Reflections Blog

This is some blog description about this site

PAX May 2021

Pax                           MAY  2021

Price:  40p.

The Parish Magazine for the Benefice of St. Ippolyts with Great and Little Wymondley


The Reverend Ginni Dear, The Vicarage, Stevenage Road, St. Ippolyts SG4 7PE                   01462-237032

Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


St. Ippolyts

Michael Hooper, Hillrise, Stevenage Road, St. Ippolyts SG4 7PE                                           01462-457350

Jane Veasey, Gosmore Cross, Newlands Lane, Gosmore SG4 9BD                                        01462-434254

Great Wymondley

Cherry Carter, 2 Church Green, Great Wymondley SG4 7HA                                               01438-724919

Little Wymondley

Mike Allardyce, 81 Whitney Drive, Stevenage SG1 4BL                                                        07967-831968

David Palmer, 198 Cleveland Way, Great Ashby, SG1 6BY                                                   01438-367912

Visit our website -




My late father (who was a much loved parish priest) often described himself jokingly as 'Mrs Lanham's husband'.  When she was in her prime, my mother was on a committee responsible for Vicarages in the Gloucester Diocese;  her job  was to give a woman's advice on the design of kitchens so that they could be

as user friendly as possible.  Since I am married to a leading member of Clifton Parish Council I am inclined

to give myself the same title as Father did, but in the interests of domestic harmony I shall refrain from doing

so.  Perhaps Rumpole of the Vestry would be more appropriate and I would wear that with pride - though whether Judy is 'She who must be obeyed' is open to debate, and I do not drink vast quantities of Pomeroy's Plonk.

This came to me as I shared the grief of the nation over the death of Philip Duke of Edinburgh, because this could be applied to him.  He was a formidable person in his own right, enormously respected, enormously gifted, deeply religious and with an ability to relate to ordinary people.  Above all, he was the power behind

Her Majesty, her rock.  Always there, seldom obtrusive, enabling her to be arguably the mightiest and most loved monarch this country has ever had.

What has struck me is that the universal sense of grief that has enfolded this nation is not just that we have

lost a unique figure in our history, though that is bad enough.  It is the sense of loss that we have felt for Her Majesty.  We have been grieving for her as well as for him.  The vast majority of us have lost someone very

near and dear to us, so we can relate to what she feels as she faces life without a husband to whom she was married for a staggering 74 years and to whom she was devoted.  There has been a kind of closing ranks around her, the spirit of which is best summed up in the heartfelt message by the Prime Minister of Australia.  ‘She has been there for us over such a long time;  let us be there now for you, Your Majesty, and allow us to send our love to you.’  Nothing could be added to that;  he might be speaking for us all.

And what of his epitaph?  He probably wouldn't want one because it would seem sentimental.  Rummaging through the hundreds of newspaper cuttings which, as an historian I keep, I found a quotation by Jacob Rudin that seems to sum up what needs to be said at a time of national mourning over such a mighty man.  ‘When we are dead and people weep for us and grieve, let it because we touched their lives with beauty and simplicity.  Let it not be said that life was good to us but rather that we were good to life.’  The Duke enriched our lives and the life of the nation just by being himself.  As many have said he could have risen to the very highest ranks of the Royal Navy.  Instead he became husband to a queen and devoted himself to her life and to the life of this nation. We are indeed the richer for his being among us and poorer for his passing.  May he rest in peace and rise in glory.

    Warmest good wishes, Paul




Service times may vary and may be in any of our three churches so please check the time and venue carefully.


8.00am.          Holy Communion (BCP)                                St. Ippolyts Church

9.15am.          Parish Praise                                                    Great Wymondley Village Hall


9.15am.          Holy Communion CW)                                   St. Ippolyts Church


9.15am.          Holy Communion (CW)                                 St. Mary’s Church, Little Wymondley

6.30pm.          Evensong                                                         St. Ippolyts Church


9.15am.          Holy Communion (CW)                                 St. Ippolyts Church


9.15am           .           Holy Communion (CW)                                 St. Ippolyts Church

BCP = Book of Common Prayer, traditional language

CW = Common Worship, contemporary language

The money in the collection plate on 5th Sundays will be given alternately to the Wymondleys as they would usually have hosted this service.

                                                                                                                                         Ginni Dear






Services will resume at St. Mary’s on Sunday 16th May at 9.15am.  We will then have a service of Holy Communion every third Sunday of the month at 9.15am.

On Thursday 13th May the church will be open from 10.00am. when we will give it a much needed Spring Clean.  As you will appreciate, it has been shut for many weeks, and the dust has built up.  If anyone can spare an hour and come and polish a pew, that would be a great help, many hands make light work, as the saying goes.  Cleaning materials will be on hand and social distancing will be managed.  Thank you, it will be lovely

to open the doors again and see people coming in.


Please note that our annual meeting due to take place on Sunday 16th May following the 9.15am. service has been cancelled.


There are never two gardening years alike.  This time last year we were topping up our sun tans, going straight from Winter to Summer, this year the big jumpers are still in use and we have had some hefty night frosts to deal with.  A few weeks ago we were wading through mud and saturated ground which has now dried out and is like concrete.  I need a chisel instead of a fork, and we could do with some rain.  I have spent some time having to water containers;  us gardeners are never happy. 

But Spring is a special season, full of hope and expectations.  I get a lot of pleasure growing things from seed, seeing them germinate and the green shoots coming through, then it’s time to prick them out, try to find space to put them all in.  I end up balancing pots and trays everywhere.

Our poor Magnolia has taken a bashing from the frost, and I think I have lost all but two Rosemary plants, they really didn’t like that cold week in March.  As I have been weeding through the beds I have found some hidden treasures, some snakehead Fritillaria, which I had forgotten, they look so fragile and beautiful, and I can see Fox Tail Lilies beginning to show through.  The Camellias were fabulous last year, but are going to be poor this;  I can see one that is flowering, it is in a sheltered spot near a horse trough which we planted up with some aquatic plants and can boast one goldfish, Michael (after Michael Fish, weatherman).

It is this time of the year when I open the garden shed.  I can’t believe I left it in such an untidy state last Autumn, I’m sure we have shed gremlins who go in over Winter and turn everything about.  I manage to get the mower out, dust it down and always delighted when it fires up for the first time, the same with the bar-b-q.  By the time I have cleaned it all, carried it into place and assembled it again, the sun has gone in, but I shall be ready, tongs in hand, at the first chance now.  Let’s hope we have a lovely Summer. 

                                                                                                                                    Rosemary Stratton





‘Summer is Icumin’ is a song written in the Wessex dialect of Middle English and this manuscript was made between 1261 and 1264.  It is the oldest musical composition featuring six-part polyphony.  


We know it as:

     ‘Summer is a-coming in 

      Loudly sing, Cuckoo! 

      Groweth seed and bloweth mead 

      And springs the wood anew, sing Cuckoo!’  

We used to sing this when I was at school.  I often sing it to myself at this time of year when Spring is edging towards summer but sadly these days in Great Wymondley we do not hear cuckoos at all.  It must be at least

15 years since I heard one here.  Due I think to the loss of habitat and trees in the fields around and changes in our weather patterns.  We sometimes used to see one on the top of the church tower.  They continually called

so that it was almost annoying!  I would give anything though to be able to hear them here now.  Still Summer

is getting nearer and in spite of the frosty nights lately, Nature is working its magic and the continuity of life unrolls.  A solace in these strange times. 


210501 Great Wymondley IMG 5229 3


The Easter Vigil service was held here in the churchyard on Easter Saturday and a good number of people took part bringing chairs and sitting round in a circle outside the church porch with a small bonfire in the centre to ‘Lighten our Darkness’ and remind us of Christ’s Resurrection.  The fire kept us warm, it lit the Paschal candle and we were even able to sing as it was Easter and outside

                                                                                                                                    Cherry Carter




I'm sure that our thoughts and prayers are especially with Her Majesty the Queen at this time and we shall always remember the deeply moving funeral service of the Duke of Edinburgh which was so powerful in its simplicity.  While the number in St. George’s Chapel was 30 in accordance with the Covid guidelines the military pageantry outside had 730 taking part which is still etched in our memories.  We are so thankful for

the long and happy marriage of the Queen and Prince Philip, the longest serving Consort in our history, and

we praise God for their Christian faith.  When the Queen reached her 90th Birthday a book called 'The Servant Queen' was published.  At the beginning of the book there was a message from her which included these words:

"In 1952 I asked the people of the Commonwealth and Empire to pray for me as I prepared to dedicate myself to their service at my Coronation.  I have been - and remain - very grateful to you for your prayers and to God for His steadfast love.  I have indeed seen His faithfulness".  The Queen has now reached her 95th year and we thank God for her and as we continue to pray for her, the longest serving Monarch of our land.  We also remember her beloved husband's constant and unwavering loyalty and devotion through over 73 years of marriage.

As May approaches so do the blossom and the bluebells and as the world around us is growing more beautiful by the day so things are getting better for us to begin to enjoy all the 'normal' things which were out of reach for so long.  The Chapel is open for services with the correct guidelines being observed but the zoom facilities are still being used as some are still enjoying services on zoom.

As soon as we can use the Hall again for activities we will let everyone know.  Actually, the first time the Chapel Hall will be in use will be for the local elections on Thursday 6th May.

On Tuesday the ‘First Tuesday Coffee and Chat’ will be on zoom on 4th May from 10.30am. with Will and Lynne Andrews.  The link is

On Tuesday evening we pray together but from our homes, so join us from yours as we pray for our Community, our Country, the NHS, the Government and our Queen.  We remember all those who are suffering from illness or bereavement both here and abroad.  We are so grateful for the vaccine and the way things are improving by the day.

The Community Bible Study is on zoom on Wednesday 12th and 26th May from 2.20pm.  A warm welcome

to all.  The link is

Oasis 'The Time of Refreshment' is on Wednesday 19th May at 2.30pm. on the same link when the speaker will be Bessie Januarius.  So join us if you can!

Bible Studies are also held on Wednesdays (weekly) at 7.30pm. and (fortnightly) on Friday at 11.00am. on

the Church Service zoom link.

If you want to be at the Chapel for the Service please book on the Church email address - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or the Church phone 07531-081621 when the usual guidelines will apply.  If you are joining us from your home on zoom dial in at 10.30am. for a 10.45am. start on 01314-601196 or 02030-512874.  Please use the link https/ or download the zoom app. and join using

ID 8675752648.  Any problems phone 07531-081621.

Sundays in May:

2nd       Hannah Dengate

9th        Will Andrews

16th      Rev. Ray Thomas

23rd      Margaret Edmonds

30th      Kieran Murphy

“We can surely be grateful that, two thousand years after the birth of Jesus, so many of us are able to draw inspiration from his life and message, and to find in Him a source of strength and courage.”

             Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second

        Marjorie McCarley  (01438-727050)





The next Bible Study Group meetings will take place on Wednesdays 12th and 26th May.  We will meet on

Zoom at 2.20pm. with a cup of tea and we begin our Studies at 2.40pm.  We will be continuing our study of

The Acts of the Apostles.  If you would like to join us please telephone Margaret Edmonds (01462-452340)

or Clare Larsen (01462-453541) for further information.

                                                                                                                                          Clare Larsen



The next Parish Council meeting, which is also the Annual Meeting of the Council, is due to take place on

Monday 17th May at 7.30pm.  Residents should please check the Council's website and Facebook page @WymondleyParish Council as this date may be subject

to change if the government does not extend the current deadline that enables Parish Councils to meet remotely.


The Parish Council is to hold its first Scarecrow Festival from 21st to 28th August.  We are hoping this will

be a Parish wide community event, attracting participants of all ages, with residents able to make their own scarecrow and then follow a walking trail(s) to view the scarecrows displayed in front gardens and in the Community Garden in Graveley Road, Great Wymondley.  So why not join in and start designing your scarecrow - any theme, big or small.  You can find lots of ideas on the internet, including from scarecrow festivals held in other parishes.  The event is intended to be COVID-19 secure - depending on the restrictions

(if any) in place at the time, residents will be able to make their scarecrow at home and then walk around the Parish with members of their own households (and/or friends and family, if permitted) independently at a time of their choosing.  For further information, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Sharon Long

Clerk to Wymondley Parish Council

Phone:  07733-853263

E-mail:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.






The May election for councillors was uncontested.  North Ward:  Rebecca Elliott and South Ward:  Peter Hobson, Robert Moore and Pamela Skeggs.

There are two vacancies in both wards.  If you would like to know more about being a councillor, please look

on the website or notice boards and if you are interested in being co-opted, please contact the clerk.

Thank you to Sulu Pike, Trevor Smith, Paul Thaper and Barbara Thomas for your voluntary work, you will be missed and we wish you all the best for the future.

The Annual Parish Council Meeting will take place on Monday 10th May at 7.30pm.  A copy of the Agenda

will be displayed in the notice boards and on website  There is always an Agenda item for Public Participation where residents can ask questions and raise issues.  Please contact Susan Mears on 01462-421409 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you would like to join this meeting.

                                                                                                                                            Pam Skeggs



At the 23rd AGM on Tuesday 23rd March Frank Harding, Phil Byford, Michal Fisher and Carl Watson were elected as Trustees, and Rebecca Elliott was co-opted.  Barbara Thomas was appointed subject to confirmation by St. Ippolyts PCC and Pamela Skeggs subject to confirmation by St. Ippolyts Parish Council.

In the year ended 31st December 2020, the trust received rental income as well as grants and donations.  Total income generated amounted to £16,961 (2019:  £23,341) with outgoings totalling £14,670 (2019:  £26,975) giving a surplus of £2,291 (2019:  deficit of £3,634) which has been added to reserves to fund on-going maintenance.  It was agreed there would not be an increase in hire charges again this year and to continue with 2019 rates.  This will be reviewed at the January 2022 Management meeting.

In accordance with the government’s roadmap Step 2 we were able to welcome back some of our users on Monday 12thApril for permitted activities and no earlier than Monday 17th May for additional activities but we recognise that required limitations may mean not all users will be able to return.

On polling day, Thursday 6th May the polling stations will be open from 7.00am. until 10.00pm.

By following the mantra of hands, face, space, we can all keep ourselves and others safe.

For enquiries, please contact Sam Kelly, Bookings Secretary, on 01462-423291 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

or visit website

Dairy dates:

Management Meetings             Wednesdays 30th June and 29th September 2021

Christmas Fair and Raffle         Saturday 27th November 2021 from 2.00pm. to 4.30pm.

AGM                                       Tuesday 22nd March 2022 at 6.00pm.

                                                                                                                                          Pam Skeggs



The St. Ippolyts and Gosmore Women’s Institute is closing.  Their first meeting was held at the Parish Hall

on 18th June 1941.

                                                                                                                                           Pam Skeggs





Service in St. Ippolyts Church and burial in Hitchin Cemetery

5th January:      Jean Molly Grimmer


Service in St. Mary’s Church Little Wymondley and burial in the churchyard

16th March:      Angela Christina Watts



Liz, John, Tim, David and Chris would like to thank the many kind people who sent cards and letters to us following Alan’s death.  We received over ninety of these, all with wonderful tributes.

In addition there were many donations to the memorial fund in Alan’s memory for UNICEF and these have taken the total to over £4000 - awesome!

Thank you all so much from the family.

                                                                                                                                    Liz Cowlishaw


100 CLUB

The winners for APRIL were:

No. 69             Joy Cooper                              £20

No. 55             Jane White                               £15

No. 80             Elizabeth Cowlishaw                £10

                                                                                                                                          Shelagh Cox



Material for the JUNE issue of Pax should reach Clare Larsen, 24 Ninesprings Way, Hitchin SG4 9NN

(tel. 01462-453541 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) by Saturday 15th May, please.  Or given to Rosemary

Stratton by Wednesday 12th May.



On line services a message from Revd Ginni