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St Giles Church, Oxford

Parish News

October 2017 Free


PARISH CONTACTS
Vicar: Canon Andrew Bunch, 01865 510460
The Vicarage, Church Walk, Oxford OX2 6LY vicar@churchwalk.eclipse.co.uk
Associate Priest: Revd Tom Albinson 01865 515409 or 07426 948251
tomalbinson@gmail.com
Lay Minister: David Longrigg, 23 Norham Rd, Oxford OX2 6SF 01865 557879
Benefice Manager: Henrietta Mountain-Ritter 01865 512319
10 Woodstock Road, Oxford OX2 6HT beneficemanager@st-giles-church.org
Churchwardens
Maureen Chu 01865 726011 maureenchu1@gmail.com
Joanne Russell 01865 760788 joannerussell1@me.com
Acting Treasurer: Rod Nixon treasurer@st-giles-church.org
Organist: Andrew Patterson andrew.patterson@finemusic.co.uk
Choir Director: Nicholas Prozzillo choir@st-giles-church.org
PCC Secretary: Sarah-Jane White sarah-jane.white@ihs.ox.ac.uk
Captain of the Bells: John Pusey johnguypusey@hotmail.com
Church Flowers: Mary Whitlock stgilesflowers@gmail.com
Benefice Secretary: Anne Dutton secretary@st-giles-church.org
Twitter @StGilesOxford
Instagram stgileschurch
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ChurchStGilesOxford
Website www.st-giles-church.org
________________________________________________________________
WEEKLY SERVICES AT ST GILES
Sunday: 8:00 am Holy Communion (BCP)
10:30 am Holy Communion
6:30 pm Evensong (BCP)
Monday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Tuesday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Wednesday: 12:30 pm Eucharist
5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Thursday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Friday: 1:15 pm Taiz Worship
5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Saturday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer

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The newsletter is free, but if you wish to contribute towards production
costs this would be much appreciated. Please put your donation in the
wall safe, and mark your envelope Parish News. Items for inclusion in
the November magazine should be sent to secretary@st-giles-
church.org by Monday 23rd October.

Contents October 2017


Jazz at St Giles October 2017 Page 3
Reports on St Giles Fair Maureen Chu/Jane Finnerty Page 4
Oxford Open Doors Margaret Williamson Page 7
Bellringing News John Pusey Page 7
A Passage to Palestine, 1946 Pat Lawrence Page 9
Food Parcels sent from Perc to Fallowfield John Pusey Page 11
200/100/50 and 25 Years Ago Page 15
Flowers in Church Mary Whitlock Page 16
The Men Behind the Names (4) Alison Bickmore Page 17
From St Giles Registers Page 20
Building Community Page 21
Well-known Hymns (6) To be a Pilgrim Page 23
Saint of the Month: St Edward the Confessor Page 23
Dates for your Diary October 2017 Page 24

JAZZ AT ST GILES OCTOBER 2017


th
Saturday 14 October at 7:30 pm: David Gordon Trio Speaks Latin
There would be a revolution if we didnt invite back JASGs favourite
Jazz pianist and supreme composer David Gordon and his Trio for an
evening of Latin rhythms from their top-selling CD. 15/12/5
Saturday 28th October at 7:30 pm: Ben Meets Benny
Jazz violin virtuoso Ben Holder pays tribute to the clarinet playing of
The King of Swing, Benny Goodman. 15/12/5
Tickets are available at the door or online from www.jazzatstgiles.com
Proceeds go to War Child, Save the Children, and Project 900.

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REPORTS ON ST GILES FAIR 2017

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Many thanks to all participants and helpers during this years Fair.

1. Thanks to the flower team


The traditional decorating of the church was carried out on Saturday
2nd September. This was overseen by Mary Whitlock, our new Flower
Power, and helped by Clare, Julia, David, Jane and Helen. Special
thanks to Somerville College, Daisies Flower Shop, and Margaret
Pinsent for donations of flowers.
2. Thanks to the WI
Jane Finnerty arranged for collaboration with various WI groups to
raise money for St Giles Church, Denman College; and to provide a
welcome, and refreshments, for fairgoers to the church. Heartfelt
thanks to Jane and the many WI ladies who gave their time, cakes and
good humour.
3. Thanks to St Giles stewards and caterers
Thank you to all the people who helped to keep the church open, and
provided food for sale: Jane, Sarah-Jane, Margaret W, Penny, Melanie,
Kathy, Margaret P, Rod, Ali, Alison, Martin, Mounette, Suzie, Jim, Sue,
David, Akhino, Clare - plus anyone else I may have omitted. And not to
forget Stella, whose jam and marmalade were well received, as usual.
4. Thanks to the bellringers
It was lovely to have the Abingdon bellringing team in - as well as the
Tower Ring; we were delighted with their handbell ringing in the
Chancel.
5. Clergy
Thank you to the clergy for the Midday Eucharist Services and to
Wycliffe Hall Ordinand Ben Baker for the Commentary of the Lords
Prayer he arranged round the church.
6. 2017 Fair Facts and Figures
Footfall: 961
Banked: 1079.01

Please see spreadsheet below for full figures and comparisons with
previous years.
Maureen Chu

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Year Sept Teas etc. Wall Safe Churn TOTALS VISITORS Other Jam BANKING Weather conditions noted at the time
Books/cards/
Donations
candles
2017 4-5 882.42 38.33 75.26 996.01 961 83 1079.01 Rather unsettled, damp
Collaboration with WI + gazebo in churchyard; major revenue increase but possibly reduced footfall in church WI jams+chutneys on sale
Total teas revenue 1,729.35 + 35.5 on POS machine, split 50/50
WI visitors on Monday supported colleagues in some numbers.
2016 5-6 583.73 36.75 62.46 682.94 c1172 168.00 850.94 Humid; M=overcast, T=sunny
2015 7-8 597.95 87.06 92.91 777.92 c1050 CDs 60.00 241.00 1078.92 M=sunny; T= overcast
2014 8-9 476.40 93.36 119.43 689.19 c1290 inc. c80 St Asaph's clergy 198.00 887.19 Warm and sunny
2013 9-10 537.73 112.24 102.17 752.14 1022 200.00 952.14 Wet and overcast
2012 3-4 456.62 206.34 224.76 720.82 1179 267.46 1155.18 Warm and sunny
2011 5-6 442.77 37.71 159.24 639.72 986 **57.00 273.00 969.72 Tues: torrential rain
632.76 24.89 135.52 793.17 1370 *553.35 186.00 ***1532.52 Sunny intervals

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2010 6-7
2009 7-8 692.56 27.95 181.81 902.32 1000 79.00 1001.52 Dry and warm
2008 8-9 594.08 12.40 107.15 713.63 c731 713.63 Steady rain
2007 3-4 553.36 15.55 138.69 707.60 1202 65.45 Prints 773.05 Nice weather
2006 4-5 467.67 50.54 209.88 728.09 1213 582.00 Pig Roast (break even)
2005 5-6 375.00 49.77 206.59 631.36 813 **Bells Fund * white rhino
2004 6-7 423.69 35.16 101.10 559.95 757 ***(979 for general funds)
2003 8-9 655
2002 9-10 777
2001 3-4 842
2000 4-5 1095
1999 6-7 977
1998 7-8 1262
1997 8-9 1092
S T GILES buzzed with a lively atmosphere during the two days of the
Fair, with plenty of people in church enjoying the peace, flowers,
cream scones and hot drinks. Poor weather didnt deter the visitors, and
this year we did particularly well with fundraising and an extra gazebo on
the church green supported by the Oxfordshire Federation of Womens
Institutes. Helpers from St Giles and the WI served up a mountain of
donated cakes and filled rolls. Stella Boswells preserves proved
extremely popular, with one WI member buying nine pots of Stellas
jams and jellies. Next year we hope to have a tea tent to support our
refreshment serving in the church. Many thanks to all who generously
donated refreshments, and their time; and to the amazing team at St
Giles who looked after the church and visitors. The money raised was
up on previous years and the WIs Denman College in Marcham was also
a grateful beneficiary of St Giless success. Jane Finnerty
__________________________________________________________
OXFORD OPEN DOORS, 9th 10th SEPTEMBER

I N addition to the above activities, we had managed a listing in in the


Open Doors Weekend as it coincided with the Ride and Stride, we
would be open anyway on the Saturday. To this we added 12 noon to
4 pm on Sunday and reckoned that we welcomed a further 70 or so
visitors, some of whom enjoyed Andrew Pattersons lunchtime recital
while others came for a short tour. Margaret Williamson
__________________________________________________________
BELLRINGING NEWS

A LMOST every year recently, we have managed to arrange some


handbell ringing while the church is open to the public during St
Giles Fair. This year, none of our own ringers were available to
organise anything, but finally I approached to arrange some of handbell
ringing while the church is open to the public during St Giles Fair. This
year, none of our own ringers were available to organise anything, but
finally I approached Susan Read from Abingdon - and she outdid
anything which we have done before. She regularly arranges outings
for young ringers gathered from several different towers, and on this
occasion, though with only about 10 days notice, she managed to
attract five from Abingdon, two from Headington, and one from
Bloxham, who spent most of the afternoon of the Tuesday of the Fair

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at St Giles, together with some adult ringers. After a spell of ringing
the tower bells, they practised various forms of handbell ringing down-
stairs in the church - ringing tunes as well as changes - and also enjoyed
wonderful teas provided by the ladies of the WI. Finally, four of the
more experienced ringers successfully rang a 39-minute quarter peal
on handbells. We hope they will do something similar for us again,

perhaps next year or the year after.


We were sad to say goodbye to Paulina Fishman, our most
recent recruit, who had her viva at the end of a one-year Masters
course on 12th September, and flew home to Australia the same
evening. She only started to learn to ring in the spring, but since then
she had been the most regular attender of our recent learners, and had
also managed to ring at about a dozen other towers. She seems very
determined to continue to ring now that she is back at home, and
fortunately there are several towers with sets of English-style bells not
far from where she lives in Melbourne.
Paulinas departure underlines the continuing difficulty we have
in finding enough ringers. Even if you cant consider learning to ring
yourself, can you think of a friend or relative or colleague who you
could encourage to visit the tower to find out about bellringing? At this
time of year, especially, there should be plenty of new arrivals in
Oxford who arent yet fully committed, and might be ready to take on a
new activity. John Pusey

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THE WAY THINGS WERE (2): A PASSAGE TO PALESTINE

I N MARCH 1946, at the age of 24, I went to Palestine on a two-year


probationary contract as a member of the Colonial Nursing Service
(CNS) to work in civilian hospitals run by the government. After nearly
six years of Second World War austerity, the idea of a complete change
of lifestyle in the warmth and sunshine of the Middle East was exciting.
When I finished my training, I had applied to join the Army
Nursing Service (the QAs) but had been turned down because I wore
glasses, so I was pleased this wasnt a stumbling block for the CNS. The
ophthalmic consultant whom I had been seeing for several years at St
Marys Hospital in Paddington arranged for me to have Haptic contact
lenses fitted when I went for a pre-travel check-up. They were still
comparatively new, and I felt quite privileged when he explained that
they had been used by
the RAF during the
War. The lenses were
very different from the
present day ones,
much larger and
thicker, and they had
to be floated in with
saline. I found them
difficult to insert, and
uncomfortable over
longish periods, and
eventually reverted to glasses.
As I was going by sea, luggage (divided into Cabin, Hold, and
Not Wanted on Voyage) could be unlimited, not that I had a lot to take:
pay for nurses wasnt generous, and rationing hadnt allowed for much
except essentials. I was given a special issue of clothing coupons and a
grant towards the cost of uniform. Friends and family rallied round and
produced extra coupons and handed over useful bits and pieces. My
mother donated two of her pre-War linen dresses, which were
extremely useful and looked like new, much nicer than Utility clothes,
which were of reasonable quality but rather uninteresting and skimpy.
(The New Look with its full, long skirts was still to come.) For off-duty
clothing, the list I was sent included now long-vanished items such as

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afternoon dresses and washing frocks. The uniform suggestions
included white lisle stockings and spare heels for white duty shoes. It
was stressed that I should take as much as possible with me from
England, but it didnt take long after I arrived in Palestine to find that
there was a wide range of goods easily available - even silk stockings,
and before long, nylons - and no more expensive than at home.
I sailed from Swansea in a smallish cargo boat, the Empire
Confidence. The Empire ships were captured German merchant ships
and this one was being handed over to the Egyptian Navy when it
reached Port Said, so there were Egyptian officers on board in addition
to the British crew. My father had travelled with me by train from
Lowestoft and saw me safely on board, reassured that it was seaworthy
by the air of spit and polish and the Red Ensign at the stern! There
were only 12 passengers, so we soon got to know each other. There
was another nursing sister, Joyce, from Belfast, who was going to teach
midwifery; several missionaries; one or two business people; a
government doctor returning from leave; and a young RAF widow,
Margaret, from Cheshire, who was going as secretary to Bishop
MacInnes. I was sharing a four-berth cabin (bunk beds and no en suite
in those days) with Joyce, Margaret, and an older woman who was
introduced to us as Lady Reading. I have no recollection of any
conversations with her, apart from us all being asked on the first
evening if we would be quiet when we came to bed as she retired early
and was a light sleeper. She seemed to spend most of her time writing
letters. I didnt realise then that she was a prominent Zionist and
Chairman of the British section of the Jewish Agency. Nor did I realise
anything of the complexities that would arise as the British Mandate
came to an end in 1948.
It was exciting to see Gibraltar and to sail along the North
African coast, and thence to Malta with the magnificent harbour at
Valletta. When we docked in Beirut, where we were to disembark, we
had a final night on board so we had a chance to look around the city.
It still had a very French Colonial atmosphere, and the cafs and shops
were fascinating. The sheer abundance and variety of everything on
the street stalls, and brilliant colour everywhere, made a lasting
impression on me: it was my first overseas journey and it all seemed
rather unreal.

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From Beirut, our party went south by road and over the Lebanese
border to Haifa, where we stayed for a night at the Hotel Windsor. It
was the first time I had slept under a mosquito net. Then by train to
Jerusalem, the old-hands pointing out places of interest as we went
along. When the luggage came off the train, I was amazed to see my
heavy leather trunk hooked up to the waist-belt of an Arab porter, who
also had a large suitcase hoisted onto each shoulder. Our party split up
outside the station: Joyce and I were taken to the Sisters House near
the Government Hospital in the Russian compound. It was dark when
we arrived, and I was surprised and delighted next morning to see
wallflowers in the garden. We were given a few days to get
acclimatised and to meet various senior people in the Medical
Department. Margaret joined Joyce and me, and we were taken round
the Old City by kindly expatriate residents (including Rev Ernest
Sergeant father of broadcaster John Sergeant) who thoroughly
enjoyed showing us the main sights on the pilgrim circuit: the Garden
of Gethsemane, the Mount of Olives, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre
and the Via Dolorosa in the Old City. We went as far as Ein Karim, the
lovely hilly area reputed to be the birthplace of John the Baptist, still
peaceful and unspoilt. Our guides took us into places not normally
open to the public, entered through a massive gate in a high wall and
into a courtyard garden with trees and a pool, and a Retreat House
where we were warmly welcomed. Then Joyce stayed in Jerusalem to
teach midwives, Margaret stayed in the hostel at St Georges
Cathedral, and I was posted to an Infectious Diseases Hospital at Beit
Safafa, off the Bethlehem road. Pat Lawrence
__________________________________________________________
FOOD PARCELS SENT FROM PERC (GASP, QUBEC, CANADA) TO
HOLY INNOCENTS, FALLOWFIELD, MANCHESTER, IN THE 1940s

F OR at least 70 years I have retained a clear memory that, while I


was a child, food parcels used to arrive at my home in Manchester,
intended for distribution within my fathers parish of Holy Innocents,
Fallowfield - and I have always had a distinct recollection that the
senders address, written on the outside of the parcels, was Perc,
Gasp, Qubec. This arrangement probably began during the War but
continued afterwards as food rationing remained in force in Britain for
several more years. Although I think I was most interested in the high-

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value foreign stamps on these parcels, I can also remember that the
contents included very large tins of ham, corned beef, and marmalade;
and fruit cake rich enough to have survived for the several weeks
required for the parcels to be carried by sea from Qubec to
Manchester.
As a child, aged only seven in 1947, I was just a witness of the
parcels being unpacked on our kitchen table, and those more
responsibly involved at both ends must have been at least a generation
older, so it has seemed likely that by now most or all of them would
have passed away, or at least would have forgotten these events.
Thinking about my fathers life, after his death in 1997, reminded
me of these parcels, and I began to wonder just who had sent them,
and how Fallowfield had been chosen as a destination. My family had
moved back south to Worcestershire in 1951, and we had had very
little contact with Fallowfield after that date, but I sent enquiries both
to Fallowfield and to Perc, and also to other organisations both in
England and in Canada where relevant memories or written records
might have survived. I didnt discover anything, so I sent further
enquiries on a couple of later occasions when I thought of other places
where I might ask, but I was still unsuccessful in obtaining any confir-
mation that such parcels had been sent.
A friend invited me to make a visit to Toronto at the beginning of
September 2017, and
this prompted me to
make one more attempt
to answer my questions
about these parcels, and
also to think about
visiting Perc to say
thank you for them. So I
sent a message to the
Anglican Bishop of
Qubec, who passed it
With Rev Cynthia Patterson and the Acting Mayor
on to Rev Cynthia
Patterson, based in the larger town of Gasp, near Perc. She replied
enthusiastically, helped with arrangements for transport and
accommodation for me in Gasp and Perc, and spent two half-days

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showing me round. I also corresponded with Mrs Hilary Jones,
currently Churchwarden at Holy Innocents, Fallowfield, who sent me a
greetings card and a letter for me to take to Perc to express thanks on
behalf of her congregation.
In Perc, Cynthia Patterson took me to meet the Acting Mayor. I
offered thanks to him as a representative of the whole community, and
we had pictures taken standing outside the post office - still the same
building which had been there in the 1940s, and therefore presumably
the place where the food parcels had been posted.
Cynthia Patterson also introduced me to Mrs Ethel Cass, an
Anglican long-term resident in Perc, now aged almost 102. Mrs Cass
told us that she remembered knitting socks and scarves and sending
them to England in the 1940s, but that she had not been involved with
food parcels. However,
when we asked her again,
she said that she did
remember that other
members of the Anglican
congregation in Perc had
been preparing food
parcels, and also that she
thought they had been in
contact with the Canadian
With Mrs Ethel Cass Red Cross, who had pro-
bably been involved at least in giving advice about this activity. I also
met Mrs Casss daughter, Patsy, who didnt remember seeing parcels
being packed, but did recall having been left alone at home as a child
when her mother went out to take part in this kind of war work.
Ethel Cass showed us a copy of a booklet published in the 1960s
to celebrate the centenary of St Pauls Anglican Church in Perc, which
included biographical notes on several of the Anglican families (mostly
originating from Jersey, and with French surnames). Three women
who Mrs Cass could remember, with the surnames Renouf, Tardif, and
Valpy, were all identified in the booklet as having been active in the
congregations Womens Auxiliary, and so they were therefore
probably leading members of the group who had prepared the food
parcels. I was also told that another surviving resident in Perc,

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although she wasnt an Anglican and didnt speak much English,
remembered that the women in the Anglican congregation had been
sending parcels to England.
These recollections strongly support the idea that, although the
majority in Perc and Gasp were French-speakers, it was specifically
members of the English-speaking Anglican congregation who had sent
the parcels which we received in Fallowfield. However, we didnt trace
any record or recollection in Perc of precisely where the parcels had
been sent to, and so it still seems to be the case that my personal
memories are the only remaining evidence of a specific link between
Perc and Fallowfield. Although I had addressed enquiries to the Red
Cross both in Britain and in Canada, and they had not been able to
trace any records which confirm this, it now seems likely, on the basis
of what Mrs Cass told us, that it was the Red Cross who created the link
between these two localities. What I was told in Perc also gave me
the impression that the scale of activity there meant that they had
probably been sending parcels to a number of other destinations in
England as well as to Fallowfield.
Cynthia Patterson also took me to see the Anglican church in
Perc, and after searching in the graveyard, we found the graves of all
of the three women who seem to have been most directly involved in
preparing the parcels.
Grave of Laura Valpy, Perc
Keeping the names
Renouf, Tardif, and
Valpy in mind while
we searched for the
graves began to make
me think that the
name Valpy in
particular was
somehow familiar.
Maybe this
experience had
revived a genuine
memory of the senders name which had been written on the parcels,
which I must have seen when I was a child, though I dont think I could
have recalled the name without having been prompted in this way.

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Cynthia Patterson said she would pass on the news of my visit to
the local press, and she also arranged for me to be interviewed by the
local English-speaking radio section of the Canadian Broadcasting
Corporation while I stopped overnight in Qubec City on my way back
to Toronto. Perhaps this will prompt someone else in Qubec to come
forward with relevant memories. John Pusey
__________________________________________________________
200 Years Ago Oct 1817: Diary of Rev John Natt DD
12th Oct: Mr Matthews took ye Prayers in ye Afternoon at St Giles and I
preached for ye 3rd time there my Sermon No 237. A moderate
Congregation in ye Afternoon. Mr Wilkins teeth had fallen out during
my absence, which prevented his playing. This afternoon the Clerk
went up to ye Gallery to sing. 26th Oct: Ye morning Mr Matthews took
prayers and I preached a Sermon which I wrote last week with
assistance from an old Sermon of mine. Administered the Sacrament
assisted by Johnson of Magdalen. 48 communicants in all. Collected
2 9s 9d there were 48 pieces of silver besides nine pennyworth of
halfpence. One Gownsman, Mr Matthews friend, staid at ye
Sacrament. But neither of ye Church Wardens, nor either of ye
Warburtons, nor any of ye Hitchingses. Nor Mrs Hill. Talmage, Varney
and Methodist Chillingworth were there.

100 Years Ago St Giles Parish Magazine, October 1917


The Harvest Festival and the Autumn Missionary Effort: We have all been
learning to take a much keener interest in the harvest, owing to the
anxieties about our food supplies, and our thanksgivings will be more
intelligent and sincere than in former years, and will include the remem-
brance of the perils which beset the ships which ring our food from
abroad. As usual, the collections at the Harvest Festival will be given to
Foreign Missions; and it will be the first day of the week chosen for the
Autumn Missionary Effort in Oxford. This Effort is the right and natural
sequel of the National Mission of last year. For we cannot come to a
true sense of our Christian obligations without recognising the duty of
the Evangelization of the world, a duty which is one of the primary
purposes of the Churchs existence. A United Service of Intercession for
Foreign Missions is to be held in the Cathedral on Oct 30, at 8, at which
the Bishop of Willesden will be the preacher. It will be full moon, and it

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is hoped that there will be a large attendance from all parishes in Oxford.

50 Years Ago St Giles Parish Magazine, October 1967


Vicars Notes: I wrote in August that the kitchen in the parish room was
being redecorated by voluntary workers. It is now finished except
perhaps for details too small for all but the expert eye. Our do-it-
yourself-ers warned me to wait and see before I commented. I have
waited and seen and can now go into raptures about our smart, clean,
bright and efficient kitchen. Large sums of money saved, much hard
work given to St Giles, some, I repeat, some, fun had in the process.
Now to work in finding use for it all. Plots are being hatched as I write
this for some sort of parish supper to test the strength of the gas cookers
and the capacity of the sink! But more of this. Meanwhile, heart-felt
thanks and congratulations to everyone who planned and manned this
exercise.

25 Years Ago St Giles Parish Magazine, October 1992


The Church Care Group and the PCC have been considering alterations to
the Lady Chapel for over two years, and have come up with certain
suggestions for its re-ordering, but their proposals have twice been
turned down by the Oxford Diocesan Advisory Committee. The majority
opinion is in favour of the floor of the Lady Chapel being levelled to the
same height as the first step leading into it from the main body of the
church. The raised floors at the East end are artificial, in the sense that
they were constructed in the last 50 years or so to support the organ in
its old position before it was moved to the back of the church. There is
also a certain amount of damp rot in the floor, which must be dealt with
sooner or later. The crucial fact, perhaps, is what is the Lady Chapel for.
It should be a place of peace and quiet, for reflection and prayer. It
should also be structured for good liturgical functions, such as Mattins
and Evensong.
___________________________________________________________

If you would like to make a donation towards flowers,


or would like to arrange for flowers to be placed in
church to commemorate a particular date or
anniversary, please contact Mary Whitlock, or speak to
the Churchwardens or a member of the clergy.

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THE MEN BEHIND THE NAMES (4)

T HE men remembered in this article are linked by something which


we today think of as history but which was, at the time of the
Great War, an important feature of life the British Empire. The
Empire on which the sun never set, was symbolised for many of us by
the Mercator world map in our school atlases, showing half the world
in red. It is an outdated concept now, even a politically incorrect one,
but in 1914 it was of great significance.
The emigration of thousands of people from Britain to the
colonies and dominions, which had increased rapidly with Victorian
industrialisation, continued long after 1900. People of all walks of life -
administrators to run things; soldiers to defend things; businessmen;
miners; farmers; younger sons searching for adventure, fame and
fortune; young families looking for better lives - all looking for new
opportunities: all continuing to look back to Britain as the mother
country and home.
This is exemplified by three of the St Giles men Christopher
Choldcroft, Reginald Hodgson and Francis Slay who had all left
England before 1914, emigrating to different parts of the Empire.
When Great Britain declared war on 4th August 1914, the countries of
the Empire were automatically at war too and men volunteered to
fight, joining locally raised forces to fight in France or on other battle
fronts. In the case of Reginald Hodgson in Vancouver, although he
volunteered in Canada he chose to join a British regiment the Royal
Field Artillery.
CHRISTOPHER CHOLDCROFT was born in March 1888. He was the
third son in Christopher James and Laura
Choldcrofts large family living and
working at 11 Woodstock Road, opposite
St Giles Church (now part of Browns
Restaurant). Mr Choldcroft was a
hairdresser and his business was
advertised regularly in the pages of the
Parish magazine. At the time of the 1911
Census three sons had left home, leaving
three daughters helping their father, and
the two youngest children still at school.

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Christopher, the third of the sons to leave home by 1911,
emigrated to Canada in 1913. He sailed from Liverpool on the White
Star Dominion Line Laurentic in June 1913, bound for Quebec. In
October 1914 he volunteered to serve in the Canadian Over-Seas
Expeditionary Force. His Attestation papers, dated 28th October 1914,
gave his trade as Bootmaker and stated that he had previously been a
member of the Naval Volunteer Reserve. He joined the Central Ontario
Regiment.
The first Canadian Force volunteers arrived in England in
November 1914, training on Salisbury Plain before crossing to fight in
France and Flanders from February 1915. Christopher was serving as a
Private in the 3rd Battalion of the Canadian Infantry in early 1916. The
War Diary of the 3rd Battalion for 19th February 1916 reports that
Private Choldcroft and two sergeants were killed by a shell at the
transport lines at Dramoutre. The page for the day records NCOs and
man buried at LOCRE. Loker Churchyard is 11.5 km south of Ypres
town centre. Christopher was 27. His name is also on the Great War
memorial from the now-demolished Methodist Chapel in Walton Street
but held in the Wesley Memorial Church in New Inn Hall Street.
One of Christophers older brothers, Cecil, served in Ox & Bucks
Light Infantry from 1915 to 1917 when he was wounded, but he
survived the war and died aged 83 in 1964. Norman, the youngest in
the family, and too young for war service, became a chiropodist and
worked at 11 Woodstock Road into the 1930s. Their father had con-
tinued the family hairdressing business in the Woodstock Road until
1928/9 and died in 1943 in Oxford aged 83.
REGINALD DRURY HODGSON was born in London in 1879, the
youngest of the three sons of H J Hodgson,
Master of the Supreme Court of Judicature
who died in 1890, and his wife, Amy
Josephine, ne Drury. Reginald was
educated at Radley College and University
College, Oxford, where he read classics. He
represented Oxford at boxing and fencing
in 1900 and took his finals in 1902. He
became an underwriter at Lloyds and was
called to the Bar in 1906 as a member of

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the Inner Temple.
At the time of the 1901 Census, while he was still up at Oxford,
he and his widowed mother were living as boarders in Ebury Street in
Westminster. In 1911 they were living in Earls Court Square,
Kensington and his occupation was Barrister-at-Law. Later that year he
left England for British Columbia, where he became a member of the
Bar Association in Vancouver and practised as a barrister.
On the outbreak of war in 1914 Reginald enlisted in Vancouver
and his Attestation papers, dated September 1914, gave his mother as
next of kin and as living at 26 Banbury Road, Oxford. He identified
himself as single and a member of the Church of England.
He was gazetted 2nd Lieut, Royal Field Artillery in October 1914,
promoted Lieutenant in December and then Captain in early 1916. He
served in Egypt, Serbia and Salonika and then was attached to the 82 nd
Brigade in France in November 1917. He was killed near Arras on the
first day of the German spring offensive on the Somme on 21 st March
1918 - his body was never found. He is commemorated on the
Pozires Memorial. He was 38.
Reginalds connections with St Giles are not very clear but it is
likely that his mother, who was living in Oxford at various addresses
near the church during and immediately after the war, was a member
of the congregation. On 29th March 1918, there was a private death
notice in The Times in which Mrs Hodgsons address was given as 6
Keble Road, and the Probate records of Reginalds will in June 1918
also give this address. Number 6 Keble Road had been part of the
Engineering Science department of the university in 1914-15, although
Mrs Hodgson seems to have moved there from 26 Banbury Road in
1915 or 1916. She is listed in Kellys Directories as living there between
1916 and 1925. She died in London, aged 75 in 1925.
FRANCIS JOHN WILLIAM SLAY was born in 1892. At the time of the
1911 Census Francis was 18 and living with his parents, Francis and
Selina Slay, and a younger brother, at 10 Wellington Square. His father
was a university lodging-house keeper (and continued to be one until
1935). Francis himself is described as a boot and shoemakers
apprentice: he had previously attended the Central Boys School in
Gloucester Green.

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Francis emigrated to Canada, probably in 1913. The passenger list for
the Allen Line ship Tunisian, which sailed
from Liverpool to St Johns, New Brunswick
on 26th November that year, includes F X
Slay, aged 21, salesman. This is almost
certainly Francis on his subsequent
enlistment papers, his religious
denomination is given as RC: the X on the
Passenger listings suggest that he had
adopted the name Xavier on conversion to
Roman Catholicism before he left England.
Little is known about his life in Canada
before he enlisted. He joined up in July 1916, volunteering (Canada did
not bring in conscription until 1917) in Edmonton in what was then
Western Canada, giving his trade/calling as Student at St Johns
College, Edmonton. He joined the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary
Force, serving in 1st Canadian Mounted Rifles (Saskatchewan Regiment)
as a Private.
Francis was killed on 29th September 1918 and his death was
reported in the Oxford Times on 26th October, at St Olle, near Cambrai.
He was 26. He probably fought in the Battle of the Canal du Nord (27 th
Sept-1st Oct 1918), a precursor to the full penetration of the
Hindenburg Line and the end of the War. Francis is buried in the
Raillencourt Communal Cemetery Extension near Cambrai one of the
smaller Commonwealth War Grave Cemeteries. The Bourlon Wood
Memorial, also near Cambrai, commemorates the participation of
Canadian Forces in those final months of the War.
__________________________________________________________

FROM ST GILES PARISH REGISTERS


Baptism
10th Sept 2017 Alexander William Lowndes Jones
Weddings
16th Sept 2017 Andrew Williams and Annamaria Mead-Robson
23rd Sept 2017 Samuel Pegg and Joanna Norton
Interment of Ashes
3rd Sept 2017 Dennis Shaw

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Dear Friends
This coming term there will be a series of different resources offered
within the Benefice on the subject of Building Community.
Thursday Lunchtime Talks in St Giles at 12:30 pm. The talks start on
Thursday 12th October. We will be looking at how communities are
formed, maintained or destroyed in a variety of different circum-
stances. This promises to be a fascinating series giving us insights from
present (Grenfell tower) and past (Indian partition) and local situations.
Prayer Stations. The Prayer Stations will go up just before the start of
the Thursday lunchtime talks. If you are unlikely to be able to visit St
Giles whilst these are on display, please visit the St Giles website.
Bible Studies. On Sunday 15th October, the first of the weekly Bible
Studies on Building Community will be sent out to members of the
Benefice who are on our mailing list. The theme of each week follows
the same themes that will be on display in the Prayer Stations. If you
would like to join a group for this series of Bible Studies, please let one
of the clergy know and we will put together some study groups with a
nominated leader.
Daily Thoughts. A daily thought associated with the theme of the
weeks Bible Study will be sent out to members of the Benefice on the
mailing list. On some days, links will be provided to short videos which
are related to the thought of the day.
Sermons in November. On the Sundays in November, the theme of
the sermons at the 10:30 am services in the Benefice will be Building
Community. Each week there will be a different preacher coming from
a different kind of community. This series of sermons starts off with a
representative of a religious communities. On Remembrance Sunday,
the themed sermon at St Giles will be at Evensong.
The concept of community is important, not only in our secular society,
and perhaps particularly relevant in the UK at this time, but also in the
entire idea of what it is to be members of the church. We hope that
what is being offered will be thought-provoking and will enhance our
understanding of the importance of each of us being part of something
bigger, more significant and life-giving, namely a community.
Yours,
Andrew, Georgie and Tom.

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WELL-KNOWN HYMNS (6) TO BE A PILGRIM

T O Be a Pilgrim (also commonly known as He who would Valiant


be) is the only hymn John Bunyan (1628-1688) is credited with
writing, and is indelibly associated with him. It first appeared in Part 2
of The Pilgrim's Progress, written in 1684, and recalls Hebrews 11:13:
...and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
The words were modified extensively by Percy Dearmer for the 1906
English Hymnal. At the same time it was given a new tune by British
composer Ralph Vaughan Williams using the traditional Sussex melody
Monk's Gate. The hymn has also been sung to the melody Moab (John
Roberts, 1870) and St Dunstans (Charles W Douglas, 1917). For a time,
Bunyans original version was not commonly sung in churches, perhaps
because of the references to hobgoblin and foul fiend, but recent
hymn books have tended to return to the original. (Source: Wikipedia)
__________________________________________________________
EDWARD THE CONFESSOR, KING OF ENGLAND (c 1002-5th JAN 1066)

E DWARD was born in Islip and tradition holds that he was baptised
there. (A chapel associated with him existed north of the present
church of St Nicholas the Confessor but it was damaged during the Civil
War and was demolished in the 18th century.) Edward was the son of
King thelred II (The Unready) and his Norman wife Emma. Living in
exile in Normandy during the Danish supremacy, he was invited back to
England in 1042 to become king, and was welcomed as a descendant of
the old royal line. However, his reign was a balancing act between the
influences of stronger characters at his court or overseas, sustained by
Edwards diplomacy and determination. Edwards reputation for
sanctity was built on his personal, rather than his political, qualities. He
was concerned to maintain peace and justice in his realm, to avoid
foreign wars, and to put his faith into practice. He was generous to the
poor, hospitable to strangers, but no mere pietist. Having vowed as a
young man to go on pilgrimage to Rome should his family fortunes ever
be restored, he later felt it irresponsible to leave his kingdom, and was
permitted instead to found or endow a monastery dedicated to St
Peter. Edward chose the abbey on Thorney Island, by the River
Thames, thus beginning the royal patronage of Westminster Abbey. He
died in 1066 and his remains were translated to the Abbey on 13 th
October 1162. (Source: Exciting Holiness, 1997)

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DATES FOR YOUR DIARY
Sunday 1st October TRINITY 16
3:00 pm Animal Service
4:30 pm Chorister Open Afternoon
7:00 pm Priest and Pints at The Anchor
Sunday 8th October TRINITY 17
10:30 am Choral Matins at St Giles
10:30 am Confirmation Service at St Margarets
6:30 pm Choral Evensong
Thurs 12th October St Wilfrid of Ripon, Bishop, 709
12:30 pm The Dynamics and Psychology of Building
Community
Sat 14th October
7:30 pm David Gordon Speaks Latin Concert
Sunday 15th October TRINITY 18
Thurs 19th October Henry Martyn, Translator, Missionary, 1812
12:30 pm LArche Community Showing the Way
Sunday 22nd October TRINITY 19
Thurs 26th October St Alfred the Great, King, Scholar, 899
12:30 pm Forming an Ethos of Community in a College
Sat 28th October Ss Simon and Jude, Apostles
7:30 pm Ben Meets Benny Concert
Sunday 29th October THE LAST SUNDAY AFTER TRINITY
__________________________________________________________
Sunday Readings at 10:30 am Holy Communion
1st Oct: Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-end; Ps 25:1-8; Phil 2:1-13; Matt 21:23-32
8th Oct: Isaiah 5:1-7; Ps 80:9-17; Philippians 3:4b-14; Matt 21:33-end
15th Oct: Isaiah 25:1-9; Ps 23; Philippians 4:1-9; Matthew 22:1-14
22nd Oct: Isaiah 45:1-7; Ps 96:1-9; 1 Thess 1:1-10; Matthew 22:15-22
29th Oct: Leviticus 19:1-2, 15-18; Ps 1; 1 Thess 2:1-8; Matt 22:34-end

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