The little church of All Saints was packed on Saturday afternoon, 22nd April with people interested in hearing “The Churches of Broadland” illustrated talk by the Chair of the Norfolk Historic Buildings Group, Dr Ian Hinton. The presentation preceded the Annual General Meeting of the Friends of the church, and the response to the event was quite overwhelming.
The Chair of the Friends group, Mrs Gwendoline Slater, outlined the aims of the Friends group, then formally introduced the speaker, who discussed the history of church building in the UK from early Saxon wooden churches to the stone or flint-built structures of the Normans. Looking at the local area, Dr Hinton discussed the “when, where and how” hundreds of stone churches had been built. He focussed on the wealth of the area in early Medieval times, but then how many churches had declined, became disused or disappeared altogether due to the reduction in population numbers through famine and plague in the subsequent centuries. Dr Hinton confirmed that East Anglia has the densest population of churches in the country, most originally built on pre-Conquest sites. He also pointed out the various aspects in which All Saints church had been adapted over the years, and alluded to the different types of stones used in the rubble walls.
His talk was greatly appreciated by the very large audience, and several queries and observations were made. Mrs Catherine Howe, churchwarden and Friends committee PCC representative, then warmly thanked Dr Hinton for his detailed and very interesting talk and support for the Friends group.
Mrs Jennifer Harvey formally thanked the Friends group for all that they did to support the church team and in raising funds to help keep the fabric of the church in good repair, and towards the management of the churchyards.
Some light refreshment was then offered to attendees, but as the number of people who had attended greatly overcame the crockery available, not everyone stayed on for refreshments. However people were very generous and £158.80 was donated towards the Friends fund.
The AGM of the Friends group was then held, which confirmed the funds raised to help keep the fabric of the church in good order, and the plans for several events planned for 2023. Anyone interested in learning more about the Friends group is encouraged to contact the Secretary via e-mail: email@example.com / tel: (01603) 715804 or review the church website: www.hemblingtonchurch.org.uk
Dates for your diary – Saturday 20th & Sunday 21st May: “Art in a Country Church” – large exhibition of oil paintings by well-respected Gorleston artist, John S. Applegate. Free entry to this exciting exhibition in church. Paintings will be available to buy plus refreshments.