Following the retirement of Colin Bradley, there has been an interregnum at St. Catherine's. However here is an extract from the message read out at the morning service on 26th July:
"There is progress to report! After a lengthy selection process we have now secured a new vicar. I received a letter on Tuesday 21st July from the Lord Chancellor’s office as the representative of the Crown confirming the appointment of Reverend Linda Robertson to the Benefice of Cocking with West Lavington, Bepton and Heyshott. The installation of our new vicar by Bishop Martin of Chichester will be on Monday 28th September at 19:30; details will follow.
Linda Robertson was ordained priest in the Diocese of Winchester in 2004 and has been a non-stipendiary (i.e. unpaid) team vicar in the Totton Team Ministry since 2010. She was from 2004 until now employed as a senior librarian at the University of Southampton. During that time up to 2010, Linda was a curate and later assistant priest taking responsibility for two churches during an interregnum. Before this, Linda was headteacher of the primary school in Ampfield after having held several other teaching posts since 1987.
Linda’s first degree was obtained at Somerville College in Oxford in Natural Science– Physics followed by an MSc in Medical Physics in Aberdeen. After a spell as librarian at the University of Aberdeen she became a full time mother before starting in teaching. Linda’s interests are wide and include having been active for many years with the Samaritans, having board membership of the charity Share the Vision concerned with library access for visually impaired people and has an interest in many accessibility issue for different types of disability.
We very much look forward to welcoming Linda as our new vicar and I will keep you posted about the details of the installation on the 28th September; please put it in your diary as you are all welcome".
I have met Linda on a few occasions now and I can assure you that she will be an excellent leader and pastor."
Nico Dekker, Churchwarden Cocking with West Lavington
Our picture shows a presentation held during the St. Catherine's family service on 7th June.
David Imlach and some of the young church are seen handing over £240 which was collected by donations into the red bucket seen in the picture.
Sylvie Johnston, Chief Executive of Stonepillow, who received the money and goods that had been donated, also gave a talk to the congregation about the work of of the local charity for homeless people in the Chichester and Bognor areas.
It has been a busy time for St. Catherine's, which also held an evensong service on Sunday the 14th June at 3.00pm. It had been several years since an evensong service had been held in Cocking. After the service a welcome cup of tea was served in the Moonlight Cottage Tea Rooms.
Click here to go to Stonepillow's website.
[Photo courtesy of Tim Barley]
The Parish Council has now completed the upgrades to the village's Childrens' Playground. New play equipment, repainting and resurfacing give the playground an inviting new look as can be seen from these photos taken by Peter O'Neill on a sunny spring day.
[Photos courtesy of Peter O'Neill]
Users of mobile phones in Cocking will be aware that the service provided by EE (formerly Orange) is only a 2G one. That means that it is fine for telephone calls (when it's working), but not useful for Internet browsing or other more challenging uses such as streaming video.
It seems that all this is due to change following a planning application that EE lodged last March which has just been approved. As a result, the commpany will be making a major upgrade to the equipment linked to the mast adjacent to Hillbarn Farm, overlooking the village. That upgrade will enable EE to offer 3G and 4G services in the area.
In its application EE states that "The existing installation provides 2G coverage for EE in the local area, as well as forming part of their wider linked network. The proposed equipment upgrade would enhance the operational effectiveness of the site and would introduce new 3G and 4G services to the EE network, along with 3G services for
In addition to enhanced voice and texts services, this will allow customers to use ultra-fast speeds when browsing the internet, streaming videos, or sending emails wherever they are. By providing a "virtual office environment" there are significant potential benefits in terms of reduced commuting; which is helpful in supporting the sustainable development agenda. It also means faster downloads on the go. It has been possible to introduce these services through a minor equipment upgrade at an existing site rather than through the introduction of additional base stations in the locality."
It remains to be seen when the work will take place and how much interruption, if any, there will be to the existing service.
Cocking is set to host a Garden Event in aid of the Murray Downland Trust on 9th May 2015. Set in the grounds of Casters Brook, the event will include expert advice on plants, a tour of the sculptures by Philip Jackson, plant sales and refreshments.
All proceeds from the event will go to the Trust whose objectives are to rescue and enhance neglected areas of unimproved chalk downland in the counties of Sussex and Hampshire, revealing their richness in terms of the species of flora and fauna present. The Trust manages five reserves within the South Downs National Park and also cares for several Scheduled Ancient Monuments in the area.
The event takes place between 10.30 am and 4.30 pm.
For further details, contact Naomi Barnett on 01730 812959