Category Archives: News Releases

A Fruitful Apple Day

On 11th October St Mark’s Church in Upper Hale, Farnham hosted its first Community Apple Day. About fifty people, aged 0 to 70, came with bags of apples to be juiced and enjoyed apple pancakes, apple bobbing, apple juice and even singing apple-themed songs. The remaining fruit from the eleven trees in the community orchard was picked and juiced. The trees were planted by community groups last December

The Reverend Lesley Crawley, a priest at the church said, “It was such a lovely event; the sun shone, the apple juice was delicious, the children played and everyone had a good time. I owe a great debt of gratitude to John Ely who manned the juicer for two hours solid and has been such a supporter of all we have done in the churchyard at St Mark’s.”

Paul Sowden, who oversees the community orchard and wildflower garden said, “This event was a huge success, the atmosphere was brilliant and it brought the community together. We will definitely run this again next year and my prediction is that it will grow and grow.”

A concert to save our pipe organ ‘Emily’

St Mark’s Church, Upper Hale will be hosting a superb musical evening’s entertainment on November 14th at 7.30pm. This includes an organ recital by Stephen Lacey resident organist and director of music at St. Andrew’s Church Farnham, a choral repertoire by the Sedici with musical director Valerie Hoppe MBE and a performance from the Sedici recorder consort. There will also be a range of readings by a wide variety of authors from Noel Coward to Conan Doyle and J.M.Barrie to Kipling, all read by Rosemary Wisbey. Refreshments will be available during the interval.

The Reverend Lesley Crawley, a priest at St Mark’s said, “Emily is a beautiful Edwardian pipe organ that is just over 100 years old. She is referred to as ‘Emily’ after her benefactor – Emily Mangles. Sadly, she has been used very rarely over the past three years because after a century of service she is in need of a complete overhaul. The ‘action’ which links the keys to the pipes has become sluggish, the leatherwork is failing and the wind noise from the leaking wind trunks is detracting from her beautiful tone. The time has come for us to restore her.”

She continued, “There is no charge for this wonderful evening of entertainment but a retiring collection will be taken in aid of our pipe organ ‘Emily’. Please put the date in your diary and come along with all your friends.”

Praying with our feet and voices for the UN climate talks in Paris

At the end of November, world leaders will meet at the UN climate talks in Paris. It’s a crucial moment, as negotiators from more than 190 nations will gather to discuss a new global agreement on climate change aimed at limiting greenhouse gas emissions from 2020 when current commitments run out.

The Church of England, Christian Aid, CAFOD and Tearfund have come together to organise a Pilgrimage2Paris ahead of the UN talks. The pilgrimage will start in London on 13th November and arrive in Paris on November 27. Inspired by their faith, pilgrims from across the UK will come together to call on world leaders to agree a fair, ambitious and binding climate change deal in Paris.

Revd Lesley Crawley, who is helping to organise the Diocese’s response to the climate talks said, “We have two great opportunities to pray for all involved in these crucial climate talks. On the evening of the 13th November, the pilgrims will be in our diocese, sleeping in the churches in Banstead before heading off for Crawley the following morning. Everyone is welcome to join them. You can simply cheer the pilgrims on, or walk with them some of the way – there will be stopping off points for coffee, lunch and tea. In addition, we are having a prayer vigil on November 28 at Guildford Cathedral from 4-5pm. This will be led by Bishop Andrew and will involve prayer stations throughout the cathedral. We will be joining our prayers with the prayers of thousands of others, of many faiths and across many nations.”

Anyone wishing to join the pilgrimage (for the Banstead–Crawley leg or more) can do so by signing up on the website Please sign up even if you are walking only part of the route. To find out more know and to liaise about timings contact Lesley Crawley on 01252 820537 or

St Mark’s is hosting its first ‘Apple Day’

Celebrate the first fruits of the Hale community orchard from 10:00 until 11:00am on 11th October at St Mark’s Church, Upper Hale. The eleven trees in the orchard were each adopted by different community groups in Hale and have all thrived since they were planted in December.

The Reverend Lesley Crawley, a priest at the church explained, “We are delighted that our community orchard is bearing fruit and so we decided to celebrate! We will be having some entertainment including apple tasting and apple-y music and possibly dance. If that isn’t enough apply-ness there will be pancakes with apple filling to eat! There will be no religious element to the apple hour so come along if you have any faith or none and join in the fun. Afterwards, you are welcome to stay for the 11am service if you wish, there is also a bring-and-share lunch afterwards.”

John Ely, who has overseen the planting of the trees said, “We will bring a juicer, so if you would like to turn your apples into juice then bring apples that are in good condition, washed and picked from the tree along with clean two litre plastic milk cartons including the lid to put the juice in.”

Harvest Festival – a time to share

Many churches have a tradition of people bringing the ‘fruits of creation’ to the altar at the Harvest Festival service, thanking God for them and then distributing them to those who need them. In the Parish of Badshot Lea and Hale, the churches of St John’s, Hale, St Mark’s, Upper Hale and St George’s, Badshot Lea will be collecting food for the local Foodbank on 4th October at the Harvest Services which are 9:30am, 10am and 11am respectively.

The Reverend Lesley Crawley said, “Please come along and sing your favourite harvest songs and, if possible, bring some food for those who don’t have enough. We will also be taking a collection at the end of the service at the door for the Syrian refugees.”

The Foodbank are particularly in need of tinned meat, instant mash, tinned Sponge Puddings, powdered milk, chocolate, Long Life fruit juice, tinned fruit, biscuits, snack bars, tinned rice pudding, UHT Milk, sugar, tinned vegetables, tinned fish and toiletries.

Photo accreditation: Georgie Fry

Hale rocked to the sound of the Parish Fete

The annual Fete of the Parish of Badshot Lea and Hale went with a swing this year as ‘60s music rocked the Rectory garden. New this year was the DJ Jim Flanagan who had stall holders and customers dancing and singing, interspersed with some lively banter. Over £2000 was made to continue the community outreach work of the parish.

The Reverend Lesley Crawley said, “It was brilliant fun and a lovely community day. It was also an important fundraising event for our community work. We do work in the parish in many and varied ways; we care for those who are alone or have been bereaved, we have a Families Worker for mums and dads who need some support, we have clergy and lay people for those who need a listening ear. There are too many volunteers and community groups to list and they couldn’t continue their work without this fundraising.”

She continued, “I’m so thankful to Bill and Mavis Leach and their team for running the fete over the last few years. I’m also thankful that Maxine Everitt will run the fete next year. The DJ is already booked – I suspect he’ll be even more audacious – I can’t wait!”

Photo is of Maxine Everitt, one of the churchwardens at St George’s Church, Badshot Lea, with “Lucy” the St George’s Dragon. Photo accreditation – Georgie Fry

Google Mapping St John’s Churchyard

Information about who is buried in the churchyard at St John’s, Hale, is coming to light and is being published online for the first time thanks to work by the Parish of Badshot Lea and Hale. Among those whose graves are now mapped and documented in a churchyard that dates back 175 years are John Henry Knight who built the first petroleum carriage for two people in England, and Bishop Sumner who lived in Farnham Castle and built 200 churches in the area.

However there are still some gaps in the information and the parish is asking for help to fill these.

The Reverend Alan Crawley, Joint Rector, says, “This has been a harder task than you might imagine, but it has reached a point where some information is now available to view on the web. It is far from complete, and may be inaccurate in places, but it is a work in progress and needs someone with time to volunteer to finish the task. Could you help build this up, or make it more accurate? If so, please get in touch.”

He continues, “The tools being used for the mapping of the churchyard are all free and public domain – if anyone would like to document another churchyard or cemetery then I would be happy to talk to them about it.”

You can contact Alan by email – or by calling him on 01252 820537.

The map can be found online or through their website – by choosing from the ‘funerals’ menu at the top.

All the fun of the Fete

The annual fete of the Parish of Badshot Lea and Hale will take place on Saturday 5th Sept, 12 – 4pm at the Rectory – 25 Upper Hale Road. There will be a bouncy slide, games, face painting, barbeque and other delicious refreshments. The stalls will include plants, cakes, bric a brac, accessories, bottle tombola, toiletries, children’s toys and books. The Grand Draw will have many prizes including first and second prizes of £200 and £100.

Please come to the Fete and bring your friends and neighbours, it is a wonderful way to spend the afternoon.

Photo credit – Georgie Fry Photography

Hymn Books free to a good home

St John’s Church in Hale has 200 hymn books to give away. If you would like one just pop in and collect one – the church is open every day from 9:30am to 4:30pm.

The Reverend Lesley Crawley said, “At St John’s we realised that it was time we bought some new hymn books as the version we had was 30 years old and didn’t include the modern hymns we sing. We used to have extra hymns on bits of paper but it was becoming very frustrating. We can’t sell the old hymn books because they are so out of date, but if anyone would like one they are free to a good home!”

Free Mindfulness Course

At St Mark’s Church on Alma Lane in Upper Hale there are already free mindfulness sessions on the first Monday morning of each month. The church is now offering a free Mindfulness Course on Tuesday Evenings, starting on 15th September, which will look at Mindfulness in more detail. The sessions will be run by the Diocesan Health and Well-being Advisor, Suzette Jones, who has much experience in running Mindfulness groups.

Lesley Shatwell, who is a member of the church and who will be helping to run the sessions commented, “Mindfulness is about purposefully paying attention to our experience in the present moment with an attitude of kindly acceptance. Mindfulness practice can help us to feel awake, aware, be present for more of our lives; to choose our actions more wisely; to let go of worries and habits which no longer work for us, and to boost our well-being and compassion for self and others.”

The Reverend Lesley Crawley, a priest in the parish, said, “Each session will focus on a different aspect of Mindfulness, for example Mindful walking or Mindful eating. The course is open to all, regardless of faith. It is based on Mindfulness stress reduction and will take us through how we can use Mindfulness in our everyday lives.”

To qualify for a free place you need to commitment to attend all 8 sessions and a small amount of homework is required. Spaces are limited so please register your interest to:
Communities Engagement Team
Diocesan House, Quarry Street, Guildford, GU1 3XG
tel: 01483 790335