For volunteering and weddings, contact Mandy Button on 01233 758 254
For sponsored arrangements, contact Philip Bradshaw on 01233 758 441
The flowers at St Mary the Virgin are an important part of our little church. Placed alongside the altar, in the Lady Chapel, opposite the entrance and on the bookcase, our weekly arrangements provide a fragrant, floral welcome for parishioners and visitors.
Each week, except during Advent and Lent, one of our team of eight regular volunteers ensures that the peaceful beauty of our church is enhanced with these arrangements. Sometimes it is simply a matter of topping up or deadheading an existing arrangement (cooler temperatures prolong the life of the displays) but often it means providing foliage, flowers and artistry to create stunning displays from scratch, particularly in the warmer months of summer. Water is obtained from the butt behind the church, a cupboard holds our stock of oasis, twine, bowls and sundry items, and organic debris is put in the compost bin.
In addition to our regular team, we have volunteers who help with the special displays provided for Easter, Harvest Festival and Christmas. A swag is made and suspended above the church door, and arrangements placed in the porch, as well as other additional arrangements on the font, various stands and windowsills.
We can also provide flowers for weddings, using colours to match the bridal theme. If you would like this to be arranged, please contact Mandy Button (see above) well in advance to discuss what you have in mind. The expense of additional flowers is met by the wedding couple as a separate payment and will depend upon what is requested.
It is also possible to sponsor an arrangement in memory of a loved one or to commemorate an important event.
Our volunteers range from enthusiastic amateurs to seasoned ex-professionals, and we occasionally attend local workshops. We are keen to encourage new members of our team so, if you have ever thought about joining us, or would like to come along and see what we do, please get in touch (see contacts at the top of the page).
2017 Spring Flower Festival
On the weekend of 13/14 May 2017 the first flower festival for many years was held at the church, with the theme of ‘A Celebration of Village Life’.
A handsome apple blossom swag above the door greeted visitors, leading into the porch, where a varied and intricate display, including a gate and real produce, described a rural idyll.
Floral arrangements used a variety of inventive props to represent beekeeping, cricket, bellringing, dairy and blacksmithing. Displays featured a colourful maypole dancing with ribbons, craftsmen-built miniature oast cowls, a village wedding and an abundance of spring flowers. The church’s notable Roman altar was decorated in the style of a Roman feast, using the vibrant colours of roses, a favourite flower of the Roman world.
Two delicate Japanese Ikebana arrangements captured the light of the Lady Chapel. The beautiful architecture of the church was further enhanced by a series of pew ends made with spring flowers and hessian, bound with twine.
A fine bug hotel constructed from bricks, wood and terracotta showed the work of the Stone Wildlife Group. Several opportunistic ladybirds moved in straightaway! The vegetable animal competition was won with a magnificent potato bellied elephant.
The tower was open for visitors to enjoy far reaching views over the Romney Marsh and a special festival service was held when we were joined by the congregation from Appledore Church.
The event was widely supported and well attended. Over £2000 was raised towards the maintenance of this beautiful little church.