St Andrew’s church seeks volunteers in its ‘green gym’

St Andrew’s Church, Southbridge Road, is seeking volunteers keen to do a couple of hours of community gardening in the churchyard each month.

Shirley poppyThe church is historically notable as being where the artist Cicely Mary Barker worshipped regularly; last month we reported how one of the tree fairies artist’s larger, commissioned works was unveiled on permanent exhibition in the church.

Parishioners and some of the older pupils at St Andrew’s High School have already been invited to assist with the churchyard garden, but the request for help is open to anyone who wants some exercise in a “green gym”. No gardening expertise is necessary, just a willingness to lend a hand for an hour or so once a month.

The vicar of St Andrew’s, Wealands Bell, said, “At the moment, the work is dull and wintry, mainly weeding and tidying, with maybe a bit of tree care between leaf fall and sap rise (as I believe it’s known).

“But come the spring there will be planters and borders to fill with new growth, the grass to be cut and so on. Churchwarden David Matthews oversees the garden and he is usually there on the first Saturday of the month from 10am till noon.”

The next scheduled churchyard garden session will be on Saturday, December 6. Anyone wanting any more information about how to help, or for other news about the town centre church, contact Rev Bell at

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