Friends of Chester Cathedral Newsletter

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					Friends of Chester Cathedral Newsletter
                                                       and Annual Report
                                                              June 2008

                                    Chester Mystery Plays
 Historical Background                                                                                      Whitsuntide.       Few town
In the 14th century Church                                                                                  guilds in medieval Britain
services were conducted in                                                                                  were able to afford such
Latin and the monks at the                                                                                  pageantry, but of those who
Abbey of St Werburgh (now                                                                                   did, original scripts survive
Chester Cathedral) enacted                                                                                  from only five cities, Chester's
stories from the Bible to help                                                                              being the most complete in
those who couldn't otherwise                                                                                existence with a near-
follow      or      understand.                                                                             complete text of 24 plays. The
Eventually this proved too                                                                                  Original Texts of the Chester
disruptive and the plays were                                                                               cycle are held by the British
moved outside, after which                                                                                  Library, the Bodleian Library
they     were    adopted      by                                                                            and the Huntington Library in
individual companies of the                                                                                 California. One play is in the
Freemen and Guilds of Chester,                                                                              National Library of Wales at
a 100 years old group of trade                                                                              Aberystwyth. The City of
companies. For example, the                                                                                 Chester also possesses one
Grocers, Bakers and Millers                                                                                 original text “The Scourging
performed “The Last Supper”,                                                                                of Christ”.
and the Ironmongers undertook                                                                               Mystery plays were banned
“The Crucifixion”. A powerful                                                                               nationally in the 16th century.
force in the city, the Guilds                                                                               Chester was the last to
protected the interests and                                                                                 concede in 1578 and so
welfare of fellow merchants                                                                                 became the longest-running
and craftsmen, while playing a                                                                              cycle in medieval times.
major part in social, political                                                                             Revived in 1951 for the
and economic life. Their                                                                                    Festival of Britain, they have
influence      extended        to                                                                           since been staged every five
organising major events, one of                                                                             years. Chester Mystery Plays
which became Chester Mystery                                                                                Ltd,    a     company      with
Plays as medieval street theatre.                                                                           charitable status, was formed
The guilds staged the plays on          This hand made quilted tapestry in the South Transept of the
                                                                                                            in the 1980s with the sole aim
open pageant wagons which                 Cathedral shows scenes from the Chester Mystery Plays.            of ensuring the active survival
trundled through the streets to                                                                             of the plays. Board members
‘stations' where the audience gathered. The first station was outside traditionally include the Lord Mayor of Chester and the Dean of
Abbey Gate - audiences today pass through the same place to see the Chester. The current chairman is Jo Sykes, the company secretary
modern version of the plays. The medieval route continued down Ian Sanderson, and the financial director Peter Overmeer.
Northgate to the Cross then along Watergate, cutting next into Bridge
                                                                                        Chester Mystery Plays 2008
Street then Eastgate.
                                                                        This year, plays will be staged on the Cathedral Green from June
              Mystery Plays or Miracle Plays?                           28th to July 19th. They are performed in the open air while the
A play that dramatises an episode from the Old or New Testament is audience is seated under cover in tiered stands in the shadow of
called a mystery; one that dramatises the life of a saint is a miracle. Chester Cathedral, whose own story can be traced back to 907AD.
The word 'mystery' comes from the French mystère meaning craft, This spectacular festival is presented mainly by amateurs under
and apprentices joined the guilds to learn their 'mystery' or craft. professional direction; it is one of the largest community events in
When the guildsmen began dramatising the Bible stories, their plays the UK, with hundreds of enthusiasts of all ages from throughout
thus became known as 'mysteries'. Simultaneously in Europe there the region making up the cast. The Artistic director is Robin
arose the French mystère, German Mysterienspiel, Italian sacra Goddard and the Composer & music director is Matt Baker.
rappresentazione and Spanish auto sacramental. Traces of similar The 2008 production is to be in two parts, The Prophecy and The
plays have been found in Denmark, Russia and states of central Fulfilment. Although the names are the same as in 2003 the
Europe. All such Christian epics were in the vernacular, each production will be very different. Each part is staged on alternate
containing local variations to suit the tastes of the different evenings at 7.30pm. A matinee of The Prophecy can be seen every
audiences.                                                              Saturday at 1pm. There will be no performance on Sundays.
The performance of these plays, laced with wit and humour and Book now for the Chester Mystery Plays - 28th June to 19th July 2008
staged on lavishly decorated waggons, became the highlight of the            See Box office 01244 304 618
Feast of Corpus Christi, later stretching over three days at
                                       Vice Dean – A Canon in Residence
Dear Friends,                                                                               finest concerts I have attended in the
We clergy at the Cathedral take it in turns to be                                           Cathedral. We remain the only large venue
‘in residence’. In the nineteenth century the                                               in the city for concerts, and the acoustics and
clergy would move into Abbey Square with                                                    the welcome given by our staff are always
their families for three months, do their stint of                                          appreciated. Then on the Saturday nearly
duty, and then return to their parishes.                                                    900 people came to the Cathedral in the
Nowadays being ‘in residence’ means taking                                                  evening for a splendid concert by the Black
responsibility for leading much of the day-to-                                              Dyke brass band, one of the finest brass
day worship, helping plan and lead special                                                  bands in the world, and the Chester Male
services, welcoming people to special events,                                               Voice Choir. Then it was back to Sunday
and generally being on call. We do a fortnight                                              and the usual run of services – no special
at a time. Let me tell you about one particular,                                            ones this time.
fairly recent fortnight when I was in residence,                                            The second week was a somewhat quieter
to give you an idea of what goes on in the Cathedral.                    one, but ‘quiet’ does not mean I wasn’t busy. There was a
It was not untypical, except that just before it started the BBC         Chapter meeting all Tuesday morning, and I had to go straight
‘Antiques Roadshow’ was held in the Nave. Some of the Friends,           from that to meet Claire Chatterton in the Lady Chapel and 60
including members of the Council and some of its officers, were          children from a local primary school. She had asked if I would
on duty that day, and you will find a full report on it later in this    dress up in my Eucharistic vestments and talk about the
newsletter. It involved an immense amount of work for many of            symbols embroidered on them. The vestments were made for
our paid staff and many of our volunteers, and I was very proud          me many years ago by Pat Lockwood, my mother-in-law. Her
of the Cathedral that day. The very next morning I was taking a          work is very beautiful, and means a great deal to me, as you can
funeral in the Quire, and I had warned the family that the Nave          imagine. The red chasuble has an eagle embroidered on it,
would still be in some chaos. It wasn’t. Everything was almost           based on the eagle on the altar frontal at St John’s College,
back to normal, and that was due, of course, to the efficiency of        Cambridge, where I was a student. ‘What do you think this is,’
the huge BBC team, but also to the labours of our own staff, one         I asked the children. ‘An eagle,’ a little girl said at once. Not
of whom had finally turned the key in the lock at 11.45pm the            bad for a seven year old. ‘Well done!’ I said. ‘Now this is a
previous night.                                                          hard question,’ I went on, ‘but why do you think Pat put an
                                                                         eagle there?’ ‘Well,’ a small boy replied, ‘sometimes when you
The funeral was for someone who had long been a member of our
                                                                         draw a dove, it comes out looking like an eagle – at least it did
congregation, and was a particularly poignant occasion, as her
                                                                         when I tried it.’ Wonderful!
husband was too ill to attend. I am now about to talk to the
family about his funeral, for less than a month later he too has         ‘Weightwatchers’ were in the Cloister Room on the Monday for
died. The first service was hard enough for the family. This one         their weekly meeting, the Spring series of Cathedral Bible talks
will surely be harder still.                                             began on Wednesday, with the Dean in the hot seat and the
                                                                         usual crowd of 50-60 people there, the Friends Council met that
But that first funeral was followed the next day by a wedding for
                                                                         evening, and the Light Project, a Christian organization which
the daughter of the Archdeacon of Chester, taken by the Dean.
                                                                         does work among young people in the city, held two receptions
(That’s the way of churches and cathedrals: great sadness one day
                                                                         on the Friday and Saturday evenings. I spent an hour and a half
and great joy the next).
                                                                         on the Saturday morning with a delightful couple who are
On the Sunday, after the 8.00am Communion Service and the                getting married in the Cathedral in November, and then that
Cathedral Eucharist at 10.00, we were back in sombre mood for            afternoon I went back again from joy to grief. Keith Ineson, the
the Baby Loss Memorial Service. This is held every year for              Agricultural Chaplain for Cheshire had organized a special
those who have lost babies before, during or after childbirth.           service for farming families who had lost a loved one, either
Each time the Nave is fairly full. The Cathedral becomes then a          through accident or suicide. Once again the Cathedral came
place where those small lives, hardly begun, perhaps not begun at        into its own, and several people told Keith afterwards it was
all outside the womb, are honoured, the grief that surrounds them        just what they needed.
is valued, and all are exposed to the warm love of God.
                                                                         A lot else happened in that fortnight, and there was a lot more
There were two more services for me to take that Sunday, a               in my own diary, but most fortnights here are just as busy – two
session with the adult Confirmands on the Monday evening (what           concerts with Aled Jones and the Cathedral choir took place
a good group they are! But then I always say that), then on the          here the very next week.
Tuesday a newly appointed Church Commissioner spent the day
                                                                         The work of prayer and worship goes on, at least three services
with us. We talked money, of course, but lots of other things, too,
                                                                         each day. In the midst of all the busyness we find again and
especially the purpose of this place and its significance for the
                                                                         again the profound silence of the place, are lifted into heaven by
mission of the wider Church.
                                                                         an exquisite solo by one of our choristers, or exhilarated by the
‘The Antiques Roadshow’ was a first for us, but so was the               thundering of the organ.
interfaith event on the Wednesday of the first week of my
                                                                         The stones of this place have many tales to tell. As for me, I
fortnight. Members of an interfaith group in the city, and
                                                                         will be telling people the story of that little boy’s comment on
representatives of other faiths, including Islam and Buddhism,
                                                                         the eagle on my chasuble for a long time to come.
attended the midday Eucharist in the Nave, and then stayed for a
bring-and-share lunch and a short talk from me on the meaning of         And you are the Friends of it all! Thank you!
the Eucharist. The questions asked and the comments made were
very interesting.                                                                                               Trevor Dennis (Vice Dean)
That evening the Manchester Camerata played, with Jennifer Pike
as soloist in Vivaldi’s ‘Four Seasons’. I think it was one of the
                                                                  Some Cathedral Events – June to December 2008
                                                                            This is not a full list of events and is subject to alteration
                                                                                          Please check nearer the time.

                                                                Saturday      14     5.00 pm Ordination of Priests
                                                                Sunday        15               FRIENDS’ DAY
                                                                Saturday      21     7.30 pm Chester Philharmonic Orchestra
                                                                Sunday        22     7.00 pm Nave Choir Concert
                                                                Thursday      26     7.30 pm Mystery Plays preview
                                                                Friday        27     7.30 pm Mystery Plays preview
                                                                           th            th
                                                                Saturday 28 – Saturday 19 July Mystery Plays performances
                                                                Sunday        29     6.00 pm Installation of the Bishop of Stockport and
    Chester Cathedral before the Victorian Restoration                                  Service of Welcome for Melanesian Bishops
           Back to Church Sunday                                Sunday         13
                                                                                           10.00 am   Ordination of Deacons
Back to Church Sunday (B2CS) - 28 September 2008 -              Monday         14          3.00 pm    Concert by Wells Cathedral Choir
is now in its fifth year having started in the Manchester       Sunday         20          7.30 pm    Summer Music Festival Concert
Diocese in 2004. It has grown steadily with over 2000           Tuesday        22          7.30 pm    Summer Music Festival Concert
churches involved in 2007. The Chester Diocese took             Wednesday      23          7.30 pm    Summer Music Festival Concert
                                                                Thursday       24          7.30 pm    Summer Music Festival Concert
part for the first time in 2007, with a hope that at least 60                    th
                                                                Friday         25          7.30 pm    Summer Music Festival Concert
churches would engage in the process, but over 180              Saturday       26
                                                                                           7.00 pm    Y Friday (Chesterfest Event)
churches applied for information packs. The purpose is                                                August
to encourage individuals and families who used to come                          nd
                                                                Saturday       2                      Cloister Garth – Garden Reopening
to church but have drifted away for a wide variety of           Sunday         31
                                                                                           6.30 pm    Taize Service
reasons to come back and explore, so B2CS is a simple                                              September
way of reaching out to them with a personal invitation                               th
                                                                Saturday       13                     Heritage Open Day
and a warm welcome.                                                              th
                                                                Saturday       13          7.00 pm    Oldham Choral Society, Verdi ‘Requiem’
At Chester Cathedral there is an opportunity to invite                           th
                                                                Saturday       27          6.30 pm    Licensing of Parish Workers
friends who used to come, who perhaps were baptized or                                               October
confirmed there, and to encourage them to come back             Tuesday        7
                                                                                           7.30 pm    Friends’ Lecture
and discover what ‘beautiful worship can really be like,        Saturday       11
                                                                                           7.30 pm    City of Chester Male Voice Choir Concert
supported by wonderful music and in such a magnificent          Saturday       18
                                                                                           2.15 pm    Readers Licensing Service
setting’.                                                       Saturday       25          7.30 pm    Monks, Music and Merriment
A key piece of learning from earlier years is that                                                 November
personal invitations work much better than blanket              Saturday     1             5.30 pm RSCM Service
                                                                                            th  th  th
invites or mail shots, with the individual who makes the        Wed.,Thurs., & Friday.     5 , 6 & 7 .University Degree Ceremonies
invitation, bringing their friend(s), having coffee with        Saturday     15            7.30 pm Chester Philharmonic Orchestra Concert
                                                                Saturday     22            7.30 pm Chester Music Society Concert
them and following them up afterwards. However                                 th
                                                                Sunday       30            3.30 pm Advent Carol Service
‘success’ is not measured by numbers or percentages,
and if one person comes back to church because of the
personal invitation of a friend, then it’s worked.                              See list of Christmas Services in late November
                                                                Friday         5           7.30 pm    NMC Charity Event ‘Spirit of Christmas’
                                                                Monday         15          7.30 pm    Chester Music Society Christmas Concert
                                               Henry Ratter     Tuesday        16
                                                                                           7.30 pm    Chester Music Society Christmas Concert
                                                                Friday         19          7.00 pm    Cathedral Choir Christmas Concert
Editors Note: Henry Ratter is a member of the Cathedral         Sunday         21          3.30 pm    Nave Choir Carol Service
Congregation who has been co-opted on to the Team of Clergy     Wednesday      24          3.00 pm    Cathedral Carol Service
and Lay People led by the Diocesan Parish Mission
Development Officer Revd. Richard Burton. They are charged
with supporting churches in
their preparations for this                                            Cathedral Services
year’s Back to Church                                                   (Subject to occasional variations)
Sunday.                         Weekdays:                                                  Sundays:
                                 0730    Morning Prayer (St Anselm's Chapel)               0800    Prayer Book Communion Service (said)
P.S. You don’t have to wait      1230    Eucharist (1130 on Thursdays)                     1000    Cathedral Eucharist
until September!                                                                                                  st   nd       th
                                 1730    Choral Evensong (said on Wednesdays)              1130    Sung Mattins, 1 , 2 , and 4 Sundays
                                 Saturdays:                                                    Prayer Book Eucharist - 3rd & 5th Sundays.
                                 0900      Morning Prayer (St Anselm's Chapel)             1530      Choral Evensong
 See Cathedral services and                                                                                           st
some Cathedral events listed     0930      Eucharist                                       1830      Evening Service 1 & 5th Sundays
  on this page, or go to the     1615      Choral Evensong
      Cathedral website
                                                                      Visitors Opening Hours
for up to date information on                                          Monday – Saturday                                 Sunday
     services and events.        Cathedral (for visitors)              0900 - 1700                                     1300 - 1600
                                 Cathedral Shop                        0930 - 1700                                     1100 – 1600
                                 Refectory                             0930 - 1630

               Retirement of Head Verger                                          Carlo Curley Organ Concert Success
                                                                                                                The nave was full on the
                                                                                                                Saturday evening after Easter for
                                                                                                                a visit by Carlo Curley, one of
                                                                                                                the world’s best-known organists
                                                                                                                and self styled “Pavarotti of the
                                                                                                                Organ”. His organ extravaganza
                                                                                                                ranged from Bach and Handel to
                                                                                                                Folk Tunes and an encore in the
                                                                                                                style of a cinema organ. A
                                                                                                                specially hired large screen at the

   Adrienne Elloy, Michael Kelsey, The Dean and Canon Humphries
                                                                             front of the nave showed the
After 18 years of loyal service to the Cathedral our Head Verger,            organ consol and enabled
Michael Kelsey, retired on Easter Day this year. At a ceremony in the        Carlo to address the audience.
refectory, Adrienne Elloy presented Michael Kelsey with a cheque             The programme also included
on behalf of the congregation. The congregation had raised the sum           an excellent range of choral
of £700, which reflected the high esteem in which Michael was held,          music sung by the Choir of
and gratitude for his loyal and unstinting service to the Cathedral.         Abbey Gate College under
The Precentor, Canon Humphries, thanked Michael for his many                 the direction of Stewart
skills including the organisation of great services where multiple           Smith. It was a most
processions had to be organised with military precision. Michael was         enjoyable evening, and this
a team player and had been long-suffering and patient when                   Cathedral venture supported
confronted with a multitude of complex problems and difficulties.            by the Friends was also a
 The Dean said that Michael was the “salt of the earth”. He had a            financial success – raising
wonderful capacity to communicate, never tried to impress, but when          over £2,000 for Cathedral
required called a spade a spade. He would always go that extra mile          funds.
in his duties and had been an excellent next-door neighbour.
Adrienne Elloy, who represents the congregation on the Chapter,
                                                                                 Aled Jones Concerts with the Cathedral Choir
recalled that when she was appointed to Chapter, she asked Michael
what to do at the first service she attended in an official capacity. He
looked at Adrienne squarely in the eyes and said “Just watch me
carefully and do exactly as I say”. Over the years, Michael has told
many Bishops and others where to go!
Everyone joined in wishing Michael and his wife Vivian a very long
and happy retirement. Michael briefly thanked everyone but said he
had to rush off as duty called. He subsequently wrote as follows to
thank the congregation.
“ I must first of all thank you for all your kind generosity, I feel very
humbled and overwhelmed by it. I would also like to thank you for
your friendship and support over the years. I will have lots of very
happy memories of my time at the Cathedral, and of the many friends
I have made. I apologise that I was unable to speak to you                   The long awaited visit of Aled Jones, promoted by the
individually, but no doubt our paths will cross sometime in the near         Cathedral, took place in April when he sang on two successive
future. I would also like to thank the Dean, Canon Humphries and             evenings with the Cathedral Choir. Not only were the musical
Adrienne Elloy for their kind words. My very best wishes to you all          performances much enjoyed, but the pleasant spring weather
for the future. Michael.”                                                    allowed the cloister garden to be open in the interval with
Few people realised when saying goodbye to Michael Kelsey after              drinks served in the cloisters.
his 18 years service to the Cathedral just how he ended up here in the                                           Aled Jones sang a
first place. Born in Rochdale, Mike had early links with the church                                              selection from his current
with Rev Bill Vanstone, then Michael's parish priest (and with a                                                 repertoire,    and     the
young Chris Samuels as his Parish Curate) From these early days in                                               Cathedral Choir sang a
Rochdale Michael's life was varied with a time spent serving in the                                              varied selection of sacred
Army, moves around the country and work in various trades, as well                                               and traditional music.
as his spare time taken up with his love of sport. As well as this,
                                                                                                                 Aled and the Choir
Mike met Vivian whom he married, and later they together moved to
                                                                                                                 together concluded the
Chester at the invitation of the now 'Canon' Vanstone. Mike arrived
as 3rd Verger and it wasn't long before he fitted in so well that it
                                                                                                                 first half with “All
seemed as though he had always been here. Over the following 18                                                  through the night” and
years Mike gave exemplary service to the Cathedral and those people                                              they both sang in the
connected to it simply by being himself. Becoming Head Verger at                                                 finale “How great thou
the retirement of Rod Duncalf, Michael then continued in his work                                               art”. The concerts were
                                                                                 Aled Jones with Canon Trevor
developing a strong team to cope with the changing demands faced                                                introduced by Nick Fry.
                                                                                  Dennis on the first evening
by the Vergers and other departments. Always kind-hearted and
approachable Michael will be sorely missed by all at the Cathedral.
              Christmas and Easter Stories                                                       Cathedral Appointments
                                          SPCK have recently brought
                                          out two new books by Canon                          New Chairman of the Cathedral Council
                                          Trevor Dennis, which he wrote           Following the departure of Ian Dunn, the Chapter of Chester
                                          in the autumn of 2006, when he          Cathedral is delighted to announce the appointment of Lt Gen Sir
                                          had a three-month sabbatical.           Edmund Burton KBE MA as Chairman of the Cathedral Council
                                          The Christmas Stories came out          with immediate effect.
                                          in August 2007, and The Easter
                                          Stories in January of this year.                                New Head Verger
                                          Both of them have already had           Following the retirement of Michael Kelsey (see page 4), the Dean
                                          to be reprinted.      They are          and Chapter are pleased to announce the appointment of Martin
                                          available in the Cathedral Shop         Fleet as Head Verger.
                                          at £9.99 each.                                                 (See message below)
                                          Jane Dowell wrote in the
                                          Methodist ‘Magnet’ magazine                      Message from the New Head Verger
                                          about the Christmas Stories:
                                            ‘Trevor Dennis continues to delight     To all at Chester Cathedral,
                                            and challenge his readers. So often
                                            the ‘Christmas Story’ as portrayed                                      My family and I look forward
                                         today comes from a mixture of carols,                                      very much to meeting you all
                                         nativity plays, children’s stories and                                     at Chester Cathedral and
                                         fine art. Trevor Dennis begins by                                          taking our part in the life and
                                         examining the two biblical stories in                                      worship that it ministers. I
                                         turn: Matthew’s tale of light shining                                      have spent fifteen happy years
                                         in darkness and Luke’s account full of                                     at Ely Cathedral with my wife
                                         light and joy. His own engagingly                                          Paula and our 3 children,
                                         written stories and reflections                                            Charlotte,     Lawrence     and
respond to the Church’s need for the vision of the incarnation, God in a                                            Edmund. St Werburgh was of
manger, to be relevant now. Trevor Dennis’ vivid, imaginative writing truly                                         course from Ely, so there is a
lights up the ‘Christmas story’ for our twenty-first century world.’                                                connection      with     Chester
The Editor of The Baptist Times, Mark Woods, wrote about The                                                        already!
Easter Stories: For the pastor or preacher, Trevor Dennis is always an               Before that I was a member of the Lee Abbey Christian
interesting and fruitful guide to the scriptures. His excellent Christmas           Community in Lynton, North Devon that caters for Christian
Stories is now followed by the equally challenging and illuminating Easter          retreats and conferences and before that I studied Fine Art at
Stories. His strength is in his deep involvement with the text as story,            Bretton Hall College of Further Education near Wakefield.
combined with an understated scholarship which means that his readings are          Cathedrals have a very special place within the life of the
never careless or indefensibly idiosyncratic. He ranges across the Old and          church and it is a great privilege to be invited to take my part
New Testaments to make unexpected connections and shed new light on old             within that life and worship at Chester. With that in mind I
tales. He also shares with us his storyteller’s ear for the music of the words:     look forward to moving up from Ely and getting to know you
‘Jesus’ invitation, “Come and have breakfast” is surely one of the great            all.
lines of the Bible. Sometimes the Bible’s storytellers and poets manage to
                                                                                    With warm regards
capture something indescribably precious of the mystery and the wonder of
God in a tiny handful of words,’ he says. Dennis is not just a critic, but a                                                     Martin Fleet
creative writer. The last part of the book contains some of his reflections,
designed for use in public worship. They repay private study as well. This is
a book to read and re-read. I found it very helpful indeed

                                                                  Friends Events
           Tuesday 3 June                    - Outing to Houghton Tower and Blackburn Cathedral                               - Fully Booked
           Sunday 15 June                    - Friends Day in the Cathedral                                         - See enclosed details
           Saturday 2 August                 - Cloister Garden Reopening                    - See enclosed Memorial Bench Appeal
           15 & 16 September                 - Autumn Outing to Ripley Castle and York                               - See enclosed leaflet
                                        Our overnight trip will be to the splendours of York. We shall visit the
                                        Pendle Heritage Centre, take lunch at Ripley Castle and attend
                                        Evensong at York Minster before going to our hotel - The Ramada
                                        Jarvis in Wetherby. The following day we shall visit York Minster for a
                                        special tour organised by the Surveyor to the Fabric including the
                                        restoration of the east front of the Minster and the Stone Yard. We shall
                                        then visit Harry Ramsden's for 'fish and chips' and to Rourke's Forge in
                                        Burnley to see how a plain piece of steel is turned into a work of art.

           Tuesday 7 October                 - Autumn Lecture by Geoff Taylor “Taylor’s Canal Boatyard”
                                                                                                           - see notices nearer the time

                Thousands visit the Cathedral for the BBC Antiques Roadshow

Many of us at the Cathedral - Friends, Congregation and Staff - are     heirlooms, household treasures and car boot bargains for
familiar with BBC visits for Songs of Praise, Choral Evensong and       inspection by the experts. For much of the day there were long
other special services or concerts, but the Antiques Roadshow (see      queues that stretched from the BBC Reception Desk at the back
details opposite) was a different experience. As usual, BBC             of the Nave, up and back down the north aisle, round three
technicians installed their lighting, wiring, microphones and other     sides of the cloisters and outside into St Werburgh Street.
equipment, and outside the building in St Werburgh Street there         As Stewards we had a very busy but interesting day supporting
was an array of recording vans and mobile generators. However,          the large BBC team in various ways including controlling the
this time, not only the Nave but also the Cloisters, Cloister Room,     visitors, liaising with the experts and keeping them well
Chapter House and Vestibule were all used by the BBC.                   supplied with refreshments. The event was surprisingly
Prior to the event most of the Cathedral staff (Estate Team,            informal and for those bringing objects for valuation it involved
Vergers, Refectory, and many in the Office) helped in the               waiting for up to three hours. However, everyone was
complicated arrangements and setting up of the Roadshow. This           incredibly patient and the seeming chaos of multiple queues at
included removing (and subsequent replacing) all the chairs from        the tables of the experts worked very well.
the Nave and its side aisles for the first time since the floor was                                                     Richard Towndrow
replaced in 1997. Numerous interview tables with Antiques
Roadshow backdrops were arranged around the Nave and many
other “backstage” arrangements were needed for production,
lighting, filming, security and safety, as well as catering
arrangements for the many BBC staff, stewards, police, security
staff and the general public.
On the day itself, the Cathedral’s own staff were joined all day by
30 sidesmen, welcomers and other volunteers who helped the
BBC with running the event and managing the thousands of
people who, after waiting for several hours in the main queue, had
to be split into the appropriate specialist queues in the Nave for
each of the 20 or more antiques experts. Everyone got to see an
expert. Members of the public who were selected for
interview/filming were asked to attend for “make up” in the
Chapter House and then wait there until an interview with the
relevant specialist could be slotted into a very full day of filming.               Fiona Bruce in a filmed discussion with the
Some of Britain’s leading antiques and fine arts specialists were                        Vice Dean, Canon Trevor Dennis
on hand to offer free advice and valuations to visitors, who had
been invited to raid their attics and bring along their family
          Fiona Bruce’s First Roadshow                                       Comments on the Antiques Roadshow
The BBC recorded the first programme of the 31st series of                After a very busy day, Simon Shaw, the BBC series
the Antiques Roadshow in the Cathedral on Thursday, 3rd                   editor of the Antiques Roadshow said:
April. The last time the Roadshow visited Chester was in                  “We couldn’t have hoped for a better location in which to
1986, although they were in Queensferry in 1991.                          start a brand new series of the Antiques Roadshow.
The new series, to be shown in the autumn, will be presented              Chester Cathedral will prove the most exquisite backdrop
by Fiona Bruce (the Ten O’Clock News presenter) and she                   for our viewers and, with around 2,500 visitors patiently
was involved in various film recordings during the day. When              queuing to see our team of experts, we’ve been assured
appointed to take over from Michael Aspel she said:                       a rich day indeed.
‘Presenting the Antiques Roadshow is, for me, one of those                Dealing with such a large attendance could have been
rare and very lucky coincidences in television when you get to            problematic, but the team from the Cathedral who helped
work on a show that you already love to watch. Exploring the              steward the event couldn’t have been more efficient and
human story behind every object is what makes Antiques                    helpful. We hope the Cathedral team have enjoyed their
Roadshow so fascinating. And everyone loves the agony and                 day and may welcome more visitors to this magnificent
ecstasy of the “what's it worth?” moment. The AR isn't just               building as a result.”
about antiques – it is history, beauty and drama all wrapped              Cathedral Chief Executive, Annette Moor, in a letter
up in one.’                                                               to staff and volunteers wrote:
                                                                          “The meticulous planning of the event in conjunction with
                                                                          the BBC by the commercial and operational teams, both
                                                                          staff and volunteers, stands us proud, and the Cathedral
                                                                          looked stunning.
                                                                          The Antiques Roadshow is a television production which
                                                                          has 6 million viewers in the UK and is also broadcast all
                                                                          around the world to key audiences in Australia and the
                                                                          United States plus on the BBC international services.
                                                                          The programme from Chester Cathedral is likely to be
                                                                          broadcast in the autumn and will probably be spread
                                                                          over two shows - publicity of that sort is as priceless as
                                                                          many of yesterday's visitors hoped their possessions
                                                                          might have been!”

Photographs in the Cloisters of the Antiques Road Show Experts

                              Progress with Gardening Work in the Cloister Garth

Last autumn Philip Hunt and Cathedral gardener Peter Williams cut
out the patterns shown above, planted a wide range of spring bulbs
(assisted by Barclays bank staff), and then replaced the turf. Since
early December flowers have bloomed successively in the lawn and
in the beds around the cloister walls.
New specially commissioned oak benches are being made so that this
quiet garden in the centre of Chester can be enjoyed by locals and          Photograph taken last autumn of the new Metasequoia tree in the
visitors. A corner bench will be donated by the Friends, and six other        Garth, and some pictures taken in recent months of spring
benches are to be funded by a memorial appeal. (see enclosed leaflet).              flowers following the planting of bulbs in 2007.

                                                                                           Concerts at the Cathedral
                                                                            Each year the Cathedral is used as a venue for 30 – 40 concerts –
                                                                            almost one a week! While some are organised by professional
                                                                            organisations (such as the BBC Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool
                                                                            Philharmonic Orchestra and Manchester Camerata), most are
                                                                            staged by voluntary societies or by our own Music Department or
                                                                            Commercial Directorate. Voluntary groups include: Chester Music
                                                                            Society; Chester Philharmonic Orchestra; City of Chester Male
                                                                            Voice Choir; Chester Bach Singers; Kelsborrow Choir; and
                                                                            Chetham’s Symphony Orchestra.
                                                                            Between them the societies cover a range of orchestral, choral and
                                                                            contemporary music, but they have many things in common. Each
                                                                            has no more than a handful of active volunteer members working
                                                                            on productions for much of the year. All have a “rank and file”
                                                                            membership who share a common interest in an area of the musical
                                                                            repertoire. Many performers have partners who are prepared to
  Prom Praise 2005 – Farndon Brass Band, Cathedral Choir, Chester           give up time to advertise or sell tickets or to be a steward.
          Ladies Choir, City of Chester Male Voice Choir,
                    Jeremy Taylor and Nick Fry.                             In whatever way concerts are promoted, each aspect of the
                                                                            production needs careful attention to detail to ensure success.
                     Kneeler Exhibition                                     Experienced Cathedral staff are able to help organisers plan the use
Made for the 900th Anniversary of our Ancient Cathedral in 1992 the         of space and access for instruments and increasingly complex
621 Kneelers in the nave now seem to be hidden away. However,               equipment. The Cathedral will be involved with publicity through
worshippers using them see the many unique designs worked in                a range of media for every concert, sometimes as the promoter of a
bright colours which have well stood the test of time. Recently the         particular event. We are now able to print tickets and sell them
Chester Branch of the Decorative and Fine Arts Society (NADFAS)             through the Cathedral Shop, a service which has proved popular
were approached by the instigator of the 1990 Kneeler project, Mrs.         with organisers and which has increased attendance significantly.
Dorothy Colley, for their help in producing a catalogue of these            The operations team are able to build staging to a variety of
kneelers. Cataloguing and photographing the kneelers was much               designs to accommodate a chorus of up to 200, or orchestras of
needed mainly because anyone with a particular interest in a kneeler        nearly 100 players. The refectory staff and Choir Support Group
could not find it in the Cathedral as, with the chairs, they are            have experience in providing a variety of catering linked with
inevitably moved from place to place.                                       events. This may be a glass of wine or cup of tea for several
Fortunately a floppy disk came to light on which was recorded all the       hundreds to be served in an interval of 15 minutes, or a more
information required. This had been made in 1992 and was due to the         complex reception for invited guests. A significant percentage of
foresight of one of the original committee members, Ann Marie               the revenue earned in the Cloister Room and Chapter House is in
Dickinson, who kept the records. Chester NADFAS working party               conjunction with concerts in the Nave. Before a concert, Cathedral
now had all the information it required. They worked through the            staff train volunteer stewards how to evacuate the building and to
nave and all parts of the Cathedral recording, photographing and            care for the audience in less dramatic ways!
cleaning every kneeler. Three catalogues have now been produced             Many of the Friends of Chester Cathedral actively support this
giving the opportunity for everyone to see a digital photograph of          important part of our work as performers, organisers, stewards or
any particular kneeler with all the information as to the sponsor,          regular members of the audience. There is, however, always an
designer and stitcher.                                                      opportunity for others to become involved. The Cathedral Choir
The workmanship and the descriptive and colourful designs are truly         and the Cathedral Nave Choir have produced several fine concerts
impressive and a credit to the whole of the Diocese whose Churches          recently. Our music department is enjoying success in exploring
responded to the 1992 project in a positive way and to all the              the use of the Song School for small scale musical evenings. We
organisations in Chester whose representations are unique in the            would like to plan more concerts similar to the highly successful
Cathedral.                                                                  Carlo Curley evening supported by the Friends. In order to develop
The historical value of the kneelers is illustrated by the one made         this aspect of the Cathedral’s work we will first need to increase
with the design for the Cheshire Regiment which no longer exists.           the numbers and range of tasks which can be covered by
The Civic Offices of the City of Chester are also represented and in        volunteers linked to the Cathedral. If you wish to be more involved
these changing times these may also disappear sometime in the               please have a word with Nick Fry or myself – or just buy a ticket
future. Sadly some Churches have closed but their past existence is         for the next concert!
recorded by the kneeler which they had donated. The kneelers are                                                    Ian Atkinson – Events Manager
truly a unique historical record which illustrates the vibrancy and life
of the Diocese and its Churches and the City with its many                  Wartime Memories of Chester & District Music Society
Organisations and the positive responses made to participate in the
                                                                            Early in the Second World War, I joined the Society whilst in my teens. At
Kneeler Project.
                                                                            that time it was known as the Bach Choir, and was conducted by Mr.
At the recent exhibition, many visitors appreciated the availability of     Malcolm Boyle, the Cathedral organist.
the catalogues and some were delighted to learn that a particular           Owing to the risk of air-raids, we met in the old Choir School surrounded
kneeler was still in the Cathedral. Some were willing to make more          by sandbags. Lights were dimmed, and there was little heating. My
but it was explained to them that the Cathedral has more than               mother, aunt, sister and I lived in Rock Ferry; therefore we were faced
sufficient for its needs. Our special thanks go to the Dean and             either with a cold, dim bus, or a bracing cycle ride. We sang Bach's
Chapter, and all those at Chester Cathedral who made it possible for        Christmas Oratorio and St. Matthew Passion each year, as well as shorter
the catalogues to be produced and exhibited.                                works such as Dyson's "Canterbury Pilgrims". We were often
                                                                            accompanied by the late Dr. George Guest, then assisting on the organ.
 See back page for photographs of a few of the kneelers                     He arrived late one evening as we were singing from the Christmas
Anyone requiring information or a photograph from the catalogues            Oratorio “O come thou long expected guest”.
please contact Norah Edwards on 01244 679054                                                                                         Mary Formstone

          Minutes of the Friends 2007 AGM                                                                               Cathedral Report:
           held on Sunday 17 June in the Chapter House                                                                   The Dean and Vice-Dean
                                                                                                                        reported on the past year in the
The Register was signed by 43 Friends. Apologies were received from: The
Bishop of Chester, Emily Pitt, Margaret Caven, Mr & Mrs J Davies, Mr &
Mrs P Byatt, Mr & Mrs P Meredith, James Gillespie, Kevin Coghlan.                                                        The Dean spoke about giving
The Meeting opened with prayer.                                                                                         the Cathedral a medical check
                                                                                                                        up; the ‘heart’ is the liturgy
Remembrance of Friends: A minute’s silence was observed in memory of
Friends who had died in the past year. It was pointed out that Mr Bill                                                  and spiritual life of the
Thomas should be included in the list.                                                                                  Cathedral and he felt able to
Minutes of the 2006 AGM: A small correction was made to the 2006 AGM
                                                                                                                        declare a full bill of health in
Minutes regarding a letter from Mrs Jean Warne concerning an exhibition in                                              this respect. The ‘lungs’ are
the Refectory. The Minutes were then signed as a true record of that meeting.                                           the musicians and he spoke of
Matters arising: There were no matters arising.                                   the high standards attained by the Music Department. The ‘brain’
                                                                                  is represented by Education and he spoke about the appointment of
The Council Report as previously published in the Newsletter was adopted
and approved by the Meeting.
                                                                                  Claire Chatterton as the part time education officer and that
                                                                                  fundraising is taking place in order to make a full time position.
Hon Treasurer’s Report and financial details were previously published in
                                                                                  The community of the Cathedral, including the volunteers and staff
the Newsletter.
                                                                                  are the ‘muscles’, and he spoke of new appointments to achieve the
The Hon. Treasurer thanked Barclays Bank for their donations associated           cathedral’s mission – Keith Skempton as the Director of
with the Plant Sale and also mentioned their ongoing donation of bulbs in the
                                                                                  Operations with responsibility for insurance, safety, events, the
Garth. Advertisements in the Newsletter are helping to keep the cost of
publishing the Newsletters down, but the number of such advertisements            estate and volunteers. Jo Sykes has also been appointed as the
would be kept relatively low.                                                     Commercial Director to ensure the commercial viability of events.
The Auditor’s Report and accounts for 2006 were accepted and Benjamin
                                                                                  Jo will be leaving later in the year and will be replaced by a new
Morris was re-appointed as the Hon Auditor. The motion was proposed by            candidate. A Personnel Officer has been appointed to ensure that
Bill Hardman, seconded by Colin Walker and agreed by the Meeting. Mr              the Cathedral complies with the complexities of employment law.
Morris was formally thanked for his work.                                         and new managers have taken over the shop and the refectory.
Subscriptions: The level of subscriptions had not been increased for 11           The bones of the Cathedral are the financial resources and there are
years and it was felt that it was time for an increase. The following levels      still problems in this area; something of a skeleton in the cupboard!
were proposed: £15.00 for Individuals and £20.00 for Joint membership. The        A Property Advisory Group has been formed to look at properties
motion to adopt these levels of subscription was proposed by the Hon              and the estate (but not the Cathedral itself) with a view to forming
Treasurer, seconded by Ann Le Brocq and approved by the Meeting. The
                                                                                  a long term plan for the development of the Estate over 10 years. It
new subscriptions will be communicated to Friends in the Autumn.
                                                                                  is envisaged that two Foundations will be created, one for music
Hon Membership Secretary’s Report: The income from subscriptions                  and the other for education. Bishop Alan Chesters has delivered an
increases every year and a significant number give more than the minimum
                                                                                  Education Report and his recommendations are presently being
requested subscription. The overall membership numbers have decreased,
but this is due to a purge of the membership roll in order to correct a number    worked through. Music costs approximately £180,000 p.a. and
of anomalies. New applications are still increasing gradually. Leaflets have      about £5 million is required.
been put out at some major services which has resulted in a small number of       The Architect’s Quinquennial Report was delivered two years ago
new members, although not as many as before; the forthcoming organ                and the Cathedral is looking at ways of funding his
concert will be used as a recruiting opportunity.                                 recommendations. One urgent project is the renewing of the roof
Mrs Lavinia Whitfield asked if it was possible to encourage more parishes to      over the Library adjoining the Chapel of St Anselm and this has
become Link members and it was emphasised that the Friends efforts must           been funded by the Companions of St Anselm.
tie in with overall Cathedral initiatives. Mr Bill Hardman suggested that
individuals might visit parishes to encourage membership.                         The Dean then handed over to Canon Trevor Dennis to speak
                                                                                  about the Library refurbishment and the Garth renovations. Canon
Election of Officers:
                                                                                  Dennis said that the Friends made the ‘impossible’ into the
Nicholas Fry was re-elected as Hon. Secretary, proposed by Liz Hardman            ‘possible’. He thanked Philip Hunt for all his work on the
and seconded by Rosemary Little. Richard Towndrow was re-elected as Hon
                                                                                  replanting of the Garth. He had sourced a number of hard-to-find
Treasurer, proposed by Bill Hardman and seconded by Derek Jackson. Derek
Jackson was re-elected as Hon Membership Secretary, proposed by Randal            plants and used his considerable expertise in the design and
Hibbert, and seconded by Janet Walker.                                            planting of the garden. However, this was only possible in the first
Election of Members to the Council: Lynn Barritt and Claire Chatterton            place with the help of the Friends who were financing the changes.
were elected unopposed as Members of the Council.                                 Similarly with the Library; it was a grant from the Friends to cover
                                                                                  the cost of re-decoration which had enabled the work to go ahead.
Any Other Business: Bill Hardman said that the Constitution should be
checked with the Charity Commissioners to ensure that we comply with              The Meeting closed with the Grace.
current regulations.
It was requested that some Friends’ events should take place at weekends so
that anyone in work would be able to attend.

                                                          Chapter House Window
 The east window of the Chapter House was installed in 1872 as a memorial to Dean Anson (1839–1867). It
 shows the history of St.Werburgh’s Church as Anglo-Saxon Minster, Benedictine Abbey and Cathedral.
 The window was showing signs of serious decay due to age and 135 years of weathering. Stained glass is
 made up from a number of elements – small sections of coloured, textured glass, held within a lead network
 and then secured as a panel within a timber, metal or stone and mortar framework. Lead is by nature soft,
 malleable and easily soldered. This means that it can also sag easily and lose its structural role. Over time,
 the waterproofing compounds used to seal a structure go hard, crack, and fall out, leaving the lead and
 glass exposed to water damage.
 The window was removed (and boarded up - see photo) early this year and taken to the workshops of Linley
 Glass where the actual restoration work can be viewed online

               Secretary’s Report – June 2008                                     ‘A Day in the Life of a Cathedral Guide’
Looking back to last year’s Report is a useful exercise since it                  (An excerpt from an article in the May Cathedral News)
enables us to ensure that we’re keeping our promises! The Friends’
contributions are not hidden away – on the contrary, they are visible
to all. The June 2006 Report described the new planting in the
Cloister Garth and we are now beginning to see the benefits of Phil
Hunt’s dedication, as new plants mature and flower, particularly the
spring bulbs; the next step will be to provide new benches to allow
visitors to sit and take time to appreciate the peace and tranquillity of
the garden. The planting around the Slype has also matured and the
whole area has been greatly improved. Last year’s Plant Sale
(excluding donations from Barclay’s Bank) raised over £3,000 for
the Flowers & Garden fund and the provision of special flowers at
Easter and other times of the year continues to be very popular.
The 2006 Report also mentioned the re-opening of the Library and a
number of groups have been welcomed; the new blinds have been
fitted and the Library is now a fitting and appropriate place for the
preservation of the Cathedral’s wonderful collection of books. The
cassock albs which the Friends bought for the Servers are in use
every Sunday and at special services on Saint’s days during the                 Connie Watson , Bernice Meredith, and Claire Chatterton
week, the new purple vestments have been completed and new               It is 9.30 am and I am one of two guides standing and chatting
Welcomers’ gowns will soon appear as well as robes for the Nave          together with Claire Chatterton, the Education Officer, at the
Choir. We also have a three year programme to supply protective          Visitors entrance of the Cathedral as we await the arrival of a
grilles for those stained glass windows most at risk.                    primary school. A familiar and enjoyable pattern to me, except
          On the social side, a number of events have taken place. The   today I am filled with a slight degree of apprehension. Today, we
outing to Hereford Cathedral (and the Dean of Hereford’s garden!)        are introducing a new element into our tours for children; we are to
was enjoyed by everyone; our outings are very popular and the 2008       tell the story of St Werburgh using puppets! A cursory practise
Spring Outing to Houghton Tower and Blackburn Cathedral sold out         beforehand had not quite calmed my nerves, but no more time for
in a matter of days!                                                     thinking about it as the children arrive. We split the school into
The Autumn Lecture was given by Mr Ian Dunn, who spoke about             manageable groups and off we go. The excitement and hush is
the restoration and development of Chester Cathedral from the 16 th to   palpable as my group enter the Nave - for many children, this will
the 21st centuries. In March, the Friends supported a concert by the     be their first visit to a place of worship, and once again I am
international organist, Carlo Curley; this was the first time the        sharply reminded of how essential the work of our Education
Friends had undertaken to provide help of this sort, but the event       Department is! It’s marvellous to see the wonder and awe on faces
proved to be exceptionally popular; in fact, extra seats had to be put   as they soak up the beauty and majesty of the Cathedral.
out at the last minute for the capacity audience! The concert itself     We reach St Werburgh’s Chapel and, much to my relief, the
was splendid and the view of the organ loft was relayed onto a big       puppets are an instant hit and a great success. By now it is nearly
screen thus enabling everyone to enjoy Carlo’s playing; so for once,     time for the children to have their lunch, and we finish the tour by
the contribution of the Friends was heard as well as seen!               gathering together to light a candle and say a prayer. It is a
                                                                Nick Fry humbling moment to see young children, of every denomination,
                                                                         eyes closed, heads bowed, hands joined together in prayer - blessed
                                                                         are the pure in heart.
          Membership Secretary’s Report 2007-8                                                                                   Bernice Meredith
With the recent increase in subscriptions it was necessary to contact
all members of the association. This allowed us to rationalise our                                        Obituary
databases and delete members and Link Parishes who did not wish to                      We remember with sadness, but with gratitude,
                                                                                            the lives of recently deceased Friends
renew their membership. We were also notified of names of
members who had died and where we had not previously been                        Mr.T.Anson          Mrs.D.Lorenz       Mrs.M.Pattinson
notified. This explains the drop in numbers of Life Members and                  Mr.J.Edkins         Mr.B.Lott          Mr.M.Suthers
Link Parishes. However, in spite of this, the total membership has               Mr.A.Knowles        Dr.L.Martin        Mr.C.Walker
                                                                                 Mrs.E.Knowles       Mrs.B.Morris       Mrs.L.Widdowson
                                                         Derek Jackson          If we have omitted any names from the list we extend our sincerest
                                                                                    apologies and would ask that we receive appropriate details.

                                                     Total Membership: 868 (835)
                 Ordinary Members: 703 (653)                       Life Members: 106 (119)               Link Parishes     59 (63)

                                        New Members ( April 2007 – March 2008) 52 (47)
                 Ms. H.L.Allen             Mr. J.Earis             Mr. P. Hunt              Mrs. D.Mairs            Miss E Roberts
                 Miss B.E. Begbie          Mrs. A.Earis            Mrs. H. Johnson          Mr. R.McConnell         Mrs. B.Rutter
                 Mrs. M.J.Bolton           Mrs. E. E. Gamon        Mr. R. Jones             Mr. J. Oldham           Mrs. P Steel
                 Mrs. M. Bottomley         Miss S Gamon            Mrs. L.Jones             Mr. A. Oldman           Mrs. C Taylor
                 Mrs. M.Capner             Mr. P J. Garner         Mrs. J. Kenworthy        Mrs. A. Oldman          Revd. M.Tompkins
                 Mr. S.C. Clark            Revd. S.Gilbert         Mr. C. Kirk              Mr. M Palmer            Mrs. W.Tompkins
                 Mrs. J.Clark              Mrs. S.Gilbert          Mrs. Y.Kirk              Ms. A.Palmer            Miss H.Trainer
                 Mr. H.R.Coppack           Miss A Hamilton         Mrs. H. Lawson           Mrs. F.Pearson          Miss K.Wood
                 Miss S. Cross             Prof. Peter Hennock     Miss J.Lock              Mrs. M. Peel
                 Mr. A. Davidson           Mr. D Hingston          Mr. A Macharaju          Dr. A Rawling
                 Mrs. R.Davidson           Mrs. S.Hingston         Mr. D. Mairs             Mrs. R.Rawling

                                                                       - -
                                                  Financial Report for 2007
The Friends had another successful year                                Financial Summary 2002 - 2007
with gross income up 7% on the previous                         Full copies of the audited 2007 accounts are included separately
year,    though      subscription     income   INCOME (£)                             2002   2003   2004   2005   2006                   2007
(including the Gift Aid refund) at £10,704     Subscriptions received                7,178 7,221 7,641 8,862 9,172                      8,807
was marginally down. Higher 2008               Tax Refund (Gift Aid)                 1,124    977 1,162 1,492 1,768                     1,898
subscriptions (last raised 11 years ago)       Donations for Flowers                     -      -      - 2,968 1,263                    2,371
should enable us to continue to
                                               Plant Sale (Craft Sale 2002 & 2003)   2,049 3,484 3,363 3,428 3,455                      3,232
progressively increase the funds available
for grants to the Cathedral.                   Functions & Outings                     310    505    827    921    859                     70
High interest rates and the surplus from the   Friends Scarves & Ties                  517    468      -      -      -                      -
previous year helped 2007 investment           Income excl. interest, donations etc.11,178 12,655 12,993 17,671 16,517                 16,378
income to increase 30% to £5,628 whilst        Interest received                     4,220 3,210 3,961 4,048 4,287                      5,628
donations at £4,363 (including £2,250          Donations & Legacies                  1,262 2,198 3,179 2,431 3,836                      4,364
from Barclays) were up 14%. Barclays           TOTAL INCOME                         16,660 18,063 20,133 24,150 24,640                 26,370
also paid for £500 worth of bulbs (not
                                               EXPENDITURE (£)
included in our accounts) which staff from
the branch helped to plant in the Cloister     Refurbishment of Cloister Room            -      -      - 9,095       -                      -
Garth. Other “Flowers and Gardens”             Library improvements                  2,000      -      -      - 2,000                       -
income was £5,603, made up of £3,232           Nave Curtains (for SW and W Doors) 2,697         -      -      -      -                      -
from the Plant Sale and £2,371 from            Song School (Rose Window & Cross) 34,000         -      -      -      -                      -
individual donations by members of the         Window Grills / Security (CCTV (2004) 3,112      - 16,200      -      -                  8,000
Friends and the Congregation for the           Cathedral Flowers                     1,000 1,000 3,000 4,124 3,115                      3,209
purchase      of    flower     arrangements,
                                               Gardens, Benches, Paths etc               - 1,000     809 1,600     500                  4,154
memorials etc.
                                               Music - Choir                         1,000 1,000 1,000        -      -                      -
Friends Grants to the Cathedral during the
past year totalled £18,122 (see table) of               - Song School Organ Overhaul     -      -      - 1,544       -                      -
which £7,363 was from our “Flowers and         UHV Microphones                           -      - 3,626       -      -                      -
Gardens” funds. We also gave an                Vestments                               835      -    711      -    525                    168
undertaking to the Chapter that in addition    Servers Cassock Albs                             -      -      -      -                  1,561
to the 2007 grant of £8,000 for the            Welcomers’ Gowns                          -      -      -      -      -                    780
protection of stained glass windows, we
                                               Miscellaneous Small Grants                -      -    300    225      -                    250
will make similar sums available in 2008
and again in 2009.                             Total Grants                         44,644 3,000 25,646 16,589 6,240                   18,122
                                               Operating expenses*                   3,116 1,716   3,022 3,035 3,538                    3,676
There was an overall surplus for the year
of £4,572 and this has been added to our       TOTAL EXPENDITURE                    47,760 4,716 28,668 19,624 9,778                   21,798
reserves. Our total assets at the end of the
year stood at £122,683 of which about          SURPLUS / ( - ) DEFICIT                  -31,100 13,347         -8,535   4,525 14,862    4,572
£100,000 is in investment accounts.
                                               TOTAL NET ASSETS                          93,912 107,259 98,723 103,249 118,111 122,683
                                                                                * Newsletters twice p.a. from 2004.
     Richard Towndrow (Hon. Treasurer)

                                                                                    2008 Grants to Cathedral made to end April
                       Flower Donations
 Liz Hardman and the Flower Arrangers, as well as the Cathedral           Protective Window Blinds for Cathedral Library       £2,000
 and the Friends, wish to thank those who made donations for              Protection of Stained Glass (2 of three payments)    £8,000
 Easter Lilies, and also to thank all those who have made such            Final payment for Servers Cassock Albs                  £76
 generous flower donations during the past year.

       Leaflets for Flower Donations or Memorial Arrangements                    2008 Grants to Cathedral approved to end April
                 are available from the Cathedral Office
                                                                          Corner Bench in Garth                                 £1,500
      Enquiries to: Mrs Liz Hardman (Tel: 07946396820) or
              c/o The Friends of Chester Cathedral,                       New Robes for Nave Choir                              £3,650
               12 Abbey Square, Chester CH1 2HU                           Monthly Flowers in the Cathedral                 as required

                               The Friends of Chester Cathedral                     Registered Charity No. 501740
                     12 Abbey Square, Chester CH1 2HU Telephone: 01244 324756 email: fry@chestercathedral . com
   Patron: HRH The Prince of Wales              President: The Lord Bishop of Chester
   Vice Presidents: Mr.W.A.Bromley Davenport (Lord Lieutenant for Cheshire); Alderman Mrs.R.F.McConnell
   Chairman: The Dean of Chester                Hon. Secretary: Mr N.J.Fry        Hon. Membership Secretary: Mr D.N.Jackson
   Hon. Treasurer: Mr R.F.R.Towndrow            Newsletter Editors: Mr R.F.R.Towndrow, Mr J.Gillespie and Mr K.D.Ball
   Hon. Auditors: Benjamin Morris & Co          Chapter Representative: The Revd Canon Dr T.J.Dennis (Vice Dean)
           Council Members: Mrs R.A.Little; Mr J.Gillespie; Mr C.J Jones; Mrs E.A.LeBrocq; Mrs M.D.Caven; Mr K.D.Ball;
                               Mr R.J.Hibbert; Mr R.M.Miln; Mrs Lynn Barritt and Ms Claire Chatterton.

                                                                    - -
 Roof of St Anselm's Chapel Repaired                                            Modern Russian Ikons
                             The roof of the 12th century      In our last newsletter, the article about the Cathedral trip last
                             Chapel of St Anselm has           summer to northern Russia referred to an ikon workshop in the
                             been repaired in recent           remote village of Kondopoga. They produce Orthodox ikons in the
                             months.      Rainwater     had    same style as those of the 13th century Novgorod School and
                             penetrated the roof and           photographs of two examples of them are shown below.
                             threatened to damage the
                             magnificent 16th century
                             plaster ceiling of the Chapel.
                              The Companions of St
                             Anselm made a generous
                             contribution to the cost of the

                             The photo (left) shows work in
                             progress and the finished roof
                                   is shown below.

                                                                                Plant Sale - May 2008

                          Protective Blinds for                       Some of the many helpers preparing for the Plant Sale
                         the Cathedral Library
                                                               The Friends Council wish to thank Caroline Dennis and her team
                         Protective blinds have been fitted    of helpers as well as all those who contributed in many other ways
                         in the Cathedral Library following    to this year’s Plant Sale in the cloisters on 2nd and 3rd of May. The
                         a grant of £2,000 from the            sale raised over £2,800 towards the cost of flowers and gardens in
                         Friends.                              and around the Cathedral.
                                                               A wide range of flowers and plants were generously donated by
                                                               local Nurseries, Friends, Congregation and others, and as usual a
                                                               wide selection of cakes and jams were available on the Saturday.

Some kneelers made in 1992 by Cathedral groups – over 600 more were produced by parishes and others in the Diocese

                                                         - 12 -

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