St Lawrence Church, Sandhurst
Churchwardens: Jim Brown 01452 731900 Carolyn Wright 01452 731450
Church postcode: GL2 9NP
Contact email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The church, open daily, is at the centre of the village, close to the Village Hall, cricket field and village green.
Sandhurst village, just 3 miles north of Gloucester and with easy access to Tewkesbury and Cheltenham has just over 200 dwellings, a population of some 500 people. Historically Sandhurst was a mainly farming community, but now just 4 farming families tend the land. The rest of the community is made up of a diverse age range of residents with equally diverse occupations. It is a friendly community and has seen a welcome influx of young families in the last 2 – 3 years. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic there was a wide range of thriving social activities – cricket, table tennis, WI, baby & toddler group, flower arrangers, monthly village coffee morning, village fete plus numerous ad hoc social events through the year.
Sandhurst Church in its earliest days belonged to St. Oswold’s Priory in Gloucester, from which a chaplain was sent out to minister to the people. The present building is partly 14th century, but was mainly rebuilt in 1858. The belfry holds a ring of 8 bells. A team regularly ring for the main services, and also for special occasions. In 1996 a churchyard survey was carried out, when all memorials and their inscriptions were recorded, a copy of this is in the church and a map and index of names are on the back of the notice board in the car park. This was updated in 2017 and a complete index of names is kept in the church.
It is the largest church in the Benefice, seating up to 180 people, and has a committed and adaptable congregation and strong community links. Enthusiastic lay leaders help to run services and following installation of a kitchenette at the back of the church refreshments are served after most morning services.
The beautiful building has been well-maintained over the years and quinquennial related repairs have been completed. More recently, comprehensive audio-visual equipment with a mixing deck has been installed – this has been a huge benefit and enabled us to host the monthly family service with band playing and try new initiatives such as a film club open to the whole community. A group of men & women, the Church Yard Working Party, meet most Monday morning to maintain the churchyard in an excellent condition; a band of flower arrangers provide floral arrangements throughout the year; a cleaning rota with some 40 volunteers keeps the church building hoovered, polished and dusted!
If you would like to make a donation towards the upkeep of St Lawrence Church, please follow this link.
What do we have planned and what memorable events have there been?
- Scarecrow Nativity, with scene set up on the village green in December 2020
- Good Friday trail telling the Easter story in a number of locations around the village
- The restored handbells are being used regularly: if you’d like to join our group of ringers talk to a churchwarden to find out next meeting date – no experience needed
- Regular film nights – showing films such as Victoria and Abdul, Edie, Fisherman’s Friends. The next film night will be advertised when restrictions are lifted.
- St George’s Day Supper – a great success which we hope to repeat
- working with Church Commissioners repairs identified in last Quinquennial inspection will be done in 2021
- making permanent changes to rear of nave area in the church, work started May 2021
- Harvest Supper – alternate years
- Games Nights in Sandhurst Village Hall
- Auction of promises
- Open gardens (in conjunction with the Village Hall committee)
The PCC work closely with the Village Hall Committee who run a wonderful village hall right opposite the church. Find out more at: www.sandhurstvillagehall.co.uk