St. Petrock’s Church – visit our 15th Century gem now!

Churchwarden John Gratton has stepped down after 17 years of exemplary service to St Petrock’s Church and to the village of Timberscombe. After the service on Sunday 12th June taken by Rev Caroline Ralph, John was presented with a Thank You card and a bench with a brass plaque noting his years of dedication.

ST PETROCK’S CHURCH TIMBERSCOMBE

This beautiful historic village church is open every day from 9am to 5pm for everyone to visit and enjoy, with weekly services every Sunday at 11am.

Other events regularly take place in this friendly Grade I Listed mediaeval church – bellringing, handbell ringing, gardening club, history group and other activities. As the church is open and accessible , we simply ask that every visitor is sensitive to the feelings of others, and is respectful of social distancing as appropriate. The safety and well-being of our community is paramount. If you have any questions or would simply like to speak to a Churchwarden, please contact Kate Hart (01643 841745) or Marion Jeffrey (01643 841500) or Deputy Churchwarden John Gratton (01643 841490) and we will be pleased to help. St Petrock’s Church postcode is TA24 7TP. There is no dedicated church car park but parking is freely available in the village. The church provides an accessible toilet and offers refreshment facilities, and from May 2022 we now have a brand new hearing loop for all who have a hearing difficulty. St Petrock’s Church pages are regularly updated. Please refer to the full list of drop down options for more information.

Your support is appreciated. Make our beautiful church sustainable for future years. Please click to donate to the church here.

Raise funds for St Petrock’s Church through Easyfundraising. 

There is now an urgent need to replace the deteriorated pathways within the grounds of the church so as to make our building accessible to all who wish to visit. Fundraising is well under way and we have £7000 already raised as of end May 2022, but it will cost £9260 to complete this project. Your help and support is most welcome!

Do you do your shopping online? If so, you could raise extra funds for St Petrock’s with Easyfundraising. It is very easy to join and does not cost you anything.  There are over 6000 retailers on the site and we get a small percentage of each qualifying purchase, made through the site, once you have joined. We have 12 supporters and have raised over £300 for St Petrock’s so far. Use the link below to join. Contact Marion Moncrieff 01643 841318 or Marion Jeffrey 01643 841500 if you have any questions or need help. Thank you for your support.

https://www.easyfundraising.org.uk/causes/stpetrocktimberscombe/

NCT supported our fundraising for an accessible toilet and small servery with a wonderful £10,000 grant in August 2019 towards the total amount required of £46,077. Thank you to everyone who supports NCT and our village church.
We were delighted to achieve the total by December 2019 and work was completed September 2020

https://www.nationalchurchestrust.org/news/July2019grants
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Other wonderful supportive funders of our community asset:

Somerset Churches Trust

Garfield Weston Foundation

The Timberscombe Trust

Somerset Community Foundation – Somerset West Lottery

Exmoor Trust

Fairfield Trust

Rank Foundation

Timberscombe Parish Council

Ecclesiastical Insurance

Magna Housing

Timberscombe Bell Ringers and many local and generous individual and family donations. Thank you!

A St Petrock’s project during lockdown in 2020 was to conserve our tower clock and renovate the external blue and gilt dial. These photos tell the story of the wonderful improvement that has been achieved. Thank you to all our generous funders –

A Timberscombe Family (Anonymous) and other local families

The Timberscombe Trust

Churchcare

Allchurches Trust

The Worshipful Company of Clockmakers

Important improvements in the life of our village church and community asset – St Petrock’s Church – 2019-2021

With valuable National Lottery Heritage Fund support secured in October 2018, the PCC was able to complete much-needed roof repairs to the south aisle roof and the vestry roof by October 2019. The PCC was engaged in promoting and leading a variety of heritage engagement activities in St Petrock’s and the village of Timberscombe enabled through funding from the NLHF,  but still only possible with the help of a fabulous range of local volunteers who offered enthusiasm, positivity, expertise and masses of practical support. We thanked them all and celebrated completion of the heritage activities with a wonderful party, and indeed for all the community to enjoy, in January 2020.

At a time when there was strong competition for funding assistance, it was important to make a compelling case for the community engagement typically taking place in and around our village church.  With funding support secured the PCC knew that the benefit to our community would endure for a very long time.

The PCC had also been working on a distinct and separate project since June 2017 to raise funds to provide an accessible toilet and servery. A National Churches Trust Opinion Poll compiled September 2018 showed that almost a quarter of British people said they would be more inclined to visit a church as a leisure activity or tourist attraction if there were better visitor-friendly facilities such as accessible toilets. Fundraising for the toilet and servery continued until the target of £40,000 was achieved just before the end of 2019; a tremendous achievement. St Petrock’s would be fully prepared to face the future as a secure, modern and welcoming community asset with work completed in 2020.

We can be proud of what we have achieved as a church and a community over the last few years. Some examples include:

  1. An Oral History project with local volunteers trained by the Oral History Society over 2 days to interview local Exmoor voices and help preserve a portrait of life in our rural Exmoor community for the future which is now available at the Somerset Heritage Centre.
  2. A Timberscombe Cooks! village heritage recipe book which is so much more. With anecdotes, photographs of contributors and local events, this was the result of over 70 entries and carefully put together by a team of volunteers who did such a great job the 100 copies sold out in an hour when the book was launched in Timberscombe in October 2019. A second re-print had almost sold out by January 2020 which is quite a testament to the quality and production standard achieved by the volunteers.
  3. A St Petrock’s History Group has been running successfully since July 2018 with a variety of local topics for lectures and talks and well supported with 50 members. New subjects and speakers are always welcomed. Please look at the History Group page for a record of previous talks and forthcoming events.
  4. Our local school children have learnt about the childrens’ author and Methodist Minister Rev JP Martin who lived in Timberscombe until 1968 and each now has a copy of one of his cult ‘Uncle’ books.
  5. A recent photography session for the children meant they could explore and record key artefacts in the church and churchyard to enhance their heritage awareness.
  6. A Village Heritage pamphlet is now available so we can explore our village and make it easily accessible to walkers and tourists.
  7. A walking map, beautifully written by Churchwarden John Gratton and his wife Jenny, has been produced which links the six churches forming The Dunster Benefice.
  8. An updated and improved St Petrock’s Church pamphlet is now available, assisted by a fantastic act of generosity from a volunteer archaeological historian who provided clear well researched information, much of it new. He used a History Group invitation to prepare a pilot study for the Somerset Churches Project.
  9. Local fundraising covered the costs of overhauling our church tower clock, installed in 1926, and restoring the external dial to its original beauty with gilded embellishments on a trafalgar blue clock face. This conservation, along with the electrification of the movement, guarantees a reliable village clock without an ascent up a perilous ladder!
  10. With the support of a grant from the Maltwood Fund via SANHS, it was possible to conduct carbon dating of substances found during the monitered archaeological dig of the churchyard, providing conclusive evidence of a monastic settlement on this site in the Anglo Saxon period, namely 777AD. This work was completed in 2021.

There is always more to be done, but this has been a typically busy period and rewarding for all the volunteers who have taken part. We thank you all for reading this and for all that you do and will do for our community.

Please contact Marion Jeffrey on 841500, Kate hart 841745, Marion Moncrieff 841318 or any member of the PCC. Thank you.