Abbey United Reformed Church, Romsey

Braishfield URC

Braishfield URC

A small, friendly and active congregation meets Sunday by Sunday for worship.

Braishfield Road
SO51 0PN

It was with great sadness we heard that Paddy Glister died on 1st May. We send our deepest sympathy to  all of their family. Paddy was very much involved with our church, especially with transporting Joan, and he was always there to help when needed.

This year’s United Christian Aid service was held at the beginning of Christian Aid Week on 15th May. The service was led by our Minister with members of All Saints Parish Church and our church taking part. It was good to see so many supporting the service.

Our next big event will be over the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Weekend. Our church will be decorated on Thursday 2nd June.

If you would like to put an arrangement in the church, please do so any time between 10.00 am and 6.00 pm, or please display any Queen/royal memorabilia you might have.

The church will be open for visitors on 3rd, 4th, and 5th June from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm.

All items used to decorate the church are to be removed on 6th June, again between 10.00 am and 6.00 pm. Thank you for supporting this amazing weekend on the life of our Queen.

We hope you enjoy your visit to Braishfield United Reformed Church.

Shirley Smith



Our church congregation at Braishfield URC send our deepest sympathy to Carole, Martin, and Callum, Andrew and all of the family on the tragic death of Susan Lord in the USA. We also send our sympathy to Angela, Lisa, Simon, and Daniel and all of their family following the recent death of Roger Farmery. We were also sad to hear of the recent death of Bernard Stagg and send Jill and her family our sympathy too.

Our Annual General Meeting on 22nd March went well with many things discussed including an item on Christian Aid Week in Braishfield. Hazel and Peter were thanked for the many years they had organized the Christian Aid envelopes to be delivered around the village and all that work which goes with the week. This was on behalf of All Saints Parish Church and Braishfield United Reformed Church. Hazel and Peter have now stepped down with Jane and Graham Bennett taking on the role on behalf of both of the village churches. Our sincere thanks go to them for taking on that role. This year’s Christian Aid Service will be at Braishfield United Reformed Church on 15th May 2022 at 10.00 am and will be led by our Minister, the Reverend Mike Perrott. Members of both churches will be taking part in the service. Everyone is welcome to come and we hope to see you there!

We will be decorating our church to celebrate our Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. We will be leaving the church open for visitors in June. Please see our church calendar for details of the times.

Our thanks go to Maggie and Jack for organising and bunching up daffodils. These were distributed to all in the congregation on Mothering Sunday with some flowers taken out to those who could not get to the service. As ever, the flowers looked beautiful.

Shirley Smith


We send deepest sympathy from us all at Braishfield United Reformed Church to Joan, Paul and family following the sad loss of Dick on 11th March.   Dick and Joan have been wonderful supporters over many years to us at Braishfield and, for many years, Dick was one of our regular lay preachers, only giving up when ill health stopped him continuing.  Joan and Dick were able to come to our Sunday worship over the last year and it was always good to have them in our congregation. We send our love to Joan and all of the family.

We were also saddened to hear of the sudden death of Alan Jones from Emsworth.  Alan came to lead our worship on 23rd January, this being the first time he had been to Braishfield, and we were looking forward to him coming again later on during the year.  We send our deepest sympathy to all of his family at this sad time.

Our Favourite Hymns Service went well on 13th March and our thanks go to everyone who came and also to all who chose the ten (yes, ten!) hymns and the readings. Everyone was in fine voice, you’ll be glad to hear!  We look forward to the next DIY service at Braishfield but we are not sure yet when the next one of these will be.

                                                                                  Shirley Smith


Members and friends of Braishfield URC participated in the Wessex Synod Consultation during our morning service on 16 January.  Here follows a slightly shortened version of the outcome.  We used the ‘Dreaming dreams’ resource. 

The dreams we shared were:

Community outreach and service: pre-covid we had been very active in fundraising efforts, adopting alternately a local then a national or an international charity each year.  Fundraising took the form of coffee mornings, sponsored activities, and others, and we have raised considerable amounts over the years.  Our vision is to develop fundraising efforts into the future to involve church and community.

Worship: everyone looked forward to returning to share in worship throughout the closure and there was much joy in being able to do so, even with various restrictions in place.  We are looking forward to the installation (postponed throughout the Covid closure) of a new sound system and loop to enable more people to participate in services.  Also, we are looking to develop our use of resources such as visual aids.

Fellowship & pastoral care: these have always been strengths of this church community.  Our church secretary/serving elder in particular keeps regular close contact with all church members and friends.  We look forward to deepening our sense of fellowship with renewed activities and refreshments after services which have not resumed as yet.

Witness and evangelism: we look forward to being able to resume activities in the community by opening the church to everyone for the annual flower festival (coinciding with the village flower and produce fayre) and other special events.  Successful exhibitions of local photography and mementos have taken place and been popular in the past.  We have welcomed local and not-so local people into the church in these ways, and been able to share with them about church and church life.

Learning and discipleship: throughout the Covid lockdown(s) virtual Bible study and discussion groups took place to include people from Braishfield and Abbey URCs.  This forum of learning and discipleship is one way by which the churches together look to develop alongside more ‘traditional’ forms.

Leadership development: along with Abbey URC Romsey we have been able to keep up to date with what is available through the Synod, but leadership is very shared.

After discussion, we considered our priorities to be:

  • Fellowship and Pastoral care
  • Outreach

We considered these priorities to be for the whole church and minister.  The New Testament reading we considered during the morning service was that of Jesus turning water into wine, and we noted that it was the servants who filled the jars.  If they had not Jesus could have done nothing!  But we all need encouragement, motivation, and attainable/achievable goals, which we will continue to review, especially as we continue to deal with and hopefully emerge from Covid restrictions. 

The place weekly worship, led by the minister and visiting ministers, has in this encouragement and motivation is paramount, by reflecting on the life and example of especially Jesus, the apostles and by prayer.

Having made a date for our next Annual General Meeting, unfortunately we have had to change it. Our Annual General Meeting will now be on Tuesday, 22nd March 2022 at 7.30 pm in the church. We would love to see you there! There will be a list out soon with all of the jobs on it, so please put your name against something you would like to do. We do hope that the list will be filled before the meeting so that then there are no vacancies. Please help keep the church to continue running as it should. If there are two or more names against any of the jobs, it can always be shared! Your help is needed to run your church for the next year, as it has been over the last 204 years.

Our congratulations go to Yvonne and Terry  who celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on 17th February. We send you both our love and best wishes and we hope you enjoyed your special Diamond Day! We also send our love and best wishes to those members of our congregation, our families, and our friends, who have been unwell recently. Some are having tests and some are waiting for results.

We were pleased to welcome a new lay preacher, to us at Braishfield URC, on 23rd January. The lay preacher was Alan Jones from Emsworth. Margaret has asked him if he would come to us again and he is! Great!

                                                                                    Shirley Smith

Here we are into another year and, although Covid is still with us, most of our congregation are back at church and observing the regulations we all have to endure!

We had our Toy Service on 5th December. I am glad to say a good number of toys were received and then taken by Mike to Romsey United Reformed Church, from where they were collected by a representative from Social Services. The toys are to be delivered to children of their choice.           

Unfortunately, our Carols by Candlelight evening was cancelled again so we look forward to this year’s carols on 20th December.

Several of our congregation and their families have been unwell. Some have had operations, some have had scans and tests, and some are awaiting treatment. We send our love to you all and hope and pray you all get well soon.

We also send love to a number of people in the village and Romsey United Reformed Church who have had Covid during this uncertain time.

Back to December now – it is just like me to flit from one thing to another! I would like to thank everyone for their support during another hard year of so many restrictions in the church’s life, but we are so pleased that we are back in our church with our church family.

We look forward to when we are all back together following such hard times in our own lives, as well as it being so difficult for the church for the last year or so. Thank you to everyone for keeping the church open. Everyone has been wonderful. Also, I must say many thanks to Maggie and Gill for arranging the Christmas flowers and the Nativity Crib scene, and to Rusty for setting up and decorating the tree. Braishfield looked wonderful at Christmas but then it always does!

Love and best wishes for 2022 to you all.

Shirley S

Our sincere thanks go to Derek Hiscocks for standing in for our Minister on 7th November and taking our Holy Communion Service.

As most of you will know, Mike comes to Braishfield on the first Sunday of each month to lead our Communion Service at 9.30am, before returning to Romsey for the 10.30am Service there. On this occasion as there were two baptisms due to take place at Romsey URC, Mike asked Derek if he could come to Braishfield as the time between the two services is limited and nobody ever knows how the traffic will be or if there will be any other hold-ups. I have put this in the magazine as I think there are some people in both churches who haven’t realised about this “first Sunday dash” that takes place and has done for a good number of years. I can say that all of us at Braishfield are deeply appreciative that it happens!

The Remembrance Sunday Service held at the village War Memorial was well attended. Our thanks go to Andy Bevan who took part in the service and also to David Webster who laid a wreath on behalf of our church.

Our Memorial Service on 21st November was appreciated by the congregation with many names read out by the Minister of family and friends who have died over the years. There was also an opportunity to light a candle to remember loved ones.

The December and January services and events will be reported on in the next magazine which will be out in February! Having said that, it will still be good to take a look back at these.

From us all at Braishfield United Reformed Church, we wish everyone a very happy and peaceful Christmas and best wishes for 2022.

How great it is to see our congregation back in church since our re-opening on 25th July. It is also wonderful to give a warm welcome to Annabel to our congregation. It is so good to have you with us.

Unfortunately, we still have some of our congregation, family members, and friends, who are not too well. Some are recovering from operations and some are receiving treatment. Also, some are having tests for various things and some are waiting for results. We send our love and best wishes to everyone feeling a bit under the weather at the moment.

Our Minister will have dedicated our new table and chairs, (which were given in memory of the late Alice and Andy Jack), for use in our church on 26th September. I hope to report on that service in the next magazine.

Our church was beautifully decorated for our Harvest Festival service, led by David Childs, on 19th September. It went well and our sincere thanks to go to everyone who was involved in any way with decorating the church. It looked lovely once again.

All of the food items brought to the Harvest Gift Service, together with any food items used to decorate the church, have been taken to the Food Bank in Romsey. Unfortunately, we were not able to have a Harvest Supper again this year. Let’s hope we will be able to do so in 2022!

We will be having a Church Meeting on 5th October at 7.30 pm in the church. We invite all members of our congregation, and anyone interested in our church, to come to this. Please come if you can and support the church here in Braishfield.

Last but not least, there are two important and lovely dates I need to tell you about. Our congratulations and best wishes go to:-

Kath who will celebrate her 90th birthday on 24th October.

Margery and Bill who will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary on 30th October.

Shirley Smith

Rivers Living Water

The charity Braishfield URC has chosen to support this year is Rivers of Living Water.

Each year, Revd Alan Clarredge goes to Zimbabwe where he is taken by government transport (Rivers of Living Water supply the money for the fuel) to every area we can reach, to restore or even install pure water filtration equipment and also to distribute aid. This covers orphanages, schools and rural hospitals.

So far, Rivers of Living Water has saved 3 million lives. This figure has been reached by dedicating 29 years of voluntary work to the people of Zimbabwe.

However, we would never have got this far and saved so many lives without our generous sponsors, who have helped raise nearly £300,000 so far! However, we need your help to desperately raise more. You can help end starvation and thirst.

Our Harvest Festival weekend went well and our thanks go to everyone involved in any way with the decoration of the church and the Harvest Supper at which we all enjoyed the entertainment by the BUMS (Braishfield Ukelele Musical Society).  Thanks also to everyone who bought the food items (and there was a lot) for the Society of St. James. The church looked lovely – a real old fashioned Harvest Festival.

Our church looked lovely for our annual Flower Festival in July.  Many thanks go to everyone who put an arrangement in the church and to those who came to see the flowers.  Lots of nice remarks were written in the Visitors’ Book.  Thank you, Margaret, for organising this once again.

Thanks also to Pat Taylor and her helpers at the Table Sale on 18th July and, of course, to those who came to snap up the bargains.  The proceeds from this are for our 2015 charity, Rivers of Living Water.


  • Saturday, 25 June

    10am-noon Church open for quiet reflection

    10am - 12.30 Summer Sale in Abbey Hall in aid of church funds.


    Sunday 26 June

    10.30 am morning worship led by Derek Hiscocks


    Wednesday 29 June

    2.30pm Table Tennis in Abbey Hall


    Sunday 3 July

    10.30am Morning Worship, including Holy Communion

    6.30pm Bible Study on Zoom


    Saturday 9 July 

    Beggars Fare: both our church and hall will host sessions throughout the day and stewards are required as well as volunteers to serve tea and coffee in the church.  If you are able to help for a few hours, please sign the rota at the back of the church.


    You can read this month's magazine by clicking on Magazine

    This week's news sheet is available by clicking on News


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