St Ladoca Parochial Church Council Annual Report 2021

THE PARISH CHURCH OF ST LADOCA IN THE PARISH OF LADOCK

 

The Annual Report of the Parochial Church Council for THE PARISH CHURCH OF ST LADOCA IN THE PARISH OF LADOCK 2021

 

 

‘Ladock Church is a place to welcome and embrace all who come to hear the word of God, to worship and pray, and for fellowship. This motivates and enables us to reach out to the wider community to share the love of God’.

 

The Annual Report and Financial Statement of the Parochial Church Council for 2021 for presentation at the Annual Parish Church Council Meeting in Ladock Church.

 

The report has been prepared to comply with the requirements of The Charities Act 2011.

 

Incumbent: Reverend Joachim Foot

The Sanctuary Probus

 

Associate Priest: Reverend Linda Whetter

Curate: Reverend Paul Salaman

 

Banks: Lloyds Bank St Austell, CAF Bank

 

Treasurer: David James

 

Independent Examiner: Mr Geoffrey Warring

 

The Parochial Church Council is a corporate body established by the Church of England. The PCC operates under the Parochial Church Council Measure. The Parochial Church Council is expected by order to register with the charity commissioners.

 

Members of the Parochial Church Council of Ladock Parish Church are either ex-officio or elected by the Annual Church Council meeting in accordance with the Church Representation Rules.

 

The Parochial Church Council met four times during 2021. Shirley Soper is our designated Safeguarding Officer.

 

The Standing Committee, which consists of the incumbent, one church warden, treasurer and secretary, is the only committee required by law and has the power to transact the business of the PCC between its meetings, subject to any directions given by the Council.

 

Members of the Parochial Church Council for 2021:

 

Incumbent: The Reverend Joachim Foot, Rector of the Probus Benefice.

Non Stipendary Associate Priest: Reverend Linda Whetter

Curate: Reverend Paul Salaman

 

Ex officio

 

Church Warden: Jeremy Sharp

Bell Tower Captain: Jonathan Young

 

Head Teacher of Grampound Road School Head Teacher Ladock School (Chris Stoyles)

 

Elected members

 

Chair: Reverend Joachim Foot

Lay Vice Chair: Shirley Soper

Associate Priest: Reverend Linda Whetter

Curate: Reverend Paul Salaman

Secretary: Jennifer Thomas

Safeguarding Officer: Shirley Soper

Fabric Officer: Simon Holborow

Administration and Electoral Roll Officer: Barbara Holt

Website and Rotas: Suzanne Smith

Vanessa Morcom

 

Deanery Synod Representative: Jeremy Sharp

 

At the end of 2021 the Electoral Roll number stood at 33.

 

Rector's Report

In putting together my annual report for 2021 it struck me that in normal times we like to recall the events of the past year. We think about how these events have compared to previous years and about the new things we may have tried. 2021 can hardly be described as a 'normal' year. We were unable to carry on as normal and so judging the 'success' or otherwise of the year in quantifiable terms is rather difficult. That has left me pause for thought really. I do wonder if perhaps it is better for us to think a little differently.

The main criteria we should be using really is how and where we have discerned and responded to God's will for us through the past year rather than using an arbitrary 'we held this event and x many people came'. Because what has stood out for me throughout the blessed covid pandemic is the sheer resilience of our Church to weather the changes and chances of this life. It speaks to me of the depth of dedication and commitment to serving our Lord that is in all of you. We could have simply shut up shop and hidden away in the dark until covid had passed us by. Instead you were proactive and creative in your approaches to fulfilling the Gospel call upon us all to love our neighbours as ourselves. Even if it does not always feel like we have 'done' very much, the fact that we are still standing after two very difficult years is a miracle in itself, praise the Lord.

I cannot write about 2021 without saying something about the birth of Raphael. I want to thank you all for bearing with my family as we have adjusted to our new addition to the family. You have all been so wonderfully welcoming and accommodating which is, I think, a real testament to the community here in Ladock.

 

Whilst I do not want to dwell on what we have done specifically I will mention a few highlights. It has been a real delight to have the choir so ably carrying on in spite of all the covid restrictions. My continued thanks to Margaret and all who sing. The Sunday club has been a continued delight, it is wonderful to see new faces coming into church.

The small but faithful gathering for morning prayer on a Tuesday morning continues to be a mainstay of the week for me. In the quietness of the church we take time to pray together with our Lord and set ourselves up wonderfully for the rest of the day.

The two highlights of the year for me, were I think Easter and St Stephen's Day. In spite of all the doom and gloom of Covid, Easter Day was a really joyful occasion, helped on its way with my, rather questionable, refreshments afterwards(!) St Stephen's Day was a wonderful challenge to expectations with a congregation far larger than I was expecting and a really festive spirit throughout, thank you all who turned out for it.

I want to thank those who have cared for us all so well after the service by providing the refreshments. Sharing time together after the service is such an important part of our fellowship that really helps to keep our community together.

I also want to thank Joe for his untiring commitment to his role of churchwarden. David for his able accountancy skills, Shirley for safeguarding us all, Jenny for keeping me organised as Secretary, Simon for looking after the building, Barbara keeping everyone up to date and the rotas working and Suzanne and Nessa for all their contributions to keeping the church functioning so smoothly.

From looking back over the year I want to urge us all to look forward with renewed hope for our community. May we continue to proclaim the message of Christ's saving love with throughout 2022 and onwards.

Rev Joachim Foot

 

Churchwarden’s Report

The Church and its community have continued to recover from the aftermath of the lockdowns of 2020 and the early part of 2021, the Omicron scare at the end of the year notwithstanding. Fortunately we were allowed to have our normal services without too much disruption throughout 2021 and congregations have recovered to close to pre-pandemic levels. Our finances have remained relatively healthy, thanks to those who chosen to support us via the Parish Giving scheme; the collection plate has been fuller than in the past also. We are one of the few parishes in the deanery that have been able to pay our MMF contribution in full. Fund raising activities have been severely restricted but nevertheless we have managed to attract funds through raffles and similar schemes. As always nothing would have been achieved without the leadership of our clergy, Joachim, Linda, Paul, Pat and Greg; the support I have received from all PCC members and the wider Church and village community has been invaluable too. I am deeply grateful to all concerned.

 

Looking at the outside world, beyond our parish and benefice, the storm clouds appear to be gathering. Some parishes are struggling to reopen after the pandemic, the bishops seem to distracted by issues that are of little practical help, whilst the financial position of the Church as a whole has deteriorated alarmingly. It is recognised that some retrenchment is necessary, but it is unfortunate that many bishops and senior clergy have chosen to respond to the challenges by seeking to impose new practices and structures, at the expense of traditional, time honoured, methods of spreading the Gospel. In our experience, it is this approach that resonates with those seeking reassurance in difficult times. The On the Way process that started for our deanery as 2021 drew to a close could be an opportunity to emphasise the importance of what churches such as St Ladoca have sought to achieve over the years; it is very much to be hoped that it will not end up as an attempt to impose modish ‘solutions ’to current difficulties that waste precious resources and simply alienate those they are intended to attract.

 

Fortunately, I feel that we in Ladock are in good heart and that we will continue to rise to any challenges

that we may face in 2022. Jeremy Sharp

 

Objectives and Activities

The objective of the Parochial Church Council of Ladock Parish Church is to exercise the responsibility of co- operating with the incumbent in promoting the Ecclesiastical Parish, the whole mission of the Church: pastoral, evangelistic, social and ecumenical.

 

Clergy

As indicated above, our clergy have worked tirelessly to ensure that the pattern of services has been maintained. They have sought to maintain pastoral contacts, by telephone and where possible in person: Reverend Linda Whetter has been especially active in this respect and we have had many expressions of appreciation of her work. Once again the Reverend Paul Salaman has used his technical skills to good effect, providing online services for those who have needed them and working on improving communications between the parishes. Our rector has been working with the school, fostering an already strong relationship. We would like to convey our congratulations to Joachim and Roxana on the birth of their third child, Raphael, in October.

 

Services

We succeeded in keeping the church open and having all our scheduled Sunday services, including Evensong, which we were able to resume in the summer. The Choir accompanied us whenever they could, on the first and third Sundays of the month; we remain grateful to Margaret Edwards and all the choir members for their enthusiasm and dedication. We are lucky to have a new organist, Roger Freeman, who plays at Evensong on the fourth Sunday and at the morning service on the second Sunday. We were able to hold the normal Mothering Sunday, Harvest, Remembrance and Carol services, all of which were well attended by people who do not normally come to church on a regular basis. The PCC wreath on Remembrance Sunday was laid by one of Ladock’s most respected residents, Nigel Kendall.

We have resumed serving coffee after the Sunday services. T

The Sunday Club on the fourth Sunday was suspended during the January Lockdown, but it resumed shortly thereafter. Numbers are growing steadily under the guidance of Roxana Foot. Work is in hand to involve the children with the main service and vice versa.

Thanks to the good offices of Reverend Foot, the School has been using the Church for services and assemblies, two or three times a week during term time. The whole school is present for the end of term Eucharists.

The average attendance on Sundays has been 20.

There were 4 weddings, 4 baptisms and 3 funerals during the year.

 

Pastoral

Successive lockdowns have affected several of our members badly. Some have been reluctant to venture out in public and two have moved into residential care. Supporting them and their families has been challenging but in most cases we have been able to remain in contact, providing practical help wherever possible (and permitted). Reverend Linda Whetter took the lead in this respect, but Shirley Soper continued to send cards to those who were alone and known to be vulnerable.

 

In an effort to replace the much-missed monthly coffee mornings, several ‘Zoomalong ’events took place in the early part of the year. These were organised by Barbara Holt and focused on a set topic of general interest. The coffee mornings resumed in the Community Hall in October amid general rejoicing. There have been discussions about engaging an intern Youth Worker for the benefice. Reverend Paul Salaman undertook to investigate the possibility of doing so.

Fund Raising

We planned a fête for September, but we were forced to cancel due to the local surge in Covid cases. The raffle went ahead and produce that could not be kept for another time was sold on a stall outside. Newest member of the clergy, Reverend Paul Salaman (pictured), opened this mini-fête. In the event we were able to bring in approximately £1,000. The Johnny Cowling concert was postponed again, until February 2022.

 

Ecumenical

It has not proved possible to provide a presence in Grampound Road, following the closure of the Chapel, several attempts to do so notwithstanding. Several members of the congregation now worship at Ladock on a regular basis. Some of the furniture and artefacts, dating from the Mission Church days have been placed in Ladock Church. These include a wooden memorial cross, a brass cross and candlesticks, a small font and some glassware.

Service

We were proud to learn that Shirley Soper was to receive a High Sheriff’s Unsung Heroes award in recognition of all her work to keep people in touch during the pandemic and her unstinting service to the Church and community over the years. The award was made by the High Sheriff after the Sunday service in early March.

 

 

 

 

Health and Safety

We continued to apply the Covid regulations sensitively and practically, undertaking risk assessments where appropriate, in particular the return of the Sunday Club and some visits by the School. The annual PAT Testing was undertaken as required and we are due a full electrical inspection in 2022. There have been no serious incidents or other Health and Safety issues.

 

Churchyard Report

Colin Haines has continued to maintain the churchyard to a high standard, for which we are most grateful.

The Parish Council paid for and planted some wildflower seed in the new extension. The wildflower area that has been created will form part of the garden of rest in due course. We have been awaiting the contract for the purchase of the land for the burial area for some time; the Diocesan solicitor was in touch to begin the legal process at the end of the year.

Jeremy Sharp

 

Fabric Report

The fabric of the Church is in good order on the whole, although plaster falling from the ceiling has been a recurrent issue. We have been consulting with the DAC over cost effective ways of dealing with the problem, but English Heritage has raised some concerns. The vestry door has been repaired; as noted elsewhere, the pew heating system is working well. We have engaged West Access to inspect the roof and clear gutters on a regular basis. We are grateful to Cornwall Historic Churches Trust for their grant to help offset the cost.

 

Choir Report

It was lovely to be able to get together to sing again, and as soon as we were allowed, we resumed Practices and Sung Services with the changing restrictions adhered to. We thank Margaret, Choirmistress and Organist, for keeping up with Covid rules and making this possible. We welcomed new members into the choir: David James and Pam Dodd have enhanced respectively the bottom and the top lines, and have quickly become an integral part of our group. This now comprises four sopranos, two altos, two/three basses and one/two tenors (Michael is very flexible!) On occasion we have been augmented by some of the Probus Choir - which has been a real joy. We were able to sing at Carol Services both here and in Probus at Christmas with them (the choir carols for which were world-wide choices, reflecting the continuing global concerns of the community within and outside the church). We hope to invite them to sing with us again at the Platinum Jubilee Service, for which we are learning a specially composed piece. We are led well by Margaret, stretched to learn new anthems as well as sing old favourites. We are in good heart.

Jo Nicolle

 

Bellringers Report

Bell ringing was severely curtailed across the country in 2021 due to the effects of Covid, and Ladock was no different. We signified a number of sad events; the tenor bell was tolled for the National Day of Reflection and the deaths of Captain Sir Tom Moore and the Duke of Edinburgh.

The bells were silent for many months and it was real delight be able to come back. The village Facebook group suggested it wasn’t just us missing the sound of the bells. We resumed our twice monthly practices and service ringing as well as the occasional wedding. It was pleasing that after all the disruption our band has almost returned to full health although we have lost a number of visitors from Probus.

The bells have been thoroughly inspected. They remain a ‘challenging ’set of bells but we do try to maintain them as best we can.

We are now busy planning for events in 2022 including the Platinum Jubilee. We hope to encourage some people to come and have a go- we’re always looking for more ringers. There will also be some celebratory ringing over the weekend which will be far better than the sad events of 2021.

During our prolonged absence Renfree Stephens retired as Tower Captain. It should not be underestimated the time and work Renfree has committed to the tower over the years and it will be a difficult act for me to follow.

Jonathan Young, Tower Captain

 

Safeguarding Report

Since the last Annual Report, finally things have improved within the restrictiveness of church life due to Covid. The church warden and clergy have and continue to be vigilant at all times in keeping abreast with the House of Bishops advice on Covid 19 and the welfare and safety of all who enter our church. For the most part our congregation are now familiar and accepting of the remaining changes which have been implemented to worship within the church safely.

Ladock Parish church takes safeguarding very seriously and tries to keep everyone safe and free from harm. Ladock church Safeguarding Policy is reviewed annually by the PCC and Safeguarding is addressed at every PCC meeting.

Every member of Ladock PCC has undertaken some training in safe guarding. Several this past year have updated their training which in mandatory for them whilst other PCC members have showed a wish to refresh their training and will do so shortly although they are under no obligation to do so. This is very refreshing and shows commitment on their part. Thank you to all Ladock’s PCC for your time and effort in keeping up to date.

A record is kept of training and DBS checks by myself.

A Data Dash Board has been set up for each Parish and I have registered but as yet have not put any information into the system and this is due to time element.

 

Some members of the Parochial Church Council and all clergy require DBS checks (Disclosure and Barring service) due to the positions they hold within Ladock Church. All of these are up to date. Checks are now made 3 yearly and not every 5 years.

For some years Mrs J Thomas has undertaken the role of instigating DBS checks and I would like to thank her for her commitment and time.

For the forth coming year these checks will be instigated by Dr D Jenkins of Grampound.

Due to the Covid restrictions, face to face training is still not happening and for many Zoom features on the horizon and or the Church of England web portal. For many this has been an education in itself. The upside of using Zoom means that travelling to unfamiliar venues particularly on cold winter nights, at present is a thing of the past.

All PCC members have participated in the education process into the Safer Recruitment and People Management Guidance last Autumn and early this year. Some members have undertaken training which enables them to recruit should the need arise in Ladock Parish.

Details of safeguarding contacts are displayed within the porch at Ladock church. Anyone may and should use these details should they have a concern.

Any safeguarding issues that have occurred within the past 12 months have been dealt with in the strictest confidence. Help and advice is sought and given freely from the Diocese safeguarding team on such matters and I am most grateful to them.

‘Ours ’is the reason to report but not investigate any issues that may crop up. Anyone reporting to the PSO or clergy is confidential.

Confidential documentation is kept and stored under lock and key away from the church building.

Training is available on the subject of Domestic Abuse which we hope several of our PCC will take up in the future amongst their busy lives.

We read daily and see on the News all kinds of abuse throughout the country, sadly it happens on our

doorstep also in Cornwall.

If we as a Church and PCC can only help but one individual, we will have done a good Job. Thank you to you all.

Shirley Soper, Parish Safeguarding Officer

 

 


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