St Mary’s Church News

Sacred Space

During Lent there will a space set aside for anyone who wishes to meet God in contemplation and quiet. We also have the pictures painted by Christ Westmacott of the Passion which people may find a helpful aid to worship.

Remembering Service

On Sunday 29th October 2023 St Mary’s will hold its annual remembering service when we remembered those whom we love who are no longer with us with a very moving and memorable service.   We place lit candles around the font as names are read out. Using the font in this way completes the Christian circle of life and death. If you would like to add a name please see the list in the church.



Open Afternoon: Sunday 13th August 3-5.30

There will be an Open Afternoon on Sunday 13th August including a talk from Local Expert Roger Davies, a display of ‘Weddings at Linton’ and Tea & Cake.  The afternoon will close with a Thanksgiving Service.


Coronation Morning Worship
There will be a special Morning Worship on Sunday 7th May at 11 am with readings, prayers and hymns to welcome our new King.



The Benefice Bellringers will be ringing to mark the Coronation on Saturday 6th May from 3:30pm for half an hour.  Anyone who would like to have a go at ringing the tolling bell can come along at 4 pm and have a go.  They will receive a signed certificate .



Saturday 3rd December 5-7pm at St. Mary’s Church 

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Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II


We were deeply saddened to learn the news of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

We join with the rest of the nation in mourning the loss of the monarch who served us all with such dignity, warmth and kindness for more than 70 years.

On behalf of St. Mary’s and Linton Village Hall we extend our sympathy and sincere condolences to the Royal family at this sad time.

BrianSquiresBrian’s last day before retirement 2016

Sadly Brian Squires passed away on Monday 7th Feb 2022.  There will be a memorial service in March and a private cremation on the afternoon of Thursday 17th Feb. People are invited to line the route taken by the mourners from the Post Office (Drovers). More details to follow.


Christmas Tree BlessingIMG_1019

Saturday 4th December 202, 4:30pm-5:30pm, there will an informal event to bless the Christmas Tree and celebrate the turning on of the Christmas Lights with hot kinderpunch and gingerbread in the churchyard; supported by Volt. This is a new venture which aims to be predominantly local and social.  The Vicar, Father David, will be blessing the tree and turning on the lights.  The church will be decorated with greenery and candles.  Parking is not available at the Village Hall so please walk or arrange to park on a friend’s drive.  It is not a fund raising event although we hope to cover our costs.


Remembering Service

remembering2021On Sunday 31st October 2021 St Mary’s held its annual remembering service when we remembered those whom we love who are no longer with us with a very moving and memorable service.  The poor weather meant that this year we placed the lit candles around the font which in some ways completed the Christian circle of life and death.


Ring out for Climate!  Saturday 30th October

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We mostly associate church bells with the call to worship, weddings and very special national celebrations such as the millennium or the ending of the 2nd World War. But they also have another historic function: to ring out warnings.

Normally those warnings have been local: to warn of fire, floods or shipwrecks. But they were very much on standby to warn of possible invasions by Hitler, Napoleon or the Spanish Armada. Times of real national crisis.

Here at St Mary’s we believe that today is a time of real national crisis and so on Saturday 30th October we rang our bells to warn the people of Linton of the threat we face.


Harvest Festival Sunday 17th October

Linton Harvest Festival was on Sunday 17th October.  It included the bringing of Harvest Gifts for the Ross Food Bank and the Blessing of the Watkins’ Bench.

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Organ Recital Saturday 17th September

Organ Recital by Tim Ingold, ARCO and Chairman of Gloucestershire Organists Association took place on Saturday 18th September.  We were treated to a varied programme designed to show off this fine instrument and it was an excellent evening. 



Fun Dog Show & Cream Tea

Sunday 29th August 2021, 3pm, Burton Court, Linton

Cream Teas, Doggy bric-a-brac Stall, raffle, Dog show entry fee £1 a class.


Churches Count on Nature Week – June 5th -13th

We’re carrying out a nature survey in the churchyard and we need your help!

Join us to record plants, bugs, birds and animals during the week. Bring a picnic and make an afternoon of it or come as it gets dark and see if you can spot our resident bats. There will be sheets available to record your findings.  On Saturday 12th there will be people around to help you see what to look out for.



2EAD92EF-C765-49EA-A52F-8A5D7B7C324CKen Downham 1931-2020 RIP

Sadly Ken Downham’s funeral was on 22nd January 2021.  Numbers were restricted inside but many people lined the route taken by the mourners from Appledown to the church to show their respects.



A presentation was made to Peggy on Friday 18th December who is retiring from the flower rota after nearly 50 years serving in St Mary’s Linton.



Socially distanced Carol Singing in the Churchyard.


The November church working party will not now take place. However there is a list of jobs which need doing in the church porch if anyone can spare a few hours. Many thanks.



5F4228A1-6209-4249-8FFE-F0986AA9D862New Bench

Many thanks to John, Peggy and Pat for the new bench in the churchyard in memory of their parents, William and Gertrude Watkins.





Thanks to generous fundraising and donations in the village the stones have now been securely mounted onto the nave wall.

They were blessed at the Patronal festival in August 2020.

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Remembering Service

On Sunday 25th October 2020 St Mary’s held its annual remembering service when we remembered those whom we love who are no longer with us with a very moving and memorable service  in the church and then gathered around the ancient yew tree.  Once outside the names were read out, and candles were lit and placed beside the yew tree for those we wish to remember.   Alas with no refreshments this time, but hopefully we can hold a more traditional service in 2021.


Fun Dog Show & Cream Tea

Sunday 12th September 2019, 3pm, Burton Court, Linton

A good crowd turned out to enjoy scones, jam, cream and cakes for tea while watching the fun in the ring!  Almost £350 was raised for St Mary’s wall fund.

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Thanks to all those who kindly made scones and cakes, to Caroline,  for organising the dog show, to Liz and Russell who set up and organise the refreshments, and special thanks to Suzie and Rob for their hospitality.


Remembering Service

On Sunday 29th October St Mary’s held its annual remembering service when we remembered those whom we love who are no longer with us. Having gathered for a chat over tea or coffee and biscuits we experienced a very moving and memorable service.  We then moved into the Churchyard and gathered around the ancient yew tree where the names were read out, and candles were lit and placed inside the yew tree for those we wish to remember

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Ariconium Cup

This year, rather than a tug-of-war, the six churches in the Benefices competed in a fun skittles match.  This took place in the Millennium Hall, Upton Bishop. following a communion service and a bring and share lunch.

The competition was great fun, with team members aged between 3 and 83!  The cup was won by Linton but the biggest prize was the fun and community spirit!

Ariconium cup 2017 - the winning team    Skittling vicar 2017

The winning team                                                                Our skittling vicar

This year’s Harvest Festival service on Sunday 8 October was enjoyed by all and a wonderful amount of contributions to the Ross Community Larder as Harvest gifts were received.  The collection raised over £200 for The Tear Fund.  After the service a lunch of casserole and apple crumble was enjoyed in the village hall.


Saying Farewell to Friends

On Sunday 24th September a large group of villagers gathered in the Churchyard to raise a glass to Peter and Sandy Attenborough who are moving from Linton to their new home in Ledbury.

Over many years they have given a huge amount to the Community – as Churchwardens, members of the PCC, WI committee, village hall committee, community lunches, drivers for LEAP, helping to welcome newcomers to the village, and so many ways, large and small that most people do not even notice.  It will be very difficult to fill the void left.

As they left the morning service they were greeted by their friends and presented with gifts; a pen for Peter crafted by Ben Casson from wood of the Churchyard yew tree; Sandy a tray also made by Ben; and some National garden vouchers.  Jo Davies and a team of helpers had prepared lovely canapes and hung bunting from the trees.

We wish them well in their new home and hope they will make frequent visits.

Welcome party   Thank you

Sandy with tray Peter raises a glass


Birmingham Community Gospel Choir

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On Saturday 20 May St Mary’s Church hosted a concert given by the Birmingham Community Gospel Choir, winners of the BBC Gospel Choir of the year competition in 2015.

Concert goers were welcomed with a glass of wine then enjoyed a joyous and uplifting performance.

During the interval a wide selection of canapés were provided.  Thanks go to Helen for arranging this wonderful evening.

Ariconium Tug of War!

After a hard fought contest this year’s tug-of-war was won by Upton Bishop.

Sale of Organ Pipes from Linton Church

The sale of organ pipes raised an astonishing £871!  Many thanks to Ben for his efforts.

Linton Village fete

We were so lucky on Sunday that the rain held of and we were able to enjoy a very happy and successful event.  A good crowd joined in the many varied events including the dog show, teddy parachutes, tombola and other games.  Teas and burgers were enjoyed, And the wonderful variety of cakes were bought.

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The Human Fruit Machine                                            The Fun Dog Show


Organ pipes for sale

Remembering the anniversary of the Battle of the Somme

Remembering the Somme 1 Remembering the Somme 2

On the morning of July 1st a sizeable group of people gathered together at 7.15am around the war memorial in the churchyard of St Mary’s to remember those who fell in the Battle of the Somme.  Particular mention was made of Harry Palin, son of Edward Palin, who was killed during the battle.  Although his remains were never found, he is remembered on the Palin grave in the Churchyard.

Rupert Brooke’s poem, The Soldier, was read by Ken Gibson and Ben Casson gave some thoughts and background on the battle.  At 7.28 whistles were blown to signify the moment when the troops went over the top.  This was followed by 2 minutes silence.

Thanks go to Roger Davies and Lyn Hodgson for organising this moving tribute.

Carol Service 2016

A large congregation gathered by candlelight on the Sunday before Christmas to sing carols and listen to the traditional Christmas readings. We were also amused by a tale of a village Nativity play as re-imagined by John Pugh featuring familiar local characters!  Afterwards we enjoyed mulled wine and homemade mice pies, and a big thank you goes to the excellent bakers!  The collection raised £315 for Salters Hill Charity.

Crib Service 2016

On Christmas Eve the Church was packed with children and their families to join in the telling of the Christmas story.  Ben and James’ excellent narration was brought to life by the other children who acted as the Holy family, wise men and myriads of shepherds and angels.  Well done to Suzie and her helpers!  The collection raised £138 for the Friends of Ross Hospital.


Harvest Festival 2016

The collection at our Harvest Festival service raised  £250.85 for Tearfund (£299 with Gift Aid).

Family Service 10 April

During a very busy service led by Helen we looked at how we grow in faith as a plant grows in nature.  To have a continuing reminder we all planted sunflower seeds in pots to take home and grow.

During the service we also handed in our jars of change filled.  Our aim had been to raise £250 so as to fund the purchase of a water pump.  To our delight we raised around £650 including gift aid!  This will buy more than TWO PUMPS!

We hope to be able to follow the life of the villages that we help in due course.  See below for details of the appeal.

This Lent, many of us gave up glasses of wine, coffee or chocolate, to mark the 40 days Jesus spent fasting in the desert.  We donated the money we saved to help bring clean water to communities around the world.

Your support will help children like Emeldah, age 10, from Zambia, who spends her days walking miles across hot and dusty plains to fetch filthy water. This water makes her sick and means she often misses school. But in a nearby village lives Ambi, who is also 10. Since WaterAid installed a borehole near her house, she’s drank clean water, attended school and no longer gets sick.  Our church can transform the lives of children like Emeldah, and many others simply by supporting Jars of Change this Lent. Last year churches like yours helped bring safe, clean water to the neighbouring village of Habanji. Children are no longer sick, and girls can go to school instead of collecting water. This is the same wonderful change your congregation can bring to Emeldah’s village.

Looking for Jesus!

On Sunday 13 December lots of children brought their parents and grown up children to Church along with torches and hunted around the Church for shepherds, sheep, angels and anyone who might be heading towards Bethlehem in search of Jesus.  The pictures were then attached to a large poster showing the stable and Nativity scene.

We talked about news – both good and bad and James read the lesson beautifully.  Huge thanks go to Helen and Simon for an uplifting and inspiring service.

Looking for Jesus poster

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Saturday 15th August and October 24th , 10am – Churchyard and Church working parties – many thanks to those who helped to clear parts of the Churchyard and to help clean the Church, not least the Vestry.

Cafe Church and brunch at Upton Bishop

This was well attended and a great success – Much Thank and praise to Olivia and her team who provided an excellent breakfast and a stimulating get together.  This was followed by the annual inter-parish tug-of-war competition which was this year won by The Lea.  Well done to them and all those who took part.

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Linton Village Fete 5 September 2015

Despite a chilly start the weather warmed up and a good crowd assembled in the village hall and Church to enjoy the fete.  Below are a few pictures of the day.

donkeys            teddy parachute

winning scarecrow        human Fruit machine

Family Service 23rd August

The theme this week was The Armour of God and this was ably demonstrated by Hugo who, having been clothed in his armour bravely fought off the arrows representing bad deeds and thoughts.  Well done to Helen for all her hard work in brining this to life!

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Work on St Mary’s

The repairs to the north wall are now complete.

Michael Palin

Michael in the pulpitpresentationOn Thursday 4 June a large audience in St Mary’s Church was entertained by Michael Palin who gave a fascinating talk about his ancestor, The Reverend Edward Palin, who was vicar of Linton from 1865.

At the conclusion he was presented with a volume relating to the history of the Church that had originally been presented to his ancestor.Following the talk the ladies of the village hall provided an excellent supper.



Bridal transport Confetti Bridal partyOn Saturday May 23rd the sun shone brightly for the wedding of Ceri Tupper and John Bailey.  The bride arrived with her bridesmaids by horse drawn dray .


The Church looked lovely thanks to Peggy and the other flower ladies. a truly happy occasion!


 Teddy Target(t) met!

Ellie Targett has met her target of collecting 10,000 teddies by mid-June and they are now on their way to children in Syria through the Syria Relief and Development organisation.                 teddy

Big “Thank yous” go to everyone who helped achieve this.

If anyone wishes to contact her email and if you need any more information then do please get in touch directly with her.
Never underestimate the power of Teddy!!

To give a flavour of Church life at St Mary’s recently there follows an account of some of our services.

Easter 2015 in Linton

The Easter services were well attended and enjoyed by all.  Huge thanks are due to the ladies who decorated the Church with the beautiful and tasteful flowers.

At 6:00am the Easter vigil was celebrated.  The service began in semi darkness including hymns, prayers and a dramatisation of the Easter morning story.  The door then opened revealing the Easter fire burning in the Churchyard from which the Easter candles were lit followed by all the other candles inside the Church.

The service was beautiful and very moving.

Easter Vigil

The congregation then moved into the village hall where champagne, coffee, bacon rolls and bunny shaped crumpets were enjoyed.  Thanks to the village hall team for the breakfast, and Neil for the champagne!

Easter breakfast


St Mary’s in 2014

There follow descriptions of some of the Services held last year – and then some of the other Events, including Fundraising events organised to raise funds to cover the costs of repairing part of the Churchyard Wall which collapsed in the road last Winter.

2014 at St Mary’s

Christmas in Linton

Many thanks go to the Linton Carol singers who gave such pleasure singing around the houses over four nights.  Also thanks to the householders who provided sustenance and contributed so generously to the collection for the Churchyard wall appeal.  Neil was able to announce at the Carol service that the target had been passed!

Over 90 people sang lustily at the Carol Service; many thanks go to those who read and performed.

Even greater numbers came along to enjoy the children performing the Nativity play at the service of the Blessing of the Crib on Christmas Eve,  This was a wonderful event, made even more magical by the ‘reindeer’ (shetland ponies – thanks to Kat).

We must take this opportunity to give grateful thanks to Jo and Julia, not only for another wonderful Crib service, but also for running such a successful Sunday Club over many years.

Families and children: from Sunday Club to Family and Children Services.

This Nativity Play was beautifully produced, a fitting culmination to the work that Jo Davies and Julia Thomas have been doing with young children over recent years.  It seemed to be a natural time to finish Sunday Club and rearrange things so that as many children and families can attend this service together. Trying to commit to two Sundays in a month is nowadays difficult for many busy families! So we would like to thank all the children, families and congregation, past and present, for supporting Sunday Club. We do hope you’ve enjoyed it and have learned a little something along the way! I know we have enjoyed the various activities, games, stories, craft and services which we have shared with you all.

As the Sunday Club slipped away a new style of Family Service emerged.  

The first of these was held on Sunday 28th September when we introduced our new style family service particularly arranged with young children and families in mind.  The first service in September was a real success. Children gathered and read readings, their own prayers were prepared and percussion was played as an enthusiastic addition to the hymns. Neil led a poignant evaluation of the reading which the children could understand. Families chatted afterwards over coffee, whilst the children enjoyed the biscuits! A welcoming and relaxed feeling… please do join us next time.  We were pleased to welcome many new faces to the church including a large number of children  A huge “thank you” goes to Suzie and Neil for arranging such an enjoyable service.

The next such service is a Christingle one on 25 January at 11:15 when everyone will be made welcome.

Remembrance Sunday

The Annual Service of Remembrance was held on 9th November when we gathered round the War Memorial to commemorate those who had fallen.  Representatives of village societies laid memorial crosses and Bob Tuttiett played The Last Post.  [For details of other events in the village marking the centenary of the outbreak of the 1st World War, please see lower on this scroll**where a report will appear].

A Service of Remembering

On 26th October following the practice in recent years we arranged a service inviting people to come and remember those whom they had loved but are no longer with us.  After a simple service we gathered around the ancient Yew and we were invited to light a tea light in memory of someone and lay it inside the tree.  A period of silent reflection, a chant, a prayer and then either quietly home or a time to share a cup of tea with others.

Harvest Festival

On Sunday 12 October many villagers gathered in the Church to celebrate Harvest Festival. The congregation brought gifts of food resulting in a substantial collection of items for the Ross Larder. After the service every one gathered for a jolly lunch in the village hall. Thanks to everyone who came and particularly to those who helped make it such a happy occasion.

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Mothering Sunday     

In addition to those annual traditional services which mark the Church’s year there were some special services during the year, including:         

Teddy Bear Service 24 August

Pet Service on 27 July

Sea Sunday 25 May

Following the collapse of part of the Churchyard Wall falling into the road in the winter a programme of fundraising events was arranged and the target of £7,187 was reached as the Carol singers sang their way around the village.  Everyone involved is very appreciative of the generous support for these various events,

   550         24 May                Richard Baker’s talk about Fracking.

1,000          20/2 June         A donation from the Alma Festival Committee for helping to run the Tea Tent

920         11/3 July              Exhibition & Sale of Paintings by Christian  Westmacott .

310        9 August                Reminiscences: a programme of song and poems from WW1

692         Village Fête         Church share of proceeds of the Village Fête

820         26 September     The Dalesmen Male Voice Choir

735         29 September      donations

500         September             donation from the ASlma Festival Committee

613         24 October          Archie Miles’ talk on ‘The Oak Tree’ and supper

165           summer and autumn produce

625          28 November     Traditional quiz and pudding Evening with Mick and Gloria Pay

422.50    15-18 December Carol singing round the village

With a further £735 coming from donations and £207.50 from Gift Aid the

target of £7,187 was passed and a total of £7,560 reached, a great tribute to the generosity of the whole community.

Thanks to everyone who has supported the appeal to raise money for the rebuilding

of the Churchyard wall.