Please explore 'The Land', this website, and...
The website and magazine for 'The Land of The Twelve Churches' across our fifteen villages of Alvescot, Black Bourton, Bradwell Village, Broadwell, Broughton Poggs, Filkins, Grafton, Holwell, Kelmscott, Kencot, Langford, Little Faringdon, Radcot, Shilton, and Westwell...
All in the West Oxfordshire Cotswolds, England
Traveller, Visitor, Reader, Pilgrim...
You are welcome in 'The Land' at any time.
PARISH PUMP magazine is published every two months, and is available to distribute through every letterbox in our 15 villages.
(If you do not get one, please email firstname.lastname@example.org)
Parish Pump is also available to view on this page, and is best read on a PC or laptop (the rest of the site is fine on mobiles.)
We welcome all and any ideas and comment on any subject
If you wish to send a message to PARISH PUMP, please see the 'Contact' page from the menu
The latest published issue of Parish Pump is:
December 2022 & January 2023
If you live in the Land of the Twelve Churches, you will probably receive a paper copy. EVERYONE can read it online...
To read PARISH PUMP magazine online (latest & back issues),
or to see all the other website news, views, poetry & more...
... Please use the menu at the top of the page, or go HERE
Everything works on all devices, except reading the magazine is best on a PC or tablet
The December 2022 & January 2023 issue of Parish Pump is the last that will appear. The editorial on page 3 of the Dec/Jan issue begins to explain why, and also hints at what will happen next.
This website will continue, and more explanations and excellent plans will be unfurled here... So do please come back!
So many readers still ask 'Where has the Church gone?', that it seems sensible to write something here on the website, rather than take up space in the magazine. You will find it at the foot of the 'About' page from the menu above, or HERE
Please explore the PARISH PUMP website using the regular menu at the top... Not only can you read the latest issue of the magazine, but there is also lots of latest (and older!) News and Views to explore. And, in addition, here below are some 'specials'...
The Land of The Twelve Churches: Reflections in the Landscape.
Fresh photographs of all of our churches, and a fascinating insight into how they looked in The Time of Corona. Published by Parish Pump & The Filkins Press. Inspect (and buy!) a copy at Cotswold Woollen Weavers in Filkins, or see more: HERE
Review from a current churchwarden: "... beautifully put together and presented with stunning photos and a thoughtful foreword. It should be widely promoted around the Benefice and I’m sure will strike a chord with many, both church-goers and non-churchgoers alike."
Happy New Year, Everyone...
Our favourite local photographer, Tom Barry, sent us this great image... and I thought.: 'That's New Year 2023!'
A familiar landscape, with familiar pieces of our past in view, but some things are clearly broken... And the ground is waterlogged and looks difficult to traverse, and we are anyway looking through a veil of stuff that makes the going look even more difficult...
And yet, and yet... The sun is shining, the grass is green, and the future beckons!
So, let's get on with things, and Happy New Year to one and all!
Mrs Simpson's Carpet-beater: The Yapp family & friends, Kencot & Broadwell villagers, and the irreplaceable John Cambridge save St George's Church in this splendid tale of skulduggery: HERE
Helen Mary Squire: The text of a eulogy, with photographs, given by Helen's nephew, Pip Squire, on Saturday 4th December 2021: HERE
Christmas windows: The Advent windows in Alvescot 2021: HERE
Christmas with Candles: Evocative photographs from Chrissy Tinson of the Carol Service candles in St Matthew's Church, Langford: HERE
A Christmas fancy! Lovely Anne Hichens, of Langford had a delightful, and (as she put it) 'felicitous fancy'...
'Tis the season of lists and dried-fruitfulness.'
Who was Amelia Carter? Several local villages, both in and just outside 'The Land of the Twelve Churches' (including Clanfield, Filkins, and Kencot) have village halls which are also known as 'Carter Institutes'. Find find out why, and find out who Amelia Carter was: HERE
Filkins Theatre Review 2021: There was a full house in the Village Hall on 27th November for a review based on sketches rifled from the BBC archive. One of the highlights was Leroy & Lynne tangoing beautifully. See a cobbled-together tribute (and also Peter Sangston singing): HERE
Flowers & Fireworks: Little Faringdon once again punches above its weight with a great Harvest Festival, and a quite stupendous Bonfire Night party. See a write up in the December 2021 & January 2022 issue of Parish Pump ('Read Parish Pump' in the top menu), and you can also find additional photographs HERE
Langford Village Day 2021: The village turned out in style in September... There's a write-up from Richard Kemp in the December 2021 & January 2022 issue of Parish Pump ('Read Parish Pump' in the top menu), and you can also find additional photographs HERE
St Mary's gets a new lid! St Mary's church, Westwell is an ancient building, and (as all others in 'The Land of the Twelve Churches') needs constant attention. Moray Angus, the churchwarden, recently led a project to restore the wooden shingle-clad spire. See the photographs HERE
In Remembrance 2021: In 2018, to mark the centenary of the end of the First World War, The Swinford Museum together with the (at that time) churchwardens and PCC of Broughton Poggs with Filkins, and the Filkins Press researched, edited, and published a written record of those from the village who had served their country during the war: both those who returned and those who did not.
That record, '100 Years Later', can now be seen online HERE
The same story could be told of every parish in The Land of The Twelve Churches. Let us remember all those who served.
"Farewell from The Farleys": Malcolm & Tessa Farley are on the move after almost 40 years in Alvescot. Read Tessa's moving account of life in 'The Land of The Twelve Churches', as she and Malcolm bid us all adieu: HERE
"The Westwell Bridleway" People often wonder about the Bridleway which runs from the pond area in the centre of Westwell and goes up through the Old Rectory, past the Glebe House and on to the Cirencester road. Georgie Fox explains how it all came about: HERE
"The Government Inspector". On 17th July, Filkins Theatre presented Gogol's satirical masterpiece about corruption, as "an outdoor rehearsed reading in costume" . This has become a bit of an annual bash, made particularly welcome this year as an early opportunity to meet together for a party. For a review of the play: HERE
Which way for Oxfordshire? In the 'June & July 2021' issue of Parish Pump, there is a diary item outlining the CPRE briefing about the Oxfordshire Plan 2050. The article offers further information... HERE
Along the road near Westwell. A road, a wide verge, some trees, a hedge, and 90 seconds to watch the film...
Nothing happens, just a peaceful interlude in the Cotswolds and an example of the simple pleasures of life in The Land of the Twelve Churches.
Around the churchyard. Many people visit churchyards researching their ancestors, but memorials moulder, sometimes dangerously, leaving churchwardens and PCCs with various management concerns. Here is a report about one local churchyard, with suggestions for a way forward.
The Filkins Tornado. For those who weren't here... Yes we really did have a tornado! 17 years ago in March 2004. It was an extraordinary event, written up with great verve by some young storm-chasers. Here are their 16 pages of explanation and photographs (with Filkins itself starting on page 8.)
A long time ago? Maybe not! Julian Choyce, of Filkins, looks back 35 years to meeting Ann on VSO in Zimbabwe, and reflects on what they learned then that has a relevance in lockdown today.
On top of the world! Or at any rate on top of the scaffolding, while the bellcote at St Peter's Church, Filkins was being restored a few years ago. Have a look at this great 360 panorama film of the village... As you've never seen it before! Plus a second filmlet of the new bellcote stonework.
Who's for Tennis? Colston Tennis Club is a small, friendly club right here in Broadwell in The Land of The Twelve Churches. Nick Goodenough says: "Post-corona, why not come down for a game?'
One year, twelve pictures... James Lindsay of Woodside House, Shilton took a photograph of Astall Barrow every month for a year. A wonderful record of 'that mound by the A40 you always meant to explore.'
Now you can! See James' pictures HERE
The sermon given by Colin Fletcher, the Bishop of Dorchester, at the service on Wednesday 6th October 2004 when Harry MacInnes was inducted as Rector of the Shill Valley & Broadshire Benefice. The sermon is published here in commemoration of the Bishop's retirement during October 2020. (First published in Parish Pump November 2004) HERE
'Around Our Land'. Tom Barry and others share their views of The Land of the Twelve Churches in this Time of Corona. HERE
(Do join in: please email your photographs for inclusion)
'It's a Knock-Out' & 'The Pantomime Horse Races' Here's three films (courtesy of Ruth Henderson) of great afternoons in Filkins 30 years ago...
When worlds collide: watch the foxes, and badgers, and hares cavorting in Chris Hanks' garden
The Flood of July 2007: remember that very wet weekend? Watch this film made in Shilton, and shudder!
Lockdown Lens: nearly 400 photographs in and around our Land of The Twelve Churches from Giles Edwards
The Empty Pulpit: 'Harry (and Margot)' in Lockdown: Here gathered together for second viewing (and for those who missed them first time round), are all 50 of the films made by Harry MacInnes & Margot Hodson between Mothering Sunday 22nd March 2020 & Easter Sunday 4th April 2021: HERE
Must Rhodes Fall? Should Rhodes Fall?
Our very own Donal Lowry takes a cogent view
May 2021 update: Oriel College has announced Rhodes will NOT Fall... So far, success!
"The past was not a rehearsal for the present."