READERS of The News will remember that we wrote in this slot last year about our hopes to establish a Garden of Remembrance in the beautiful churchyard at St Mary’s, Warsash.
The good news is that, thanks to the generosity of many, it is now complete, and we plan to dedicate the garden during our 10am service on Sunday, July 9.
Most of the work was done by a local company, Helyers, and an army of volunteers completed the task.
It has involved clearing the flat ground at the east end of the churchyard, and planting grass and plants that will encourage wildlife and insects.
We then laid paving in the shape of a Celtic Cross, and finished it off with a central circular bench and a flowering pear tree.
We hope this will be a natural, quiet place where ashes can be interred, and where families can sit in peace to remember their loved ones.
Because we don’t intend to use memorial tablets within the Garden of Remembrance, so it can be used far into the future, we’ve also bought a lovely Book of Remembrance which is kept inside the church.
This is displayed in a wonderful wooden cabinet, hand-crafted by another local person, Gavin Pettit.
He also used the wrought-iron work from the old choir stalls for a stand, providing a fitting mix of the old and new.
The Book of Remembrance will be left open to display the names of those laid to rest in that particular month – so the names of those buried or interred in August will be on display from August 1.
The names of parishioners’ loved ones, or others who are associated in any way with Warsash, can be entered into our book for a minimum donation.
And each name will have a symbol next to it, to indicate if they were laid to rest in our churchyard, in the Garden of Remembrance, or elsewhere in the world.
If you would like to join us on Sunday, July 9, when our garden will be dedicated as part of our Communion service, you would be very welcome.
But do feel free to enjoy it and our beautiful church at any other time too.
n ST MARY’S CHURCH is in Church Road, Warsash, SO31 9GF.
Sunday services are at 8am, 10am and 6.30pm.
To contact the parish office call 01489 570846 or visit stmarywarsash.org.uk.
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