THE FRIENDS OF EFFINGHAM WITH LITTLE BOOKHAM CHURCHES

Purpose

The Friends of All Saints Little Bookham Church and St Lawrence Effingham Church (The Friends) is a secular organisation dedicated to help with the preservation of the fabric of two historic church buildings in the Parish of St Lawrence Effingham and All Saints, Little Bookham.  Each is Grade 2* listed and can trace its history back to early Norman times around 1100. A yew tree adjacent to All Saints has been dated at 1300 years old.

Both buildings are active places of Anglican worship under the jurisdiction of the Diocese of Guildford and under the direct care of the Parochial Church Council. They are utilised fully for weddings and baptisms and the graveyard at All Saints is one of the few still open for burials.  Barnes Wallis, an Effingham resident and of Dambuster bouncing bomb fame, is laid to rest in St Lawrence churchyard. 

The church buildings are used by our local schools and for community uses such as lectures, play groups, music recitals and shortly a ‘farmers market’.  They are significant community assets and require support from the community to ensure their continued active use.  

The Friends exists to share the burden of looking after these buildings and their immediate surrounds.  Many of our members are not church goers.  They join because they value what these buildings do for the community and want to ensure they are passed on to the generations to come as they have been to us by the generations before. 

We raise money from a modest membership fee, legacies and a varied programme of fun social events.  Membership forms and a booklet detailing the history of each church can be downloaded from this site.  Please play your part in keeping these wonderful buildings at the centre of our community either by donations and/or getting involved in attending and helping organising events.

Origin

The inaugural meeting of the Friends of Little Bookham Church was held in January 1993 to provide an opportunity for the local community to participate in the preservation of the ancient church building at the heart of the village. The charitable objects were extended in 2019 to include St Lawrence Effingham following the merger of the two Parishes in 2018.

Membership

Membership of the Friends is by annual subscription (£10 or more and preferably Gift Aided) and new members are always very welcome. In the first year we ask for £20 as a joining fee. As a secular organisation the FLBC is open to all people of any or no religious persuasion but who share a common interest in the conservation of ancient buildings and the village environment. Application to join and support the Friends can be made by downloading the membership form, picking up a form in either of the churches or by contacting the Membership Secretary: Mrs Pat Mills via the Parish Office on 01372 451697 or email to membership.friends@icloud.com

Social Events & Fundraising

The Friends raises funds through its subscription income and its social programme. A varied programme of entertainment is planned to contribute to the life of the community.   Our programme for 2020 is:

14th March – ‘The Spirit of Spain’ – an evening of virtuoso guitar classics by Mark Jennings.  Venue – All Saints Church, Little Bookham at 7.30.  Tickets £12.00 to include refreshments. Call 01372 454273 or 01372 452024.

19th April – ‘The Big Curry Lunch’ – a repeat of the very successful sell out lunch last year at Bookham Tandoori.  Main, side dish, nan and a drink for £15.00.  We take over the restaurant which can accommodate around 45.  Tickets from William Hill 01372 458792.

1st May – Annual General Meeting.  Wine and quiz.  Held in vestry at All Saints Church. Free event.

6th June – Surrey Show Choir – songs from the shows.  A run through of some of the songs this superb amateur choir will be taking to the 2020 Edinburgh Fringe.  Venue Manor House School.  Ticket details published in due course.

4th July – Parish fete held in Effingham.  Display of classic cars and a large range of local stalls and musical entertainment.  Please contact William Hill 01372458792 if interested in running a stall or able to help organise the event.

Other community events later in the year:

Heritage Day

Community Harvest Evening

Farmers Market starting once a month in St Lawrence Church

Local History talk with minced pies and mulled wine

Charitable Expenditure

Since its inception the Friends has raised and expended £100,000+ on the church and churchyard.

Specific projects have ranged from a few hundreds of pounds to tens of thousands.   We help with the costs of tree surgery and grass cutting to making a significant contribution to the reconstruction of a vestry and the extension and landscaping of a graveyard.  We also can use  legacies  to fund in memoriam gifts.

Contact Us

For further information please contact the Parish Office on 01372 451697 or the Chairman William Hill via membership.friends@icloud.com

Registered Charity Number 1048406

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