The final part of our busy weekend was on Sunday afternoon. Every year, on the weekend closest to St James day the church tower is opened, and we serve tea and cakes to visitors. As in previous years, Ann, our Church press officer (whose job falls under the Communications Committee which I chair) publicised the event with the local newspapers.
Over recent years we have tried to have a policy that we publicise as much as we can with the local paper, and also have a single point of contact for the Church. This has paid dividends in that the local reporters have got to know Ann, and even if our items get bumped from time to time, the papers know they have a good contact. In the longer term that good contact means that when we have something really important, it is likely to get in, and in cases like this week, they have a good stock of pictures.
This week the Wokingham Times has started doing a feature called ‘Pride of Place’ about parts of the local area, and they chose to start with Finchampstead, doing a two page spread on the village. As a result of our contacts we had a reporter and photographer come up to the open day at the church. Ann’s son was home for the weekend from University, so whilst she was there for some of the time, when the photographer from the paper turned up I helped out suggesting a good spot for a picture, and making sure that she, and the various people she wanted for pictures got together. The article includes a photograph Dave Strucket with the bells, our new Priest-in-Charge, Rev Richard Warden who was interviewed during the week and photographed on Sunday, and our Choir comes up in a picture of the planting of the new Queens Oak earlier on this year. A large part of the two page spread has some link to the Church. All the kind of stuff that goes towards raising the visibility of the Church in the community.
Anyway, I took a couple of pictures. Firstly one of Richard sat on the bench outside the church being photographed, and also when we had a bit of blue sky, a nice shot of the tower with the new flag flying. Incidentally, the shot of the tower shows the wonders of Photoshop. The original has three people on top of the tower in it! (Although there is still one head left in the picture…)