As most of you will be aware, Rev Clive is leaving us at the end of the month to take up a new post in Lincolnshire. We are all very sorry to be preparing to say goodbye, although we will of course be wishing him well in his new post. There will be a farewell party for Clive on Saturday 22nd February at 6pm in Shorwell Village Hall, which will be a bring and share buffet party, and the bar will be open on the night for liquid refreshments.

We are all so sad that this inevitably leads to a further period of interregnum in the church, and hope that Clive’s successor will be chosen and appointed more swiftly than Clive was himself! There will be a few changes in the future with regard to the frequency of services at Shalfleet, with one service per month being lost. However, there will be a rotating Holy Communion at 10am on a Tuesday to make up for this shortfall, which will take place at one of the four churches (Shalfleet, Calbourne, Thorley and Newtown) on a rota basis. Details will appear on our church website.

Our new Archdeacon, Rev Peter Leonard, is acting as promptly as is possible to help smooth the period of transition, and as soon as we hear more on the appointment of Clive’s successor, I will let you know.

Meanwhile, work is carrying on apace on the big East window, and many of you will have seen the scaffolding up. The stonework was in even worse condition than we had thought, so it is going to be a bit of a slog to get things back to their former glory, but we are working on it!

The experiment of holding services in the Hall during this period has been a great success, and I know that many of you have enjoyed the warmth and relative comfort of our 11am services there. Who knows, perhaps we have started a precedent!

Finally, the much talked about need for extending/improving the parking at the Village Hall is firmly back on the agenda. The PCC and members of the Hall Committee met up in the wind and rain last Sunday to pace out the area we hope to be resurfacing, and once this has been costed up, and permission obtained from the Diocese, we will hopefully be in a position to take this forward.

Onwards and upwards!