Resonate Choir at St Mary’s Old Church 14th July

Free Concert at St Mary’s Old Church with Resonate

Resonate Choir who will be performing "Sacred Harp" & other a cappella music.

The Resonate Choir will be performing at St. Mary’s Old Church on Sunday, July 14th at 4 pm. This free event, hosted by the Friends of St. Mary’s Old Church, promises an enjoyable and unusual concert.

All cash and card donations made on the day will go towards the upkeep of the church.  Free parking.

Resonate Choir

RESONATE, a group of singers originally from a world music choir in Colchester, has embarked on a unique musical journey. After spending approximately 15 years in the choir, these vocalists decided to explore a distinct repertoire. Their main focus includes the Sacred Harp, a musical tradition originating in the southern United States during the late eighteenth century. Additionally, they delve into traditional Slavic songs (including Bulgarian, Croatian, and Georgian melodies) and the rich musical heritage of South Africa and other African countries.

Listen to an example of Sacred Harp music below:

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St Mary’s News – The “Summer Vibe” Edition

St Mary’s News – Summer Vibes, Cèilidh & More

Summer Vibe image, happy people with musical imagery

This Summer Vibe edition of St Mary’s News starts with Revd. Emma Barr reflecting on the joy that music can bring.  It then continues with a number of events:

… the usual listings of services and contacts.

 Message from Revd. Emma Barr

What’s your Summer Vibe?

The wedding season is most definitely in full swing. What a privilege it is as a member of the clergy to walk alongside a couple as they make their preparations to marry and then be front line and centre to witness their big day.

There is so much that makes the service bespoke but for me it all starts literally with the first piece of music. We have had allsorts whether it is super traditional:

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Planning & Development Committee – 17th June 2024

Image to support planning meeting on 17th June 2024

Meeting on 17th June 2024 the Planning & Development Committee reviewed some actions from the May minutes before considering planning applications. 

The committee then supported 3 applications (Colchester Road, Newbridge Hill & Garling Walk), objected to 2 (in Nayland Road and Queens Road) & commented on 2 (Lexden Road & Colchester Road).

Read the official minutes below:

Planning and Development Committee Meeting

Meeting held on Monday 17th June 2024 at 7.30pm in the John Lampon Hall

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Environment & Highways – 14th June 2024

Queens Head Pond - topic on 14th June 2024

The Environment & Highways Committee of West Bergholt Parish Council met on 14th June 2024 with topics including:

  • Appointment of officers,
  • Handyman update including:
    • Grass cutting,
    • Applications for the Handyman vacancy,
    • Preparations for D-Day commemorations,
    • Preparations for the Annual Fete.
  • Ponds,
  • Playground inspection, and
  • Potholes.

Environment Committee Minutes

Meeting held on Thurs 14th June 2024 at 4.30pm in SC Mtg Rm

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General Election 2024 – Important Dates

General Election 2024 – Don’t Forget Your Voter ID

Your vote matters

General Election 2024 will be the first one to require mandatory photo ID. As ever, our polling station will be in the Orpen Memorial Hall, Lexden Road, CO6 3BW. 

You can find out about acceptable forms of Photo ID at How to vote: Photo ID you’ll need – GOV.UK (

Important Dates for General Election 2024

There are a few really important deadlines you need to be aware of in this General Election.

18th June – This is the last date you can register to vote.

Did you know that about one-third of young people eligible to vote have NOT registered?  This is about the twice the amount for the population as a whole (14%).
You can register online in as little as 5 minutes at Register to vote – GOV.UK (  Even if you think you might not want to vote, at least you can keep your options open.

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St Mary’s News – The Cèilidh Edition

St Mary’s News – Thy Kingdom Come, Cèilidh & More

This Cèilidh edition of St Mary’s News starts with Revd. Heather looking at how ten years of Archbishop Welby’s call to prayer through his ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ message has fared.  It then continues with:

The usual listings of services and contacts.

Message from Rev Heather Wilcox

Thy Kingdom Come

Thy Kingdom Come - logo of Church of England annual event

As I write this, in the churches we are in the 10 days between Ascension, when we remember Jesus returning back to heaven after the resurrection and Pentecost, when we remember the coming of the Holy Spirit.

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Boudicca and the Buried Treasure

Adam Wightman, Director of Archaeology at the Colchester Archaeological Trust (CAT), will present “Boudicca and the Buried Treasure” on Sunday, 9th June at 2:30 pm at St. Mary’s Old Church.

Boudicca's Army who razed Colchester leaving Treasure behind

Adam will talk about the discovery of a spectacular hoard of Roman Treasure. The CAT found this beneath the former William & Griffin department store (now Fenwick} on Colchester High Street.  The hoard, together with human bone and foodstuffs, were found amongst the charred debris of 1st century Roman buildings. Boudicca’s army destroyed the buildings when they laid waste to the town before then marching on London. 

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Planning & Development Committee – 13th May 2024

Planning image

Meeting on 13th May 2024 the Planning & Development Committee reviewed some actions from the April minutes before considering planning applications.  These actions related to CCC’s Call for Sites and an application being considered by the Planning Inspectorate.

The committee then supported 4 applications (Spring Lane, Fordham Rd., Orpen Close & Sackville Way), objected to 1 (in Cooks Hall Road) & had no comment on 2 (The Truman & Lexden Rd.).

Read the official minutes below:

Planning and Development Committee Meeting

Meeting held on Monday 13th May 2024 at 7.30pm in the John Lampon Hall

It is the aim of the Parish Council to seek a high standard of design for all new developments and extensions in the Village.

The Parish Council will take into account the Village Design Statement, the West Bergholt Neighbourhood Plan, Government National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) and CBC Planning Policies when commenting on individual applications.

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Environment & Highways – 9th May 2024

The Environment & Highways Committee of West Bergholt Parish Council met on 9th May 2024 with topics including:

  • Handyman update including:
    • Ongoing grass-cutting & litter picking,
    • Cherry trees behind the Football Club needing attention,
    • General maintenance of benches, &
    • Painting of Youth Shelter.
  • Staffing update,
  • New shed,
  • D-Day flags & flagpole,
  • Finance to discuss quotes for practice goal, &
  • A request from the Football Club for weed killer to be applied on the Lorkin Daniell field.

Environment Committee Minutes

Meeting held on Thurs 9th May 2024 at 4.30pm in SC Mtg Rm

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Walk the Dawn Chorus 2024

Dawn Chorus 2024 with Friends of Hillhouse Wood


The Dawn Chorus 2024 walk , which is taking place on Saturday 18th May, will be led by Steve Hallam.  Organised by the Friends of Hillhouse Wood, this walk affords the opportunity to see Nightingales and many other brilliant dawn choristers.  Steve says:

If you haven’t tried this you’ll find it a rewarding and delightful experience at a very special time for the wood’s varied birdlife.

Read last years report here to see what you might hear and/or see.

It will mean an early start, meeting at the Old Church at 3:45 am (weather permitting).  You are should bring warm clothing, stout footwear, a flask of hot drink and a torch. 

This walk follows on from the recent Spring Flowers Walk.

Report of the 2024 Spring flowers walk

Wouldn’t life be boring without some variation and unpredictability? You can rely on the Hillhouse Wood guided walks to provide this – even the ones that are supposed to be the same, such as the Spring flowers walk.  This year’s walk was no exception, both positively and less so.

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