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Branch Correspondents Page

Our first event this year was a service of Lenten Devotions held on March 8th at St Saviours Church, St Albans in the Lady Chapel. As last year’s service was so successful we decided to hold it again. The service was led by our branch chaplain Revd Canon Peter Palmer. It was a service of reflections using hymns as prayers with a reflection on the gospel parable, the prodigal son, written by Delia Smith and read by Canon Peter who thought that Delia had done as good a job as he could. After the service members again had time to chat over refreshments provided by Nonita Palmer.
At our AGM this year, one of our members Janet Lindsay announced she was celebrating 25 years as a verger at St Andrews Church in Bedford in March. So on March 7th the church had a celebration for this. Another member Gareth Burrows who has taken over from Janet as verger (Janet has become Verger Emeritus) invited branch members to the church service and celebration. 3 branch members plus our area leader Mike Golby and his wife were able to attend. Mike brought with him the Millennium Verge for Janet to process in with at the service. This was all without Janet’s knowledge and so she was really surprised and overwhelmed when people turned up to robe and process in with her. After the service there were speeches by Janet’s first and current Vicars and the curate read out messages from past curates and other well-wishers who could not be at the celebration including an Ode to Janet as a Verger from one of them. Janet was presented by the church with an engraved Silver Salver and flowers. There was also a special cake to cut for all those present to partake.
Our next full branch event was Corporate Communion. This was also held at St Saviours Church St Albans in the Lady Chapel on Monday 12th April. We had around 25 people which included members and guests. All members were invited to robe and so we had an impressive procession at the beginning of the service. The procession was lead in this year by me as one of the younger members of the Branch using the Verge given to Frank Lane on his retirement from St Albans Cathedral. At the service Frank’s wife Lynda was inducted as an Associate Member. After the service we had refreshments provided by my mum and Nonita Palmer.  The date of this service was also my Dad’s birthday so, being forewarned, Nonita provided a cake with a candle as a surprise and everyone had a slice.
Our next event will be the annual Alban Supper held in June at All Saints Church Leighton Buzzard. This year we shall have a talk about the stained glass windows of the church as there are some fine examples.

Mark Russell Branch Correspondent


AGM 2010

We had our AGM at the second attempt. Snow stopped play for the first attempt.

The meeting was well attended with 19 members and 5 of their guests.

We did all the usual things, approving the minutes of last years meeting and electing the new officers for the next year. There were no changes from the previous year.

In the any other business section, I made an appeal for information concerning what was going on in the members churches. What might seem normal and usual for you is news and interesting to the rest of us. Some of this information might go into the new magazine or onto the website.

There were updates to the branch programme.

Lynda Lane has decided to become an associate member after several years of coming to the events with Frank.

1st March 2010 Janet Lindsay will be 25 years as a virger at St Andrews Bedford. We wished her well.

Peter Hudson said that The Diocesan year book was out of date again with the wrong entries despite the committee trying to change them.

The meeting concluding with Flap jacks, chocolate crunch and fruit juice.

Pre Christmas Social Dec 2009

For the third year running we had our pre Christmas Social in the Training Restaurant of West Herts College in Watford, helping to support the training and development of 16-18 year olds embarking on a career in Catering.

The Food was again very good. For a faddy eater I found plenty to eat and enjoy. The company was also superb, as was the service. The College really did work hard this year, to make us welcome. Pre Christmas Social A  Dinner at the College

The silly hats worn by the staff and the Virgers helped for a party atmosphere.