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Friends of Ashton Parish Church

The church now has four new full sets of sanctuary furnishings, one for each season of the Christian year. The colours are green for Ordinary Time, purple for Lent and Advent, red for Special Saints and Pentecost, and white for Christmas and Easter. They are all contemporary designs with vibrant colours. Each set consists of Altar Frontal, Pulpit Fall, Burse and Veil. They were commissioned from Juliet Hemingway, who is based in Derby. She was trained as an Arts and Design teacher in 1977 and set up her own business in 1980. The former Archbishop of Canterbury the Most Revd and Right Honourable Dr George Carey commissioned her to produce his enthronement robes. On the release of Terry Waite, his church commissioned from her a special chasuble to be made to celebrate his freedom from captivity.

A new church guide was published in time for Heritage Weekend. It is an updated edition of the original guide produced in 1981 to celebrate the 700th Anniversary of the Parish of Ashton by Canon Albert Radcliffe, a former Rector. With full colour photographs on the covers, it is available from the church, Tameside Local Studies and Archives Centre and Portland Basin Museum.

An historical event for the church and the bride's family took place in the summer when Daryl McClure and Dean Sutcliffe were married. Daryl was the 7th generation and the 11th family member to be married in the parish church since 1825. It was also the first wedding conducted by our new Curate Revd Pat Lodge. The wedding attracted wide publicity in the media with interviews on Granada TV and photographs in the national press and Church Times. It also created good publicity for the Parish Church.

Many people have noticed the crosses attached to the church tower. Unfortunately some of the stonework had become unsafe, so until this can be rectified the crosses serve to protect the stonework and identify the church as a place of Christian Worship. How long they will be in place depends on financial constraints. It is hoped that restoration work can start in the next financial year depending on grants being obtained.

The Friends are always looking for new members and invite you to become a Friend of Ashton Parish Church by joining them and helping to maintain and beautify this wonderful Grade 1 listed building which is part of our heritage.

To join, pick up a membership form from the church, download a copy from the Forum website or apply to the Secretary: Mrs Joyce Currie, 27 Rushmere, Ashton-under-Lyne. OL6 9EB Tel: 0161 330 5795

For Guided Tours of the Church contact Mr Alan F Bacon Church Historian and Archivist. 17 St Christopher's Avenue, Ashton-under-Lyne. OL6 9DT Tel: 0161 330 5829.

Alan F Bacon
Friends of Ashton Parish Church

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