So far this century, half the sixteen churches in this deanery have had significant money spent on them (or on their neighbouring halls) to enhance their availability as a major community resource.
At our neighbouring church of St Hugh (in the West Marsh area of town) some of the funding has also come in to support a development worker. She phoned last week because she has new funding to work with a group of those with learning difficulties. I’d noticed in the local paper that the centre there was going to be open for an initial couple of hours in the week where this group was going to run a café.
Her phone call was about a local history project in which she is involving them. She wanted to bring them to look round the churchyard at St Michael’s on Thursday. Sadly this was a day when I was away all day, but I met up with her on Wednesday to show her round in advance.
We only have one gravestone which dates from the eighteenth century, but among the half dozen or so of the oldest gravestones we looked at this two hundred year old face (from 1806) which is slowly beginning to disappear. I’d never dwelt on it before, but I went back to the grave yesterday to enjoy it again (and take this photograph) and I hope they did too.