Stambourne Newsletter

Published and distributed by Stambourne Parish Council No. 243

PARISH COUNCIL MEETING – Thursday 16th JanuaryThe first meeting of the year took place on Thursday 16 January 2018 at 7.30pm in the village hall, Stambourne

Pavilion – Some good news – The Parish Council made an application for grant funding to the Community Initiatives Fund of Essex County Council. The application was successful and the Parish Council has been awarded the sum of £3,300. This will be used towards refurbishing and replacing the toilets in the pavilion. It is anticipated work will commence in the spring and will greatly improve the pavilion.

PlanningOne application has been received no 18/00060/FUL.

War Memorial - As you may remember the Parish Council were able to renovate the war memorial with help from a grant from the War Memorials Trust. The next step is to define the lettering on the memorial. We will keep you advised of progress.

Budget and Precept for 2018/19
As I have reported in previous years, each January the Parish Council has to agree its budgets for the upcoming financial year. As part of this Braintree District Council provide some funding. However, they have been gradually reducing this funding year on year with the aim that it will be zero by 2020.

For the financial year 2018/19 the Parish Council budget has been agreed at £8,000 less £364.00 from Braintree District Council resulting in a precept of £7,636.00. As a comparison, for the year 2017/18 the Parish Council’s budget was agreed at £7,905 and it received £728.00 from Braintree District Council, resulting in a precept figure of £7,177.

Full minutes are available on the website at

The next meeting will take place on Thursday 15 March 2018 at 7.30pm in the village hall.

Full minutes are available on the village website:

Debbie Hilliard
Parish Clerk
01440 785 629


After editing the newsletter for some 8 years, Steve Platt will be stepping down from the role. Thank you to Steve for all his work during that time. We are now looking for a volunteer to take over. If you are interested and want more details of what is involved please contact Steve at or anyone from the Parish Council.

ST. PETER & ST. THOMAS BECKET PARISH CHURCHWould like to start by saying a very big thank you to those who attended the carol service on 10th December, despite the heavy fall of snow that day. Also to the Stambourne singers (many who travelled quite far) for a lovely service as always. The refreshments were very welcomed by all.

Christmas morning is always a special service & it was nice to welcome visitors that morning to our church. On 31st December we said goodbye to rev. Barbara as she took her last service at a very packed lt. Yeldham church.  We wish her well in her retirement.  **** Lost Property****
We have started to build up a little lost property section in the church from recent services.  Please come & have a look just inside the church if you think you may have left gloves or scarves.
Services for the next two months: February  4th

Morning prayer     9.30am     sally
February 11th
Holy communion     9.30am     rev. Liz Paxton
February 18th  no service @ Stambourne.  Please see notice board for other services in the benefice
February 25th
Morning prayer     9.30am     Dave Brown March 4th

Morning prayer     9.30am     Dave Brown
March  11th
Holy communion with baptism of Bethany Hyatt   9.30am   rev. Liz Paxton
March 18th
No service @ Stambourne.  

Please see notice board for other services in the benefice.
March 25th 
Palm Sunday
benefice walk- Castle Hedingham church 10am to Sible Hedingham baptist church & finish at Sible Hedingham church. If unable to walk the distance  please join in at one or more of the churches on the route.

Looking ahead!!

Easter Sunday is early this year on 1st April.  We will be holding a holy communion service @  9.30am with rev.  Liz Paxton to which all are welcome.

CHURCHWARDEN 01440 785752  /  07879816362


Dear friends,

I am writing this in mid-January and still feel that I am recovering from an extraordinarily busy period that included Christmas and a wonderful carol service with the Stambourne Singers in December. Combined with the cold / flu which everyone seems to have had to a greater or lesser degree we could all do with a quiet period.
However this year sees a very early Easter (April 1
st) and Lent is almost upon us. Lent is a time of preparation as we look forward to Easter and is often a time when people ‘give things up’, often chocolate or cakes or sweets but sometimes something different like watching television. But I don’t really want to think about giving things up for Lent, although if you decide to do this you have my admiration and best wishes – let me know what your plans are!

I wanted to encourage you to think about doing something positive in Lent. Have a think about it perhaps do something helpful for someone you don’t know every day for 40 days. Or, you could decide to read the Bible on a daily basis through Lent – I would be happy to make some suggestions if that would help.
Or you could decide to try something new from Fairtrade, ethically sourcing some of your weekly shop – and join the current project to stop using as much plastic as possible, especially single use plastics. And of course, don’t forget the foodbank.
Let me know your plans.
Whatever you decide to do or not do during Lent, I hope it is a useful time for you as you think about your relationship with God and prepare for Easter. Please consider coming along to our Easter services - we would love to see you there and hear your thoughts on Lent.

With every blessing.

Rev. Liz Paxton

February is traditionally the month we start coming out of winter blues, so let us be encouraged: summer won't be long - or as my niece said on Christmas evening – only 365 days to Christmas. What a thought!

Now one thing has struck me recently - how often do we talk about tomorrow and how it will be better and how we can be in a better place, and how we propose to change our situation. We are always looking to tomorrow, and I suppose in some ways we were taught at school to think like that. Get your exams and you will have a better job, better prospects, etc. And all our life we keep thinking it will be better in future. But for most of us it doesn't seem to get better, but either more of the same, or a change in the types of worries and concerns we have.

Jesus said “I came so that everyone would have life, and have it in its fullest.” (John 10:10b)

Jesus also said in Matthew 11:28 “If you are tired from carrying heavy burdens, come to me and I will give you rest.”

So rather than living to gather fortunes or trying to make things better for ourselves every day, we can live for the moment, for the day, making things better for those around us each day, rather than for ourselves.

We can give rather than take, living our lives in ways that are seen by people around to be different and governed not by the Keynesian rules of the market, but the rules of the Scriptures that once were the basis of all our laws.

Then life gets filled with things that really do fulfil that hunger we have inside of us for finding the bigger meaning of life..
We are running an Alpha course at Chapel these next two months. It's not too late to join this opportunity to explore the meaning of life, the reason we are here, the purpose for our existence. These sessions allow us to just chat about how we each believe it all hangs together.... And at the end we may go away with confirmation of our own beliefs. We may change our view of life and find a new way forward – but for each person it will be different and personal and not the view of the whole group or for that matter the Chapel!

Do come and join us on a Monday afternoon at 4:30pm. We finish at 6:30pm and there is a light meal provided too... Just let us know you are coming using the contacts below...

Events at Chapel
11th February 2pm – Launch of the Spurgeon Trail. We have a new notice board that provides visitors with information about one of Stambourne's most famous residents – Charles Haddon Spurgeon. You may know that he spent the first seven years of his life in the Manse at Chapel End Way, Stambourne, with his grandparents. His granddad, James, was minister at the chapel for 54 years, and Charles often visited in later life and took his grandfathers funeral service here in 1864. So we have a link to a famous man – it is said that people came from USA to London to see Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London and catch a Spurgeon Sermon – he was that famous!

On the 11th February we have Dr Christian T George, curator of the Spurgeon Library at the Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Kansas, Missouri, USA who will deliver the word at our Sunday morning service starting at 10:45am, followed by a light lunch and then the launch of “the Spurgeon Trail” at 2pm when we invite all to come and be part of this key event in the life of the village. We have had visitors from Texas, Canada, Ireland and Holland and this will enable us to provide more of Spurgeon's teachings to those visitors and allow them to research this great man's background and visit the sites that he would have known when he lived here.

Other Dates
February 11th Spurgeon Trail Launch 10:45am Service followed by lunch and 2pm Launch event. February 13th Pancake Day – 10-12 (coffee morning) March 30th Good Friday Service April 1st Easter Sunday May 1st Plant Swap and Sale – get prepared!!
Computer Course: Learning the basics of using a computer: email, web access, and producing documents - will happen after Easter.
Food Hygiene: A course designed for volunteers who regularly prepare food for any voluntary organisation. Contact us for details.

Our Worship Service is held at 10:45 am followed by coffee 1st Sunday join us for a Communion Service 2nd and 3rd Sundays Lively Worship Services sometimes with visiting preachers 4th Sunday - Service followed by Lunch together
Every Tuesday - 10-12am Coffee and Chat. Discussion and craft over coffee and biscuits. Come and join a little time out for fun and friendship!

Every Tuesday – Stambourne Worship Team Practice evening. Join us at 7pm for prayer, and 7:30pm for the music. If you play an instrument or sing we would welcome you to come and see whether you could join us.
Every Wednesday - 7pm Intercessory Prayers.
 If you would like prayer for your needs or for a friend or family member then please let us know or come and join us. Drop a note through our letter box..

Contacts: Adrian Burr, Minister, 01440 730211, 07983 656166,
Brian Mead, Secretary, 01376 345377,
Facebook: Stambourne Chapel


In an effort to help Stambourne Neighbourhood Watch stamp out robberies and vandalism in our beautiful village, a WhatsApp Group has been set up.  This is a fast, simple, secure messaging system that is easy to use and gives us the ability to immediately alert everyone in the Group of anything suspicious going on in the village or surrounding areas.

Contact Vicky Dowling on 07778 410376 who will arrange for you to be included.   Your full name and address will also be required.


Fibre broadband can now be ordered from multiple providers and will increase speeds for many in the village, although if you are a long way from the cabinet at Hill Farm, your speeds still may not be ideal. Updates will still be posted on the Stambourne website at :

SLG Stambourne Ladies’ Group

7.30pm WEDNESDAY, 14th FEBRUARY 2018

We’re celebrating our Annual General Meeting and would welcome any suggestions, criticisms and ideas for the year ahead. This promises to be an interesting and entertaining evening and we’d love you to come and join in. Enjoy our delicious buffet and refreshments and feel free to bring along your own tipple!

Call Annabel 01440 785809 or Vicky 01440 785528 or see our Facebook page for more!


As this is my final newsletter, I’d like to thank everyone who has contributed over the past 8 years and have put up with me nagging them for content every couple of months! Please contact the Parish Council or keep an eye on to find out who will take items for the newsletter in the future. Steve Platt.