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The booklet of reports for the Annual General Meeting of Hearsall Baptist Church for year 2019-2020. Includes reports from all sections including some room hirers.

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Published by Hearsall Baptist Church, 2020-05-21 12:41:20

Hearsall Baptist Church AGM Reports 2020

The booklet of reports for the Annual General Meeting of Hearsall Baptist Church for year 2019-2020. Includes reports from all sections including some room hirers.

Hearsall Baptist Church
Annual General Meeting Reports

May 2020

www.hearsallbaptist.org

Queensland Avenue,
Coventry
CV5 8FE


Contents

Minister’s Report .............................................................................................................. 3
Church Secretary’s Report ................................................................................................. 4
Treasurers Report 2019/2020............................................................................................ 6
16th Guides Report ........................................................................................................... 7
Alcoholics Anonymous ...................................................................................................... 8
Barr’s Hill Guild April 2020................................................................................................. 9
BMS Birthday Scheme ..................................................................................................... 10
Canley Road Home Group ............................................................................................... 10
Coexist ........................................................................................................................... 11
Coventry Morris Men Report........................................................................................... 12
Coventry Stamp and Postcard Club.................................................................................. 13
CTEC Report.................................................................................................................... 14
Eco Matters Report ......................................................................................................... 15
Fabric Report .................................................................................................................. 16
Forward Planning Group ................................................................................................. 17
Inspire School of Dance ................................................................................................... 18
Group Scout Leader’s Report........................................................................................... 19
Health & Safety Report ................................................................................................... 20
Hearsall Luncheon Club Report........................................................................................ 21
Madeira Group. .............................................................................................................. 22
Music Report .................................................................................................................. 23
Pastoral Care Group ........................................................................................................ 24
Room Steward Report..................................................................................................... 24
Social Committee............................................................................................................ 25
Song and Story Time ....................................................................................................... 26
Sunday School ................................................................................................................ 28
Talking English ................................................................................................................ 30
Technology Group Report ............................................................................................... 31

2|Page


Minister’s Report

Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that
city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you
do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You
are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you
ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’

James 4: 13 - 15
As the church year comes to an end in a season of pandemic lockdown, James’ words ring
loud and clear in our ears. In the last few weeks, so very much has been cancelled. Diaries
have been cleared. Plans have been shelved.

We had new plans for outreach, including an eco-church service, an Easter Experience
exhibition for local school children, and the adoption of a new project to support those in
need, possibly Mechanics for Africa, in Zambia or Bardsey House in Coventry - or both. We
planned a new Bereavement Support Group and were growing our Song and Story time
outreach. And of course, we have put in a pre-planning application for the redevelopment of
our site. Plans, plans, plans… We may revive many of these plans, but with a renewed
humility. We should say, If it is the Lord’s will we will do this or that…

Jesus’ first words in Mark’s gospel are: The time has come. The kingdom of God has come
near. Repent, and believe the good news!

The global change wrought by the pandemic may be making us all think again about a great
many things. Jesus’ words might speak a message something like this: “This is a key
moment in history. God’s way of running things is close by. Think again, and trust that
something positive is happening here.”

As we come out of lockdown we must turn our attention to how we can become the body of
Christ when we return to a 'new normal’. So far we have been preparing for a major change
in the way that the church expresses itself through the buildings. It may be that what has
happened so far is just the Lord preparing us for a different future than the one we have so
far envisaged.' God’s way of running things might include: a renewed community spirit; a
more visceral awareness of environmental concerns; and a delight in simple ways of living.
Perhaps it’s time to work in a spirit of practical co-operation on shared goals with all of our
neighbours in Chapelfields.

And so we may need to think again about a great many things, including the building project.
If it is the Lord’s will, we may knock down our buildings and start again. If it is the Lord’s will
we may have to think again.

Your friend and minister

David

3|Page


Church Secretary’s Report

Welcome to this year’s AGM report booklet, produced under very
unusual conditions this year, as we find ourselves under lockdown,
because of the Covid-19 virus. It will be available online mostly, but
there will be a few actual copies produced when this is possible.
The actual AGM itself will probably have to be rescheduled.

Services have been provided on the website and the Easter Service was special as it had
video content and was much appreciated by everyone. Paper transcripts and CD’s have
been provided to those who cannot access things online. Meetings have been carried out on
Zoom and Bible Study groups on WhatsApp. My thanks to all those who have enabled this
to happen.

Church membership now stands at 50, as we have had to rationalise membership in line with
quorums for meetings, due to the new constitution we have had to adopt for becoming a
Charity Incorporated Organisation (CIO). We have now been registered with the Charity
Commission and have our own Charity Number, so are subject to their rules and regulations
and we have to send them our accounts at the end of our financial year and a Trustees
report and inform them of any changes to the Diaconate and certain other things.

We have sadly lost a few members of our congregation in the last few months, Barbara
Hunter being one, she was also a member of the lunch club and much loved by us all. We
also had the funerals of Ted Schoberth and the amazing event which was Fanny France’s
funeral, with over two hundred people attending and having food afterwards in the church
buildings. I also sadly have to report that Reverend Maurice Markham, who was a retired
Baptist Minister and had preached at Hearsall, died at the beginning of April after contracting
Covid-19 and losing his battle with it.

We had the Dedication of Laurence Peirce in September, and were to have had several
Baptisms, but these have sadly had to be postponed due to the lockdown situation. We
thanked Sandra for all her planning for the Junior Fellowship, as she stepped down from
preparing the materials for this at the end of last year. Our leadership team are still running
one Deacon short, but Eric and Nick agreed to stand for another three years and myself also
as Secretary. We were thankfully able to vote for Julia to continue as Treasurer in February.
Andy Thompson is now Health and Safety Officer and we have extended the Health and
Safety Policy.

After collecting all necessary data in line with General Data Protection Regulations, and
waiting for some of you to finally move, we have produced a new Directory, which was given
out at the beginning of the year.

The work on the Manse kitchen started in February after an extended holdup whilst Party
Wall Applications were sought and approved, only to come to a halt again because of the
Coronavirus outbreak. We are hoping work will soon be resumed. We need to get our
Minister back to some sort of normality with his kitchen.

4|Page


The building project plans are going forward to the pre-planning stage and we are awaiting
comments to advise us on how to proceed with the plans, as the provision for enough
parking may be an issue.

Maria is doing a sterling job of producing the Messenger. As with the AGM booklet, the next
issue will be available online and only minimal copies printed. We will try and get a copy to
those we know who we know can’t access it online. As far as dates are concerned for church
events, I am in the dark as to what can and can’t happen until we have more details from the
Government.

Several people helped with the Coventry Winter Night Shelter at All Souls, by providing
meals, helping on the days or washing bed linen. Also thank you to everyone who donated
food and clothing items for this. I took quite an amount of these items round for them, and
they were very grateful.

We are involved with CTEC (Churches together in Earlsdon and Chapelfields), in the Good
Neighbours Scheme and the Christians Against Poverty Initiative, although this has been
affected by the lockdown situation. We are hoping the timeframe for this will be extended.
We hosted the Lent Lunch on the second Tuesday in Lent, just before the lockdown started.

We had lovely Christmas Services, with the Nativity Service always so special and better
every year it seems. Thank you to all those involved. The toy service was very special and
we had lots of toys donated. Hearsall also hosted the District Beaver Christingle Service the
week after, which again was a lovely event. The Epiphany party in January also went very
well and we have had faith lunches, meals out and a strawberry tea. We have said goodbye
to Father Michael from All Souls and welcomed Father Paul Burch in his place. The pulpit
swap for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity saw Reverend Tulo Raistrick come to preach
at our service and David went to St. Barbara’s.

Also as part of this week we hosted the Fellowship meal in January for about sixty people.
This was a very successful event but was very hard work and several members of our normal
catering team could not take part this year.

We have now taken the decision not to have any evening services at Hearsall. People can
join in at Earlsdon Park Village at 6.00pm on the first Sunday of the month or go to Holyhead
Road at 6.30pm on the third Sunday of the month. David will be taking part in leading some
of these services at both venues. He and Sandra and Derek continue to lead services at St.
Andrew’s home in Earlsdon, so it is good if we can support them.

I hope we can all meet up again soon when the current situation is over, but my thanks to
you all for whatever you do in the church and may God Bless you and be with you through
these difficult times.

Anne Thompson

5|Page


Treasurers Report 2019/2020

As I write this report we have been in lock down for nearly six
weeks.
The situation in the Country and the fact that we will not be able
to meet as a congregation will mean as we go forward we will
have reduced income. This will be from rental income and for
those who give on the collection plate each week.
If you wish to set up a standing order, we bank with Lloyds and the sort code is 309233 and
the account number is 00036515.

Ministry
2019/2020 has seen our giving this year for ministry increase by 6.3% of the ministry
expenses.
We continue to benefit from the small employer’s exemption from employer’s national
insurance, this has also meant an additional saving of £2000.00.

Community Room Hire
Our community buildings continue to provide a much-needed facility, our room rental
continues to decline and this year by £4613.00

Donations Bequests
We received £125.00 from the Pritchard family £80.00 from Rotary, £200.00 from Luncheon
Club £612.00 from the estate of Fanny of which £300.00 of this was donated to Cancer
Research and £500.00 from the Hunter family.

Giving and Fundraising
This year we have given £2268.00 to BMS, £2700.00 to HM, £360.00 to Hope Village and
£150.00 to the CAP.
Christmas giving, we gave a £100.00 each to Spurgeons, Cyrenians and Hope Village.
Further funds were raised for specific causes; £393.50 for our Harvest Appeal and £94.00
that went to HEBA for Flood Relief.

Social Committee
Our social committee continue to fund raise and this year raised £846.25.
These funds were raised by a very busy team who organized a Summer and Christmas Fair
and a Strawberry Tea amongst other fundraising activities. Well done to all.

Year End
This year I report a deficit £13220.00 in this year’s accounts. We paid Mayway £6120.00 a
one off payment which is why this is so high.

May I thank everyone that contributes to Hearsall and wish you all
Every Blessing

Julia Lepoidevin

Church Treasurer
May 2020

6|Page


16th Guides Report

This is a report in unprecedented times, we currently
keep in touch with our girls by giving them activity and
badge ideas on Facebook and deliver Easter Eggs to
let them know we miss them. Who knows when we’ll
be back to normal still hoping for summer camp, but so
many other things cancelled, we remain optimistic!!
Looking back to happier times…..
We’ve taken part in many activities including kayaking, tobogganing, theatre trip, and
swimming. We’ve tried to embrace the new programme, learning to put our own spin on
some of the slightly strange activities and badges! We took a lot of girls to the Region
Celebrate event at the NEC where it was great for the girls to see how immense the Girl-
guiding movement is that they are part of.
4 girls completed their Baden Powell Challenge, the last under the old programme. I am
happy to say they have ALL moved on to become Rangers and Young Leaders. 2 girls were
fundraising to take part in International camps this summer, now not happening, although
hopefully only postponed.
Division Camp gave us glorious weather for the 3rd year on the trot in June, summer camp
was at Whiteley Woods just outside Sheffield. Highlights included weaselling, visiting caves
at Castleton, the Ice Cream farm and outdoor swimming pool at Hathersage.
2019 ended with our Winter indoor weekend in Kenilworth, where our Baden Powell girls
received their award at the castle.
We are so looking forward to seeing all the girls again asap!

Pat Dickson

7|Page


Alcoholics Anonymous

Alcoholics Anonymous hold meetings at Hearsall
Baptist Church every Wednesday from 8.00pm to
9.30pm.
The majority of our meetings are closed meetings,
i.e. restricted to alcoholics or those who have or think
they may have a drinking problem. On four occasions
a year, on which there are five Wednesdays in the
month, we have an ‘Open’ Meeting which non-
alcoholics may attend. All in attendance are expected
to preserve the anonymity of those present. NOTE:
Change during current lockdown our meetings are
being held online and are not open to non-alcoholics.
“Alcoholics Anonymous is a Fellowship of men and women who share their experience,
strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help
others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop
drinking. There are no dues or fees for AA membership; we are self-supporting through our
own contributions. AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organisation or
institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any
causes.
Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety”.
(Copyright A.A Grapevine Inc. 1947)
Local AA helpline 024 76 612211 (2.30pm – 10.30pm daily)
National telephone helpline: 0800 9177 650
www.alcoholics-anonymous.org.uk

8|Page


Barr’s Hill Guild April 2020

Barr’s Hill Guild is a not-for-profit organisation set up in 1913 for the pupils, past and present,
and staff of Barr’s Hill Grammar School, Radford Road, Coventry. However, the school,
founded in 1908, ceased to be a grammar school becoming co-ed and comprehensive in
1974. This means we are not recruiting new members from the current school, merely a few
ladies who mainly have come back to Coventry in their retirement. Membership is a one off
payment – no annual fee so our income is low and very dependent on our activities. We also
are dipping into our bank account to fund the twice yearly newsletter.
The Guild has a small committee, all volunteers, who arrange two reunion lunches, a
Summer Afternoon Tea and three coffee mornings a year. The lunches are held at the
nearby Standard Triumph Club, the Tea at Earlsdon Golf Club and the coffee mornings at
Hearsall Baptist Church. These are held in February, November and May (which has a short
AGM beforehand) and we have speakers usually from local charities or similar, to whom we
make a small donation. Unfortunately, with the advancing age of our members, attendance
at these events are now low and even lower when the weather is bad!
Last year we had several very interesting speakers for the coffee mornings – the speaker
from the Friends of the War Memorial Park had most of us trying to recollect the park in the
1950’s and 60’s. The Friends are working hard to restore some of the features and also to
set up panels of interest for today’s attendees.
The second speaker came from Inter-Arc, a 25-year-old registered charity based in Coventry
and dealing initially with Humanitarian Aid in Romania, and now helping vulnerable people in
Bangalore, which include the children of families with a parent suffering from Leprosy. It was
a very emotional talk illustrated with videos and slides.
The AGM meeting had a talk from one of the members about old Coventry which gave rise to
many personal remembrances and led to memories of the ladies being evacuated with the
school in WW2 to Nuneaton and Leamington Spa.
The Guild is very grateful for the Church allowing us to hire the room at a low cost as this
allows us to continue with these coffee mornings (until the refurbishments take place of
course).

S. M. Hope

Treasurer, Barr’s Hill Guild

9|Page


BMS Birthday Scheme

The birthday scheme provides healthcare and
community development for some of the most
disadvantaged people in the world. All we have to do is
give a gift of money on our birthday.

In 2019 I sent £464.00 to BMS. Of this £365.00 was
gift aided.

Thank you to everyone who supports this charity.

Kay Ball

Canley Road Home Group

This friendly, lively and loving Home Group has continued to meet
each Tuesday evening throughout the past year,19 years after it
was first formed. Of course the idea of Home Groups is not a new
one. In fact, this is how the early church originally met. The group
consists of 8 members which is ideal, allowing for full interaction
between us. Our meeting gives us the opportunity not only to study
the scriptures but also to support, encourage and pray for each other
and others, and to focus on serving those outside the group. There
are generally 3 or 4 different Bible translations which we have
available and this often leads to further interpretation and discussion.

We are kindly hosted by Linda and John in their home which provides an atmosphere of
comfort and trust which allows each member the confidence to speak freely and
confidentially.

Initially we usually bring each other up to date with relevant happenings of the week and then
open with a short prayer. We continue to be challenged by “The Week” notes which are
prepared by our minister, David, allowing time for worship before moving on to focusing on
the meaning of Bible passages and their relevance to today. These usually give us the
opportunity to look more deeply into the detail of the previous Sunday's service and sermon.
The notes also suggest pointers for a personal response to the area of study during the rest
of the week and into the future.

We conclude the evening with prayers for others followed by a social period over a cup of
tea/coffee and usually......... Doughnuts!

Peter Fearn

10 | P a g e


Coexist

It has been yet another year of change and challenges for Coexist. After three sessions at
the Royal Oak in Earlsdon we had to move on, yet again. We found a new and, in Coexist
terms, permanent, home in the back room of The Nursery Tavern on Lord Street which we
have been using since our July meeting.

The Nursery Tavern has proved very welcoming and supportive to community musical
initiatives such as ours. It is the smallest room that we have used, so far, but as numbers
build up, it makes for a cosy and intimate evening of music, poetry and laughter. Up until the
Coronavirus lockdown we had had seven evenings, in The Nursery Tavern last one in
February had 24 people attending, about half of which made a contribution to the
programme.
Martin Prue and Nick Leonard (disguised as ‘Separated at Birth’) are STILL the house-band
and hosts every month. They performing a wide range of songs from the 1960s to original
songs they have written.

We have had a wide range of acts that regularly perform. On the music front we have had
performances by Separated at Birth (together and individually), music hall songs, acapella
singers, singers accompanied by Separated at Birth, singers with backing tracks, guest
singer/guitarists and ukulele player/singers. We have also had a wide range of poetry from
David and members of his poetry group and comic monologues. New this year has been
contributions from members of the monthly ‘Acoustic Session’ which also meets in The
Nursery Tavern.
‘Separated at Birth’ continue to be regular providers of musical entertainment for the Lunch
Club once a month. These have transformed into popular music of the 50’s and 60’s to sing
along with interspersed with Coexist type songs.
As with many ventures, the future of the group is uncertain, depending on how long ‘social
distancing’ measures are needed. It may be difficult to have so many people in such a small
room in the future. We continue to be committed to this small part of the mission of the
church and will, no doubt, carry on in whatever way is appropriate to the times we are living
through.

Nick Leonard

11 | P a g e


Coventry Morris Men Report

Coventry Morris Men had another successful year in
2019-20, although what happens this year is none too
clear! We meet for about only half the year in the
Upper Hall and when the summer is coming we set out
on the road visiting villages and the occasional public
house (sorry, but it's an integral part of the Morris both
historically and now!). We also dance at fetes, garden
parties and, basically, anywhere that asks us provided
that we can raise a team and some of you will
remember us dancing at the Church's celebration.
One of our most memorable events in the past year
was a wedding at the Registry Office in the City Centre where the couple and the guests
were a mix of French and Canadian with a strong Chinese influence as well. Only the bride
had any idea what we did as she had seen us dancing in Earlsdon, so it was a surprise for
everyone else but it all went down well.
Other than those events, we dance our "traditional" tours in January and late May, showing
the winter sword dancing traditions from the north-east and the Welsh Border counties and
then the spring/summer dances from the Cotswolds area. Next year will be our 90th birthday
(although we had 10 years off in the 1940s) and we will be celebrating it by, amongst other
things, organising a national Day of Dance, where sides from all over the country will come to
Coventry.
We look forward to sharing some of that celebration with you all too.

Martin Trewinnard

Bagman, Coventry Morris Men

12 | P a g e


Coventry Stamp and Postcard Club

Unfortunately our numbers are gradually dwindling but we have had a good 2019/2020
“season”, though curtailed, of course, by the coronavirus restrictions. Along with all
collecting interests, E-bay, for example, means that philately can be pursued as a “loner” at
home. We ourselves have always enjoyed meeting together to share our hobby. It is
amazing what can be learnt from a country’s stamps about its history, nature and traditions
etc. Our meetings alternate between DIY members’ evenings when we entertain ourselves
and, from other local societies, speakers with a specialised knowledge of one particular
aspect of stamp or card collecting.
Meetings are never too formal and newcomers (perhaps you were a collector at one time?)
will receive a warm welcome – no expertise is required. Please contact David 76411369 or
Ken 76504459 if you would like any more information. We meet fortnightly on Tuesday
evenings from September to May. Thank you for your cooperation in the use of your
premises.

13 | P a g e


CTEC Report

CTEC has had a good year and has seen a new project added to the list of those we share
between the churches. This is Christians Against Poverty, which is being funded by four of
the churches for a trial period, which started in February, but has been suspended during the
shutdown for Covid-19. The Coventry Winter Night Shelter has been supported well by the
CTEC churches and people from our church helped as volunteers, washed the liners and
pillowcases and the lunch club team, plus some others, cooked and served meals on two of
the Monday nights.
The United Advent Service was held at Earlsdon Park Village this year and led by Reverend
Tulo Raistrick and the choir from St. Barbara’s. This was to avoid splitting our congregations
as both places would have held a service at the same time. We also did the carol singing
round the pubs before Christmas and rounded it off at Earlsdon Park Village.
CTEC’s charity this year is the Batthula Care Trust and Kevin and Janet Vaughan gave a
presentation about this charity at the Fellowship meal at Hearsall on the 18th January.
£226.00 was raised for the trust at this event. During the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
Reverend Tulo Raistrick came to preach at our service on the 19th January for the pulpit
swap and David went to St. Barbara’s.
The Lent Lunches are happening as I write this and the money raised will be shared by
Cafod and Christian Aid. The “Difference Course” is being held at Earlsdon Methodist as a
Lent event and is open to all the CTEC churches.
The giving out of Hot Cross Buns and Easter Service leaflets has been cancelled due to the
Covid-19 virus and we will probably be having our committee meeting via Zoom, a video
conferencing facility. The Day of Reflection will also be cancelled.

Anne Thompson

14 | P a g e


Eco Matters Report

Hearsall Baptist Church continues to work towards our silver Eco-Church award and it is
encouraging to see that Creation Care has been a continuing theme in our Church life, in the
sermons, intercession prayers, eco challenges in the Messenger to name just a few
examples.
Our main progress has been to change our energy suppliers, so our energy is now coming
from 100% certified renewable sources. Our electricity from Haven Power is making use of
the carbon cycle and is coming from the largest renewable power station in the UK – the
Drax plant at Selby, North Yorkshire who are manufacturing and burning wood pellets from
sustainable low value commercial forestry using technology to capture and store the carbon
emissions produced.
Getting renewable gas was more problematic but Total Gas is now producing methane from
food and farm waste (biomass) which although producing carbon dioxide is offset by using
renewable materials.
The good news is that by using renewables the VAT on our energy bills is reduced so we will
be saving money as well.

Jan Clemons

15 | P a g e


Fabric Report

Another year of ‘wait-and-see’ I am afraid, no major changes to
any of the fabric of the buildings until we know the outcome of
the new building project.
However, we have had a couple of leaks in the main church
roof for which I had to call out Porter Roofing of Allesley Old
Road. I have got to say that guy is prompt and efficient and has
done a great job at sealing the leaks – although he has said
that the roof is basically completely shot and needs replacing,
but there is no point doing that at present.
We have had some minor electrical work done with a new electric water heater in the ladies
toilet and a new socket in the lounge. The radiant heaters are coming to the end of their lives,
we cannot get spares anymore so we will replace what elements we can until we run out of
parts.
We have replaced most of the lamps in the church and the community rooms with LED
equivalents, although the price of the equivalent strip lighting is prohibitive.
There are building repair report forms both upstairs and down, so if you spot something that
needs repairing please complete one and pop it in the post box outside the main doors.

Andy Thompson.

16 | P a g e


Forward Planning Group

The Forward Planning Group was set up to try and come up with some fresh and creative
ideas for extra social activities for the church membership, to enrich the worship life of the
church and look at possibilities for church outreach. The
group has been meeting every two or three months,
depending on need, for lunch at ‘The City Arms’ on a
Monday lunchtime. Due to the lockdown the group has
only managed to meet four times since the last report.
The group is by no means exclusive, and is open to
anybody who would like to attend, bring new ideas to the
group, and possibly put some extra effort into additional
church activities. Please let David or Anne Thompson
know if you would like to join us and you will be
welcomed with open arms!
Over the past year the group has planned:

 The evening walks
 Longer (day) walks on a Saturday
 A bowling night
 Weekend away at Lee Abbey
 Parade, Harvest and the ‘Easter Experience’
 International Evening
 Eco-church Sunday School
 Church picnic
 Bring and share lunches at church
Due to the lockdown, not all of these have come to fruition, but the ideas and plans are in
place, and we will be putting the plans into action as soon as we are allowed to.

Nick Leonard

17 | P a g e


Inspire School of Dance

Inspire School of Dance has been running now for almost 20years
with the majority of those years spent here at Hearsall Baptist
Church. We offer classes to children and adults in Ballroom, Latin
and Freestyle, take exams through the IDTA (International Dance
Teachers Association) and put on regular shows. Unfortunately due
to the current situation we all find ourselves in, the dance school has
had to temporarily close its doors to keep our members and their
families safe. We are regularly in touch with our dancers through
social media and have held fun quizzes using Zoom. I miss our
dancers terribly and can't wait to return to 'normal' when it is safe to
do so.

Before 'lock-down' the dance school was incredibly busy. On Saturday 25th January we held
our show 'Musical Marathon' which was a great success. The dancers performed to tracks
from musicals including Memory from Cats, It's a Hard Knock Life from Annie and more
modern musicals including Hairspray, We Will Rock You and Matilda. The audience enjoyed
magical Waltzes, cheeky Cha Cha Cha's, fun Freestyle dances, tear jerking slow dances
and then the little children came on and stole the show! It was a wonderful evening and even
though the run up to the event was very stressful I would do it all over again!
Following on from our show, the dancers were preparing for an exam session which was due
to take place in June but unfortunately had to be cancelled.
As we look to the future, I hope that in a few months things will start to return to 'normal' and
classes are able to resume, I pray that all of my dancers are able to return to their lessons
and that themselves and their families were not too badly affected by the virus and I feel
excited to celebrate the dance school and all of its members being able to come back
together as one and share their love of dance.

Kelly-Marie Cooke

18 | P a g e


Group Scout Leader’s Report.

This has been very busy one. Our numbers for this year on the annual census have been
stable with only a small increase on last years figures. All members of the group have
earned badges over the year, which has enabled some of our young people gaining their
Chief Scouts Silver awards, for Cubs and Chief Scouts Gold award for the Scouts. Well
done to them all.

Each section attended at least one camp during the
year starting with the Scouts at Easter, WET and
cold. Cubs had a District camp in the middle of
June, WET but not quite so cold. July and the group
camp and yes, it was still WET but it didn’t stop us
having a good time. We just hope, if we do manage
a camp this year that it will be dry.

All the sections have taken part in District events through the year when the weather allowed.
This included the trolley race and the revamped Nigel Krone Activity day, with several
outdoor events for scouts. Apart from the District Camp a lot of the Cub and Beaver events
had to be cancelled due to the weather, but several of them entered the Swimming Gala with
much success. Both sections enjoyed the annual Christingle service’s and we were pleased
to raise just over £60.00 at the Beaver service in memory of Ben one of our Beavers Ben
aged 7 who died of a rare lung cancer earlier in the year.
Several of our young people took part in the County big walk and raised £700 which enabled
us to renew four of our tents that had seen better days (must have been all the rain). We
also replaced our cooking and eating tent.
Before lockdown the Cubs enjoyed a very interesting evening to celebrate the Chinese New
Year with two of our Chinese Parents. They also took part in the usual craft competition and
came second.
Lastly, I would like to congratulate Eleanor on gaining her D-of-E Gold and also her Queens
Scout Award.
Many thanks to all our helpers and leaders for their work with all the sections, and our
parents for their help and support.

Joan Beever

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Health & Safety Report

In a moment of weakness I have taken on the role of
health & safety officer.
With health & safety being an important and emotive
subject we are including a report in the booklet this year
for the first time.
We are guided by the Baptist Union guidelines on health
& safety and fire precautions and, upon reviewing our
own H&S policy, we decided to update it this year and
the trustees now need to approve it. We are grateful to
Peter Fearn and Graham Walker who look after our
weekly fire alarm testing procedures. We have placed near-miss report forms both
downstairs and upstairs in the community buildings so that room users can report on any
problems that have the potential to cause accident or injury. These should be completed and
posted into the letterbox outside the main door.
Don’t forget if you or a colleague have an accident in the building please complete the
accident register, which is located in the cupboard in the accessible toilet.
Please remember that Health & Safety is everyone’s responsibility.

Andy Thompson

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Hearsall Luncheon Club Report

At the time of writing Hearsall Lunch Club has had to
be suspended until further notice due to the
Coronavirus pandemic which is unfortunate but
necessary. We continue to keep in weekly contact
with every member via phone or text to chat and ask if
they need any further support.
The good news is that the club is currently operating
at a maximum attendance of 30 people (age range 66
– 95) and we now have a waiting list. Over the past
year we have welcomed 6 new members but sadly
lost Barbara Hunter who died after a short illness in
December last year.
Activities over the past year have included musical performances by Coexist (Nick Leonard
and Martin Prue), songster Frank Gallagher who always encourages us to sing along,
armchair keep fit, flower arranging, music hall favourites with Andy Thompson and Peter
Fearn, talks on a range of subjects by speakers from the Co Op , Andy Minty and myself.
There are also plenty of ‘in-house’ activities on modern technology, current affairs, how to
speak millennium, a clothes swop and old favourites such as bingo, raffles, games and
puzzles, a secret Santa and finally plenty of time to chat and interact. We even had time to
raise £340 for Cancer Research and go on trips to country pubs and the pantomime.
Children from Hearsall Academy also joined us for lunch on several occasions.
Our chief cook Elspeth Bettany moved back to Scotland last year, but the kitchen team
continues to produce delicious meals led by Maureen Coulson ably assisted by Kay Ball,
Cynthia Baker, Sue Walker and Anne Thompson. Also, thanks to Dean’s minibuses and to
Annie Leonard who is my fellow coordinator and looks after hospitality. Without their help
Lunch Club would not be the success it is.

Jan Clemons

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Madeira Group.

Up to the point of having to stop meeting face to face due
to the Coronavirus lockdown, the group continued to grow
in numbers. We have had attendance from fifteen different
people with an average of seven or so.

The ‘WhatsApp’ group which we set up to communicate
with each other (had eleven members) but has now been
superseded by ‘The Week Online’ for Tuesday morning
Bible studies (which currently has nineteen members). No
doubt that when normality is restored the ‘Madeira Group’
WhatsApp will again be used.

As the group has become more established, we have been able to welcome and involve
other members of the church. As last year, we have continued to have learnt many things
from scripture, thanks to the support of David and the continuing of ‘The Week’. Not only
have we learnt more of the Lord and our relationship with God, but we have also learnt about
more ourselves as individuals.

For most of the year, for which this report is relevant, we have continued to give spiritual and
emotional support to each other. We have shared concerns about plans for church
development, shared prayer needs for others within the church community, as well as
personal difficulties and concerns. We have then put these things to the Lord in prayer. We
have seen prayers answered and the understanding of the Bible growing for individuals
within the group. We also pray for many others on a regular basis as part of the groups
intersessions.

Many have found the opportunity to look at, think about, discuss and pray about, the previous
Sunday’s service of great help, enabling them to get the most out of the spiritual life of the
church. Our discussions do not necessarily follow exactly the guidelines laid down in ‘The
Week’ as we follow the lines of thought and inspiration of group members. We all find that
these discussions enable us to explore different ways of looking at the theology involved and
enable us to grow in our spiritual understanding.

Being forced to use WhatsApp on a Tuesday morning has hindered a lot of the social
interaction, quips, and banter, which have been part of our face to face meetings. Not only
that, and some would say more importantly, we have been unable to have coffee and pray
together.

It is true to say that the meetings at the beginning of the year have given us understanding
and strength to cope with the new ‘socially isolated’ situation we find ourselves in. We look
forward to be able to meet once again in the near future.

Nick Leonard

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Music Report

Well, what a year with new musical challenges!
Since the last AGM, the music group continued to
work together providing music for Sunday Services, so
many thanks to Joan, John, Nick, Peter, Denise,
Cynthia, Anne and Annie for their regular contributions
week by week.
David continues to set us challenges – this year by bringing out his song lyric writing skills
and then asking us to write music for them. Four new songs have transpired from this burst
of creativity and hopefully more to come.
The Midlands Brass Ensemble again provided music for our Candle-lit Carol Service with
Choir pieces directed by Fran Pritchard. So thanks to Fran for skilfully coaxing and
rehearsing the choir into giving such a wonderful performance.
The biggest challenge this year has been to produce music for the Online Sunday Service.
So Nick, Fran, John and I have been beavering away each week to record the songs for
David’s Order of Service. I can’t speak for the others, but I have found it bring some
structure to the week with a sense of purpose. We all hope that you find the music helpful in
your Sunday worship and we will keep going for as long as it takes!
We are always looking to embrace new people into the music group, both vocally and
instrumentally. A modicum of musical talent and enthusiasm to worship and serve are all
that is required, so please talk to Martin if you would like to get involved.
I would like to express my special thanks to the whole team and thanks to Andy, Peter and
Uche who balance the sound each week and light us up wonderfully.

Martin Prue

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Pastoral Care Group

The Pastoral Care Group has been operating
within the community of the Church at Hearsall
for several years now. It's members make
contact with people by text, telephone, cards
and, of course, visits.

We have a core group consisting of six people
and have bi-monthly meetings held in our
Minister David's office. We take our duty of care and confidentiality responsibilities very
seriously and take care not to discuss matters regarding any one person, within that meeting
unless absolutely necessary. Only where a safety issue may have been raised, would we
report to David privately to discuss the matter.

Of course in recent weeks, due to the social distancing and other measures being adhered to
as a result of the current situation regarding covid-19, the Pastoral care group now has many
more members by virtue of the fact that we are a loving Church family who are making every
effort to make contact with one another. The ladies who work so tirelessly at our Luncheon
club, normally held on a Wednesday, but now closed since the pandemic, also have a list of
people whom they telephone every week.

So to sum up, our ever-widening Pastoral care group is happily going from strength to
strength in this current situation.

Linda Wallace

Room Steward Report

It is now just under two years since I took over this role
following the sudden and untimely death of our friend, Paul
Eaves.

My aim on taking over was 'business as usual', as all of our
room users were well established and liked and I hope I
have managed to achieve this aim. I am on very good terms with all of our users, and
regularly pop in to see groups when I can.

Only one fly in the ointment to report, as was mentioned at the end of last year, in that we
continue to chase payment for a bad debt owed by Artventurers. I had hoped this would be
in the small claims court by now, had the papers not been lost in the Salford office. New
copies were supplied in March so I will keep the church meeting updated on this.

The ongoing Covid 19 issue has caused some rearrangement regarding room use, and a
loss of income, but like many we plough on and remain positive.

There is occasional interest from new room users but when they realise we may close, long
term bookings do not materialise. This is to be expected. Our aim when the rebuild is done is
to be able to accommodate our existing groups and then maybe attract more.

Nick Lepoidevin.

24 | P a g e


Social Committee

Hello again, and another year on. Anne, Angie, Kay
& Cynthia, have as in previous years, been busy
baking cakes to raise funds, which hopefully, will go towards paying for something when the
churches vision comes to fruition.
As in previous years we have had cake and coffee mornings after the morning services in
church. The Strawberry Tea is always very popular, especially in Nick & Julia’s lovely
garden. We have also really enjoyed, after all the hard work of baking, having a stall at both
Summer and Christmas Fairs in Allesley Primary School. We have enjoyed lots of lovely
interaction, and banter with potential customers. The cards that Debby so kindly makes for
the church are also still popular. Don’t forget to have a look through them, useful also to
have a couple as a standby.
The Christian Aid Lunch is also a very popular event, and raises more money for Christian
Aid, which is added to our street collections.
Our little team thank all of you for the support you have given to us by buying our cakes and
tickets for the other fund raising events we have organised.

Anne, Angie, Kay & Cynthia

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Song and Story Time

It’s been an exciting first year. Just before the previous AGM, we started a new group at new
locations of Earlsdon Methodist Church and here at
Hearsall. Over the year, what’s on offer has kept
adapting to meet the needs of the group and of our

family, as my daughter
Florence started school.

Since October, the regular
sessions have all been at
Hearsall Baptist Church at
9:30-11am on Mondays and Fridays and now include
breakfast thanks to Margaret and Pat in the kitchen.

The lively led sessions are aimed at families with
babies, toddlers or children under 5, but we do
welcome siblings of existing members during school

holidays, trying to be flexible and inclusive to fit the needs of the group. The
regular sessions are often based on children’s books and include
instruments, musical movement, lively action songs and often a story.

The average attendance is around 17 children per session (plus parents and
carers) but we have had up to 29 children! We have 88 regular families
many of whom continue to gain support via the group’s WhatsApp group as
their children move on to nursery or school.

As well as regular sessions, we’ve had a number of special
events. Our “teddy bear hunt” picnic at Spencer Park was a
special highlight, with over 50 people enjoying the event. Many

thanks to the Social Committee for
organising the catering. We had a bonfire
night party, with food and activities in the
church before joining the free fireworks on
Hearsall Common. We’ve help “sling swap
socials”, supported by Earlsdon Methodist
church, with demonstration and lending of
baby carriers from a mini sling library,

We recently set up a “love and learn” library
so that families can borrow books that our
families have recommended, and new
books which might help their child’s
emotional and physical development.

26 | P a g e


Of course, when the Covid-19 lockdown started, our group had
to stop meeting physically, but this hasn’t stopped the fun. Our
session moved online using Zoom to live stream the sessions
starting at 9:30am each Monday and Friday. We’ve just added
a 3rd “chat and craft” session at 2-3pm on Wednesdays where
older children can take part in a suggested themed activity
while little ones might nap. This time allows pa rents to chat
openly about the realities of care-giving with the added
challenges of social distancing. It is harder to connect with one
another via a screen, but it’s vital to fill the void of human
contact and provide community support.

Going forward, we look forward to meeting again face-to-face once
the social distancing measures are relaxed. We’ll have to consider
funding over this time, as we aren’t asking for our usual donations
from members. But in the interim period, however long it lasts, we
will endeavour to keep the group going, to continue having fun and
supporting one another.

Zoe Brendon-Penn

[email protected]

27 | P a g e


Sunday School

For most of this year, Sunday School has
continued to run as usual, but then of
course, the Covid-19 lockdown happened,
but we continue learning together about
Jesus.

Usually, we have a calendar of all-age
communion services and parade services,
which is designed to be accessible to all
ages; so those weeks we do not meet.
But other Sundays, during the morning
service, the children and leaders leave the
main church before the sermon to learn
about Jesus in a more child-friendly way.

Our main group is aimed at primary school aged children. In this group, we take a theme,
usually from the lectionary and explore it through stories, songs, crafts, discussions, drama
and games. We have a group for any younger children called “Preschool Praise”. In this
group, we focus more on praise through song and dance, but always have a short bible story,
prayer and colouring. This year, we’ve found that as the ages of children has been narrower,

that most weeks we have merged the two
groups into one.

We are sad to say goodbye to Audrey who is
stepping off the rota of leaders, but we thank
her for her time with us. For many years,
Sandra has been diligently collating,
assimilating and distributing Sunday School
resources for the leaders, so it was daunting
when she announced her retirement from this
post. Andrew then took it on, and thanks to
Sandra’s file keeping has plenty to work with.
We are thrilled to welcome Orane to our team
of leaders this year.

We’ve enjoyed special times together throughout the year, including our Epiphany party and,
of course, our Nativity performance at Christmas - thanks again to Fran and Jackie for their
hard work organising this. We again entered in to the Earlsdon Methodist competition and
won.

Usually, we give attendance figures in our AGM report, but due to the Covid-19 lockdown,
the records we keep are locked safely away, so we are unfortunately unable to present them
this year.

28 | P a g e


When the Covid-19 lockdown stopped many things, it didn’t
stop Sunday School. We started up a WhatsApp group to
keep in touch with one another and every Sunday we’ve
been using it to send out Sunday school resources for
families to run Sunday School at home. Sometimes it’s
challenging not having all the equipment at hand that we
might be used to.
For example, the national loo-roll shortage meant that many
of us had to skip the game to wrap each other up as Lazarus.
But luckily there are plenty of activities each week to we can
choose those we are able to do.
We'd like to thank the church
family for the continuing show of support for the Sunday School,
especially the volunteer leaders who work in pairs on a rota and to
those members who have been bringing their children and
grandchildren to join in the fun.
We miss the church, especially the other families, so we look
forward to the end of lockdown and being able to see everyone
other again. We also look forward to the start of “forest church”
which was due to begin this spring and give the children a chance
to learn about God’s creation by getting in touch with nature.

Zoe, Andrew and the Sunday School team

[email protected]

29 | P a g e


Talking English

I think that we’ve had another joyful and successful year. Joyful in that we have fun, and
successful in that those who come to improve their English skills show signs of improvement,
and keep on coming back for more. If I were to slip into teacher mode I would be talking
about fulfilling the desired learning outcomes, and writing about the different modes of
assessment that are carried out, but we don’t really do that sort of thing. We talk, play
games, eat the samples of food from around the world that seem to appear as if by magic,
and in that way learn about the English language and its weird and wonderful oddities.
We’re fully into lockdown mode as I write this, but this doesn’t mean that nothing is going on.
We’ve had a WhatsApp group for a while now, where we communicate about practicalities,
but also where different members can ask and answer language questions. This has really
come into its own over the last few weeks. Some of the members are more in the
background in the group, but there’s a core of contributors who attempt a weekly riddle –
often with great panache, and generally send interesting questions and contributions. We
have been sharing photos and descriptions of our meals quite a lot. Some of the pictures are
stunning, to say the least. Often the meal, the table and general display look worthy of a very
salubrious restaurant offering from Saint Petersburg, Caracas, or Tehran. It puts my beans
on toast to shame!

We’re looking forward to meeting up again as soon as it is safe, and to sharing our
experiences and food once more. We’ll have to sort out a date for an International event
again too, as the last one went by the board (incidentally, “by the board” is an example of a
bizarre English idiom which deserves some discussion!).

Alan Pritchard

30 | P a g e


Technology Group Report

As I write this report we are on the fourth week of lock-
down in the Covid-19 crisis and, at the beginning of this
year, I could not have guessed how important technology
would feature in our lives. During 2019 we decided not to
make any major upgrades to our equipment, apart from
buying a Bluetooth receiver to replace the iPod dock in the
church. It was going to be business as usual and
maintenance only until we found out what was happening
with the buildings.

However, with the advent of the lock-down, although we are not using the technology at
church we have started working from home in earnest. David is recording his services,
Martin, Nick, Fran and John are recording musical items, a host of readers are recording
bible passages, prayers and personal reflections about being on lockdown, and Maria,
Frances and Seb are doing sterling work in the singing, dancing and playing department. All
I have to do is lump it all together and get it out on line and on CD. We publish our new
Sunday program ‘[email protected]’ in audio format each week and on video for special
occasions, Easter, etc. This is accompanied by the whole service in written format and a
weekly bible study based on David’s sermon.

Andy Thompson

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NOTES

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