As part of the Greater Churches Conference 2009, we will be
visiting two of our member churches – Bath Abbey and St Mary
Redcliffe Bristol. Both are steeped in history and we very much
look forward to seeing them. You will find a brief introduction to
each church below:
Plans are well under way for our
2009 Conference which is taking
place at The Ammerdown Centre,
Radstock near Bath from Tuesday
13th to Thursday 15th October
The conference entitled ‘Celebrating
the Heritage – Living the Faith’ will look
at our heritage buildings – are they
St Mary Redcliffe
serving us or are we serving them?
How do we re-order our buildings but
look after the heritage that we have?
the time and plans are now being developed to
continue this journey with the first major
Our two main speakers will be Revd
The Abbey Church of Saint Peter and Saint
programme of changes since the 1870’s.
Andrew Mottram previously of
Paul, Bath (or Bath Abbey as it is more
These changes aim to make the building fit for
Ecclesiastical Property Solutions and
commonly known) has been described as
use in the 21st Century whilst retaining and
Mr John Yates, Inspector of Historic
the last great medieval church in England.
enhancing its beauty.
Buildings for English Heritage. We will
visit our member churches, Bath Abbey
and St Mary Redcliffe Bristol, and look
St Mary Redcliffe
forward to an ‘enchanting’ after dinner
talk from Mark Townsend. It promises
St Mary Redcliffe is a masterpiece of
to be a good conference and further
Gothic architecture, with some parts of the
information and booking forms will be
church dating to the beginning of the 12th
sent out in July.
century. It is the tallest building in the city of
Bristol, with the spire rising to 292ft, and it is
I have just received news of the
the second tallest Anglican parish church in
appointment of the Revd Canon
the country after St. James Church Louth.
Jeremy Fletcher, currently Residentiary
Within its walls you will find a superb collection
Canon and Precentor at York Minster
of carved bosses, elegant eighteenth century
as the new vicar at Beverley Minster.
ironwork, beautiful stained glass and a world
We wish him well in his new
famous organ (currently under restoration).
appointment and hopefully look
Since at least Roman times there has been a
Queen Elizabeth 1 once referred to it as “the
forward to meeting him at the
place of worship on the site of the current
fairest, goodliest and most famous parish
building. A Roman Temple and a Saxon Abbey
church in England”.
– which hosted the crowning of Edgar as king
Please keep me posted on personnel
of England in 973 with a service that forms the The church is sited on the red cliffs above the
changes within your own churches so
basis of the present-day British coronation floating harbour and was originally at the very
that I can keep the address list up to
ceremony – were followed by a massive centre of shipping and industry which is the
Norman cathedral priory. By the late 1400’s key to its history. The merchants of the Port of
I look forward to meeting many of you
the cathedral was in ruins and a dream inspired Bristol began and ended their voyages at the
at the conference.
Oliver King to build the present beautiful abbey shrine of Our Lady of Redcliffe and to them,
with its unique West Front and spectacular especially William Canynges and his grandson
vaulted ceiling. Since then the Abbey has in the 14th and 15th centuries, we owe the
evolved over the years to meet the needs of body of the Church as it is today.
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