And we’re open!
Heavy rain didn’t dampen the smiles at Earley St Nicolas church on Saturday. The Bishop of Reading, the Rt Revd Andrew Proud, cut the ribbon to a new community centre which will be used by local groups including Scouts, model clubs, a pre-school and charities.
A NEW community centre is now open, thanks to an ice cream eating bishop.
On Saturday, the Bishop of Reading, the Rt Revd Andrew Proud was joined by hundreds of others for a short outdoor service of dedication.
And, as the old adage says, the show had to go on, despite the pouring rain: Bishop Andrew was cutting the ribbon which would open the new buildings and allow everyone to get inside.
Umbrellas ready, residents, parishioners, councillors, the Earley town mayor and visiting friends all gathered to take part in the dedication.
Bishop Andrew spoke fondly of the ideas behind the new centre, explaining that its genesis came out of a generous donation left by church member Pat Drummer in her will. The church wanted to use the money wisely and, after talking to the community, felt that the new centre was the best way forward.
It comprises a large hall suitable and three smaller ones, a cafe area and office space and it is all linked to the church buildings.
“This is turning the church inside out,” Bishop Andrew said. “I was talking with the architect and he was explaining the vision: with this space God is saying [to the community] ‘I love you and care for you’.”
Groups that use the new St Nicolas centre were on hand to meet with residents and recruit new members.
They included the 1st Earley Scouts, the church’s Mothers’ Union, Board Games Cafe and men’s curry club. There was also displays from, among others, a Tai Chi group, a model making club and a pre-school.
The Bishop of Reading, the Rt Revd Andrew Proud with the vicar of St Nicolas, the Revd Neil Warwick
Marianne Warwick and Esme Hayler from the Board Games Club were encouraging people to join REInspired is one of the charities that St Nicolas helps
Above: 4Bones Quartet Left: 1st Earley Scouts were on hand