Minutes of the APCM 2018



Minutes of the Vestry and Annual Parochial Church Meetings

held on Sunday 25th February 2018 at 11.30am in the Church.


PRESENT: Revd. Nicholas Gandy OGS (Chairman), and 25 members of the 2017 electoral roll, with the Revd Sylvia Lafford and 1 guest.  



The Chairman welcomed everyone to the meeting.


Apologies were received from: - J Adams, J & M Allington, M Ayers, S Bates, G Butler, J Caton, M Frost, K & E Furse, S Hughes, M Israel, M Jones, M Kent, E Kenwood J & J Lewis, P & J MacMahon,

A & J Mellor, Y Morello, C Morse, K Murfet, J Oddy, J Peckover, J & A Perkins, P Powell, A Scobie,

G Strevens, C Thompson, L& K Tseronis, I Walton, I & P Whitney.






Minutes. The minutes of the 2017 meeting were accepted as true record. Proposed by John Carter seconded by Revd. Sylvia Laffford.



Fr. Nicholas gave his thanks to the current Churchwardens for their work during the last year.

The nominations received for the post of Churchwarden were: -





Bev Lazenby

Beverly Bigmore

Marilyn Israel

Val Lynam

Joan Lewis

Joan Peckover

Alan Perkins

Karen Gees

Joan Peckover

Paul Wiltshire

Sandie Bates

Joan Lewis


The Chairman stated that he was pleased that after many years we were to have four Churchwardens and as there were no further nominations the above were duly elected.


 The Vestry meeting was closed at 11.39am.







Minutes. The minutes of the 2017 meeting, having been circulated were proposed by Paul Wiltshire and seconded by John Carter for acceptance this was duly passed, and the minutes were signed as a true account.



Electoral Roll. The electoral roll officer, Beverly Bigmore reported that in 2017 there were 153 names on the list, with 12 additions and 11 removals the number now stands at 154. She also confirmed that it had been displayed in the Church as legally required. 



Reports: -



  1. PCC.  The PCC secretary, Beverly Bigmore, reported that the PCC had a membership of 24 at the start of the PCC year. With Fr James leaving the parish in August and Les Edge resigning in December this left us with 22 members by January 2017. There were 9 meetings held during the PCC year with an average attendance of 14. Reports were received at all meetings from the various committees. There were updates on the current Growth Plan and towards the end of 2017 started discussions on the formulation of the next one. It was another year dominated by financial concerns. Copies of all PCC minutes can be found in the folder in the foyer for anyone wishing to read them, and on the website. There is also a report to be found in the current edition of the magazine. A summary of significant developments are in the Vicars report, to be given later.



  1. Treasurer. John Carter gave the following report

On the face of it, we had a moderately successful 2017 in that we spent £6,000 less than we received in all the forms of giving, SO’s, envelopes, collections, fundraising and gift-aid tax back from HMRC (over £15,000). Were we not, however, to have received an extraordinarily generous gift of £13,000 from the Feoffe charity (in the past they have gifted us around £8,000) we would have just broken even, which still isn’t too bad. Planned giving (SO’s & envelopes) increased by £2,000, as did church activities (weddings/funerals & room hire) which, with the aforementioned Feoffe donation saw us increase receipts by £8,000 over the previous year. The very welcome increase in the average Sunday attendance (ASA) to 99 (from 95) however, meant that our weekly giving remains at £10.50 per person which doesn’t compare particularly favourably with other less affluent areas. The diocesan average is just over £11.

With one very big exception, which I’ll come on to, our costs these days are predictable and under control. We get good deals for gas, electricity & insurance and our spend on admin is prudent. Thanks to everyone involved in our best use of scarce resources. As we always hope to do, we also paid in full our parish share of £70,000 which has, again, increased for 2018 to £72,450. Incidentally, if you take all the year’s giving it only just covers the parish share, leaving all the other costs (heat & light, fees, expenses, maintenance, phone, admin, stationery, insurance, churchyard, choir etc. etc.) to be paid for out of fund raising, extension hire, weddings/funerals and magazine sales. So we must be wary of thinking we can “ring fence” too many special fund-raising events for specific projects as there wouldn’t be anything left to pay the bills.

I mentioned a big exception and that is the unknown cost of maintaining the building structure and surrounding fabric, like the perimeter walls. It is estimated that one should spend around £10,000 to 15,000 per year, every year, to maintain a church and we haven’t been able to do this. Failure means that occasionally large, out of pattern, amounts need to be spent on emergencies such as the £44,000 we spent on part fixing the failing tiles on the extension roof in 2016. This pretty well exhausted our reserves. We now find substantial work is necessary on the north roof where water ingress has led to recent falls of the plaster. This is planned to be addressed soon; I had a meeting with the architect and builders last Friday, so we may have some difficult choices to face if some of the bills need to be delayed if we run out of cash.



  1. Fabric, Goods, Ornaments & Extension. Paul Wiltshire gave the report: -

Fabric and churchyard

The condition of the fabric of the older part of the church of St Peter has not been materially addressed for a good many years with the result that deterioration is now setting in to parts of the roof. In addition, the churchyard walls have received some attention, but, there remains a considerable extent which needs attention.          

Our team of workers who gallantly keep much of the churchyard in a tidy state are to be congratulated on their efforts

The Quinquennial Report listed several areas where work is required some of which has been completed namely: Clear all gutters of leaves and blocked gullies. Clear weeds from brick drainage channels. Repairs to missing roof tiles Clear vegetation growth from roof gullies and gutters

Works recommended to be carried out during the next twelve months. General roof repairs, slipped slates etc. Repairs to roof valley between vestry and north chancel roof Renew snow boards to valley between chancel and lady chapel Repair cast iron downpipe connection to hopper on north wall Clearing and repair of soakaway to south of hall Pointing to tower parapet, and repairs of lead upstand Pointing to stonework where identified (including link roof abutment) Repainting of radiators Maintenance work on pews to tighten loose joints

In addition, other items actioned during 2017 have been: - Extension roof part completed from work done in 2016 Snow guards fitted to extension roof guttering area Defibrillator and first aid kit fitted in extension foyer Gutters and soakaways cleared

North Nave Roof: Following several falls of plaster over the clergy vestry door, part of the roof and report problems with missing tiles and condition of the plaster.                                                              Choir Vestry Door: There was a forced entry to the choir vestry recently and electrical items were stolen. The dishwasher in the kitchen had reached the end of its life and a targeted collection was made to raise funds for a new one.                                                                                                                        Goods The furniture of the church is in an adequate state. Some of the pews are beginning to show their age, the condition is not helped by having to be dragged around whenever the nave of the church needs to be re-organised for a different purpose.                                                                             Ornaments The ornaments of the church have been checked against the inventory and are all accounted for and in good condition.



  1. Deanery Synod.  Caroline Dunning gave the report

March 16th 2017 at Aynho Village Hall

The Rural Dean Simon Dommett led the Opening Prayer and welcomed Bishop Donald- Bishop of Peterborough to Synod. Bishop Donald outlined his Ministry prior to arriving at Peterborough highlighting that innovative forms of worship enabled young people in particular to of hear Christ’s Ministry.

He welcomed Lay Persons to assist in Parishes as their skills befit- Pastoral, leading services, providing hospitality. He explained the cost of having a priest- training, stipend etc. He supported curates being offered to rural parishes rather than only the perceived wealthy urban churches. The priest was likened to the conductor of the orchestra. Each instrument was valued and important in the performance of a piece of music. The Church of England requires all of us to consider our talents and to use them and develop them. Training courses are available to encourage and support us. Social outreach is imperative.

He recognised that rural parishes benefit perhaps from the older congregations more, whose diehard members prefer the ‘old’ ways and change is not welcomed. He is not against the old ways if you can fill a church with them. BUT we must think of the future and encourage the younger persons. Too often the parents of today’s children know nothing of the Bible stories and the Lords Prayer.

18th May at St. Leonards  Aston le Wells

The Deanery standing committee was elected. Synod received a report updating them on the Diocesan Synod of 12th March.  Synod was make aware of local training course and encouraged to share these so people would attend and benefit from them

4th July at St Mary’s Moreton Pinkney

Synod met to celebrate what God has been doing in our deanery during the past year and to pray for his blessing on our endeavours for the coming year.  Each benefice or parish was invited to share their good news and to ask for prayer for their future plans.  Some of these are codified into Growth Action Plans and some into general mission and outreach. Deanery Prayer cards were given out for parishes.

11th October 2017 at St Peters Brackley

Our Annual Deanery service was led by Lay members of Synod, recognising that we all have a shared ministry. The service started with a reflection on a form of Celtic worship. A number of members were greatly affected by the sincerity of the worship and calmness of the surroundings. A voluntary collection for Christian Aid raised over £200for the Rohingya refugee crisis.

A bring and share supper was enjoyed in the Church extension afterwards.



  1. Guest Speakers. The meeting welcomed Jacky Mortimer and Caroline Dunning.

Caroline gave a talk on the Social Committee, and her history of being a member. She explained the aims of the committee but also asked for help in arranging fund raising events. The committee are willing to help anyone who wishes to run an event and also asked for ideas. Caroline reported that the committee had managed to raise £2,000 during 2017, for various named projects, and was grateful for the congregations support.

Jacky gave an outline of the work of the Churchyard Maintenance team who are aged between 56-83 years and work to keep the four and half acres of churchyard looking tidy. They meet on a Thursday morning between 9-12 noon and would really like to have new members to help along. A Churchyard Clear up is planned for April with the help of a team of outside volunteers.

The Chairman gave his thanks to both speakers and their groups for all their hard work.


  1. Vicars Report. Fr. Nicholas read from his extensive annual report, which has the following sub-headings: -


Our Purpose:

to glorify God through holy and welcoming worship



to nurture fellowship and faith in Jesus Christ


to share the good news of his saving love with others


Our Vision

to grow in numbers and

to increase our influence & effectiveness as a worship-centred, outward-looking,

mission-minded Christian community:


Ecumenical Relations


Contact with Brackley Schools


The Year ahead


Financial Review


A full version of the report can be found in the Annual Report and Financial Statements 2015 which is displayed in the church and on the website.




Election of new members to the PCC.

The following were nominated for election to the PCC for a period of three years.




John Carter

Beverly Bigmore

Joan Lewis

Lynne Gibson

Joan Lewis

Joan Peckover

Tony Holden

Steve Gees

Karen Gees

Alison Scobie

Joan Peckover

Sandie Bates

And for a period of 2 years



Robin Morello

Beverly Bigmore

Janet Blencowe


The Chairman declared the above duly elected.

The Chairman thanked Elaine Wiltshire for her previous membership of the PCC.



Appointment of Sides people.

Elisabeth Kenwood has stood down as a sides person, and Elaine Wiltshire, although still being a sides person will not be on any particular team but will help as and when she is needed and in attendance.


Two people have put their names forward to be sides people Karen Gees and John Watt.


The full list of sides persons is as follows: - Sandie Bates, Beverly Bigmore, John Carter, Caroline Dunning, Karen Gees, Angela Guess, Roger Hiley, Joan Lewis, John MacMahon, Philippa MacMahon, Simon Marsh, Ray Miles, Clive Morse, Jim Mortimer, Jacky Mortimer, Joan Peckover, Judith Perkins, Terry Stokes, Peter Swift, John Watt, Elaine Wiltshire.



Appointment of an Independent Examiner. John Carter proposed that M.R. Salvage & Co. Chartered Accountants of Bourne End, to continue in the position of Independent Examiner, this was seconded by Jim Mortimer and was passed unanimously.



The Vicar thanked everyone who puts anything into the work and life of St Peter’s.   



Open Forum.

  • Rosemary Leeper highlighted the amount of expenditure and asked if the PCC had considered that maybe some of the four and a half acres of churchyard could be sold off, to raised much needed funds. The Chairman responded by explaining the extensive legal commitments and challenges to this but informed the meeting that the site of the St James’ churchyard is being investigated at the present time.
  • Tom Dunn asked the question of the siting of a mobile telephone mast in the tower. Elaine Wiltshire responded in her role of Town and District Councillor that these proposals were being investigated. This could bring in much needed funds to the church.
  • Jacintha Holden commented on the number of funerals she had played at in the recent weeks, and the number of supporters of the church that had passed and wondered if there was a way in which we could “Thank” them. The Chairman responded by referring to Rosemary Miles who had died recently and that she was a faithful and generous member. He agreed that we owe a lot to many people. 


          The meeting closed at 12.45 pm with the Grace being said together.







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