Garden of Remembrance – Public Notice of Memorial Plaques Extension – St Nicholas

St Nicholas’ Church – Garden of Remembrance – Pubic Notice & proposed changes

This is a beautiful quiet space by the church. Ashes are placed here and loved ones are remembered often with flowers. The existing 1990s wall is in a state of disrepair as identified in both the 2014 and 2019 Quinquennials Inspections, and its unattractive looks detract from the garden. In addition, the demand for plaques from church members and the wider community mean that space for these will run out in the next year to two. 

We wish to repair the wall and to make improvements to provide additional space for plaques at the same time as this provides the most cost-effective approach for stonework. 

Below you can find details of our proposed improvements for additional plaques and the ideas we have considered in making our decision on the best way forward. The process to get consent from the Diocese to do the repairs is straight forward. However, for the improvements we need to obtain a Faculty which involves giving public notice of our plans and allowing time for people to object.    You can find the Public Notice here

The improvements we propose making involve creating space for plaques on the walls of the 1990s office extension to the Church.  This will involve the addition of a new stone facing on the West print room wall for additional space, and also a 2metre extension beside the existing plaque space on the North office wall.  For those interested in the details, these are the links for Remembrance Panel Plans West and North  

We have discussed widely with the DCC and those who do interment of ashes and the affixing of plaques. Originally the architect suggested we build on two piers to the existing walls in the remembrance garden; this would provide very few additional plaque spaces and would create a damp and dark space in all the corners. We also thought of building up. The existing walls are made of poor quality, crumbly stone and the advice is not to build on something that has proved to be non-durable and weather sensitive. The architect, Stefan Skanski’s original idea was to add two piers and also a new wall. The new wall would be costly and also may well go over interred ashes. The idea is not a popular one and would change the space in the churchyard. New foundations would need to be dug and possibly disturb burials of ashes and it would divide some old plaques from new ones. No one was in favour.

We then considered adding stone to the west wall of the print room (part of the 1990s church extension). This may need foundations but is still cheaper than building a new wall. It is much less intrusive. The stone should blend with that of the print room. There are no burials to worry about and it does not intrude into the churchyard. Daffodils and snowdrops grow in the surrounding space. This keeps the shape of the remembrance garden intact and does not intrude on the churchyard. It is likely to provide 10-20 years’ space for plaques. The same parties have been consulted within the church and are happy with this plan. The print room will benefit insulation wise from another layer of stone on the wall.

Vicky Platt – Church Warden

February 2024

Our Parish now Supports Azalea

Azalea means beautiful and dignified in ancient Greek and its mission is to empower and facilitate sustainable transformation in the lives of the men, women and neighbourhoods impacted by sex trafficking through several different projects. Sex trafficking is when an individual is coerced, forced, or manipulated into providing sexual access or services to a ‘punter’ often through threats of, or acts of, violence from a perpetrator.  So what work does Azalea do?

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Ecochurch: Taking Action for Future Generations

The Church of England wants churches to take a stand on the ecological challenges we face. The diocese is encouraging all of us to better support our church as stewards of God’s creation.

We can do this by participating in Ecochurch, which is an award scheme that recognises the work done by churches to care for the Earth. Churches complete a survey covering a wide range of questions such as how well they are caring for the wildlife in their churchyards or how environmentally friendly their church buildings are. Depending on the answers given by each church, they can work towards an award, and All Saints Church and St. Mary’s Churches already have Bronze Awards. We are not doing this just as a box-ticking exercise to get an award. The award scheme is a means of motivating us as a church to bring about ecological change in our daily lives.

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Cornelia’s gives £6000 to charities

CORNELIA’S is delighted to announce that it is able to distribute £6,000 to the
following charities. This is a fantastic amount which will hopefully be well received by
the charities. A huge thank you to all customers and volunteers.
• £500 Citizen’s Advice Bureau (Harpenden)
• £1,000 The 267 Project
• £500 JUMP
• £500 STEP
• £1,000 Open Door (St Albans)
• £500 Orphans Know More
• £500 Rennie Grove Hospice
• £1,000 MIND in Mid Herts
• £500 Mercy Ships

Reverend Canon Dr Dennis Stamps – Rector

Dennis was born near Chicago in the USA. However he regards California as his childhood home. He with his wife Helen moved to the UK in 1984 in order to do PhD studies in theology at the University of Durham. Dennis trained for ministry at Westcott House Cambridge and following his curacy was involved in theological education at the Queen’s Foundation teaching New Testament and serving as Dean and Principal. He came to St Albans diocese in 2002 as Ministry Development Officer and Residentiary Canon at the Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Alban. [Nationally on behalf of the Church of England he is a Senior Inspector of theological colleges and courses and serves on several Ministry Division committees. He remains involved with the St Albans Centre for Christian Studies.] Dennis has particular commitment to Ecumenism, adult theological education, and research and writing on the New Testament. Leisure includes the seaside, walking, a good film and listening to music (mostly classical).

St. Nicholas Pastoral Visiting Team

The Pastoral Visiting Team

The purpose of this team is to offer welcome, friendship and compassion as an active part of the ministry of everyone in the church.

We visit those who are new to the church family, also those who are housebound, in residential care or hospital temporarily or long-term.

We meet regularly together with the Rector to plan our visits, to pray and to encourage each other.

This is a quiet and confidential ministry.

If you know of someone who would appreciate a visit, please contact the team via the Rector or the parish office

Cornelias Café

Cornelia’s Coffee Shop, in the grounds of St. Nicholas’ church, is open Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays 10am till noon, and Wednesdays 3-4pm. School holiday opening hours are Wednesdays and Saturdays 10am till noon. We serve delicious Fairtrade coffee, teas, cold drinks and snacks with a very friendly welcome and in a beautiful garden setting. All profits go to charitable causes.

St. Nicholas Hall Hire

Large hall with kitchen and two smaller rooms available for hire for functions including children’s parties, dance classes, dinners, club meetings and craft fairs.

Large Hall – 47’ x 23’

The large hall has a hard polished floor, with a directly accessible kitchen. Kitchen facilities include gas cooker, sink and preparation areas. Crockery and cutlery for 100 is available at an additional charge. The hall is accessible to wheelchair users.

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