Category Archives: Pictures

Postings with pictures

Bowling with the Youth Group

As has become almost traditional, we started the term by taking the Youth Group bowling at the Hollywood Bowl at Bracknell. This time we took twenty-one young people, so barely fitted into the four lanes that we had booked.

Next time I suspect we’re going to have to book five lanes, as with the numbers of people on each lane it took longer than usual to get through.

All this bowling practice means that some of them are getting pretty good, with Steve getting fairly soundly beaten by Matt (although Steve blames the fact that the bouncy side-bars being up on his lane put him off). Nagio seems to be another of our star bowlers, scoring 123 without much of a problem. At one point she just bowled and didn’t even wait to see where it went, and went back to the jukebox behind the lane – she scored a strike with that shot! We also broke the record for how quickly we had to call out the lane engineer – within 5 minutes one of the young people (who shall remain nameless) managed to get a ball stuck between the side-bars and the edge of the lane.

Anyway, I’ve put some pictures below. Including two of the night bowling after about 8:30pm when they “turn the lights down and the music up”!!!

A Few More Christmas Pictures

Below are a few more shots from Christmas Eve. The first is a shot through the vestry door shortly before the first of our three Christingle services. During the course of Christmas Eve, with those services, and the Midnight service we had almost 850 people through the doors – we had over three hundred at the Midnight service alone. The 4pm service appeared to be the most popular, with even the Wokingham MP, John Redwood turing up (and apparently slipping out the back door at the end!).

When considering the numbers, it is worth bearing in mind that the Church realistically seats only 150 people comfortably, so all of the services had at least some people standing.

I took the other shots when I climbed the tower to fly the flag for Christmas. As the weather forecast was for wind and rain overnight, I took advantage of a dry, and relatively wind-less period between the 2pm and 4pm Christingles to climb the tower in the light. Not strictly correct, but it beat trying to do it in high winds and driving rain, plus I could take the pictures.

The first two shots are of the bells, which the bell ringers had rung into the up position ready for the peal before the midnight service. However it does give you a chance to see them before they get taken out next month for restoration.

The other shots are a couple from the top of the tower, one looking north towards Warren Lodge, now an old peoples home. The other looking south over Finchampstead village.

Carol Singing

Last night was the second of the traditional St James Choir Christmas events. The junior choir spent the afternoon making Christingles for the services today, and following that the adult choir joined them for carol singing, starting off at Warren Lodge, the old peoples home in the village, and then on to two of the three pubs – The Queens Oak and The Greyhound.

As in previous years the choir was augmented by the odd one or two additional people, and as always on arrival in the pub the first port of call for the tenor and bass lines was the bar, entirely to lubricate the vocal chords of course.

Anyway, below are a few pictures from carol singing.

Finchampstead Christmas Concert 2004

Last night we had the first of the traditional Finchampstead Christmas Events, the Christmas Concert in the Memorial Hall. More entertaining than the Royal Variety Performance, it showcased an unbelievable range of performers. (It should be noted that the word unbelievable has often been applied to performances from previous years!!!)

As always, the show opened with the Fledgelings Nativity, noteable this year for a Joseph who wasn’t keen on taking on the role of father… After bursting into tears had failed, and then trying to kick or pull anything in reach (including baby Jesus, who was dropped on his head), he discovered a new vocation with sheep, consisting of seeing how much straw he could put on it’s head…

This year, thanks to a lot of help from Chris Driver, the Youth Group contributed two items. The younger members did a serious item on the true meaning of Christmas, whilst the older members performed a somewhat less serious play where they get stuck in the Oracle centre on Christmas Eve.

The Working Party closed the first half with a song about their work around the Church, highlighting such important jobs as the frequent maintenance of the Ladies Loo, the painting, the drainage work in the car park, and of course the regular visits to the Queens Oak!

The other much anticipated number each year is the Baptism Visitors. This year they did a reworking of “I’m a Believer” by the Monkees. As the concert always closes with community carol singing, somebody has to follow them. Chris Driver put Richard, our new Rector on the bill after them, there is some suspicion that this was because as he was new he wouldn’t know what he was following!

Having said that Richard did a superb job of following their song with a great reworking of “A Policeman’s Lot” called “A Rector’s Lot”, detailing the endless worries with the conservation work at the Church. I guess we’ll be adding the Rector’s contribution to the list of anticipated items for next year.

Richard was followed by the reappearance of Mrs Beamish, still complaining about having to shake hands with people in Church services. We then finished with the traitional community carol singing.

Next on the schedule is tonights traditional carol singing/pub crawl around the village, before the Church services kick off with three Christingle services on Christmas Eve.

I’ve posted a few pictures from the forty or so we took last night. I’ll probably do a general Christmas set, with pictures from all the events for the pictures web site, once the festivities are finished.

Party Time II

After celebrating Paul’s Birthday last Saturday, we were again up at the Church celebrating another birthday.

This time it was Danni, who has just turned 18. The guest list was again a wide range of ages, but generally younger than the crowd last week. In fact me and Beth felt positively old at times. The event was black tie, so for those of you who complain about not seeing pictures of me and Beth, there is a picture of us dressed up included below. My suit was newly purchased for the event, because as a result of us both losing weight over the past few months, my previous suit was too big. (Makes a change from having to buy bigger clothes!)

We did feel slightly old at times, although there were quite a few relations, and people from the Church that Danni had invited, there was a very large contingent of Danni’s school friends, dancing the night away. In some ways it was a bit like a wedding in that there was a massive range of people. We ended up chatting away from the main dance floor by the bar.

Anyway, we remembered to take the camera this time, so I’ve put some of the pictures below.