25th April 2017)

Elected Members:-

Mrs Sue Craven (until 25th April 2017)

Mrs Jill Crimes (until 25th April 2017)

Mrs Linda Davies

Mrs Helen Dowzall

Mr Nicholas Esders

Mrs Mary Hill (until 25th April 2017)

Mr Gary Moran (until 25th April 2017)

Mrs Val Rule (until 25th April 2017)

Mr Richard Barrett (from 25th April 2017)

Mr Derek Colbert (from 25th April 2017)

Mrs Elizabeth Cooper (from 25th April 2017)

Mrs Carol King (from 25th April 2017)

Mr Peter King (from 25th April 2017)

Co-opted members:-

Mrs Pam Clark (until 25th April 2017)

Mr Victor Phillips (until 25th April 2017)

Mrs Janet Boston (from 25th April 2017)

Mr Paul Fearon (from 20th August 2017)

Appointed Positions:-

Treasurer – Mr Nicholas Esders (until 20th August 2017), Mr Paul Fearon (from 20th August 2017)

PCC Secretary – Mrs Sue Craven (until 25th April 2017), Mrs Carol King (from 25th April 2017)  

Verger – Mrs Elizabeth Cooper (from 25th April 2017)

Fabric Officer – Mr Derek Colbert (from 25th April 2017)                       

Organist and Choirmaster – Mrs Linda Davies

Health and Safety Officer – Mr Gary Moran (until 25th April 2017)

Gift Aid Co-ordinator – Mrs Helen Dowzall

Electoral Roll Officer – Mrs Helen Dowzall

Churches Together Representatives – Mrs Kathy Barrett (until 20th November 2017)

                                                              Mr Richard Barrett (until 20th November 2017)

Safeguarding Officer – Mrs Pam Clark (until 20th November 2017)

                                     Mr Alastair Hill (from 20th November 2017)

Website – Mrs Haleema Hawkins

Flower Arranging Co-ordinator – Mrs Pam Clark

Independent Examiner - Mr Paul Fearon (until 20th August 2017)

                                        Mr David Ebdale (from 20th November 2017)                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

Authorised Worship Leader – Mary Adlam

PCC Report 2017