Do I need to be a Christian to go to Church?
No! Everyone is welcome at St Mary’s, regardless of whether you would call yourself a Christian or what you believe. You will find a warm welcome and a place where you can explore the Christian faith at a pace that suits you.
Will I find friends here?
St Mary's seeks to be a friendly, loving community and our hope is that you will quickly find your place within our church family, whatever your personal circumstances.
How do I find you?
More details about where we are, including directions on how to get here, are available here.
Is there parking?
Yes. There is disabled parking right outside the church or a car park next to the Health Centre which is free for 3 hours and just a couple of minutes walk from the church.
Are all of your services the same?
We provide a range of services on Sundays throughout the month:
1st Sunday of month – Sung Eucharist
2nd Sunday of month – All-age Communion (with communion received at the chancel step)
3rd Sunday of month – Holy Communion – this will include hymns and songs but no sung responses, similar to our Thursday midweek service but with hymns.
4th Sunday of month – Family Service (either with or without Baptisms)
5th Sunday of month – Variable but usually a Communion service.
Click the link here, to find out more about the pattern of services at St Mary's.
Where do I sit?
Please feel free to sit wherever you like, including the sofas at the back.
What should I wear?
There is no dress code.
How long will it last?
Our communion services generally last 1 - 1 ¼ hours depending on which service you attend. The all age family services are about 45 minutes long.
How will I know what to do?
At St Mary’s the worship leader will make clear what to do and the order of service is in printed booklets or on the screen. If you're uncertain about anything, just ask!
What kind of music do you have?
We use a wide selection of traditional hymns and some worship songs. These are usually played by either an organ or a band.
Are there refreshments?
Yes. Complimentary refreshments are served at the end of each service. Please come to the back of church and we would love to serve you and get the chance to say hello!
Do you give out communion and am I allowed to take it?
If you normally receive communion in your home church, you are welcome to share bread and wine with us. The congregation will be directed by the stewards to the front where they can receive the bread and the wine. You will be given a wafer and then the chalice of wine will be handed to you to take a sip. If you do not feel comfortable receiving communion but would like a blessing, please keep your arms by your side.
Will someone pray for me?
If you would like someone to pray for you please ask one of the clergy or welcome team.
Are my kids welcome?
Absolutely! We love kids and are keen to welcome them into our church family! There's a creche area at the back of the church, however children are very welcome to participate in any part of the service.
Can I get my child baptised?
We would love to help you explore the options for celebrating the arrival of your child. Please click here to complete a form for more information.
I have special needs, am I really welcome?
Yes. Everyone is welcome at St Mary's and we would love to hear from you if you have particular requirements that mean attending church is sometimes difficult.
Is there disabled access?
Yes, and we have an accessible toilet.
I’m hard of hearing, is there a hearing loop?
Yes. If you are unsure or need help please just ask one of the clergy or welcome team.
I have poor eyesight – and therefore struggle to read screens, is there any assistance?
We provide a large print version of the song words and liturgy. Please do ask for any assistance you need.
Do you offer any interpretation into BSL/Other languages?
We can offer this with advanced notice please contact the office during opening hours.
Are there any services in the week?
Yes, we have a midweek communion service every Thursday morning at 11am. You are most welcome to come along.
Can I come and pray in church during the week?
Yes. The church is open every morning from 10am-12pm. If you would like to visit at any other time please contact the church office.
I'm an adult, can I get baptised?
Yes, adults can be baptised! We'd love to help you explore this. Come along on a Sunday and we can begin the conversation. If you've been baptised (or christened) before, then you can 're-affirm your baptismal vows'. Helen, the priest in charge, can talk this through with you, along with any questions you might have.
I would like to get married at St Mary's - what do I need to do?
First of all - congratulations! In order to get married, you will need to meet one of a number of qualifying connections - this is a legal requirement and must be satisfied. You can find the list of qualifying connections and other useful information here. If you do meet one of these connections, or just simply want to find out more, then please contact the church office.
How do I arrange a funeral at St Mary's?
Arranging a funeral for a loved one can be a stressful process during what is already a very difficult time. We understand that you will want to arrange things as quickly as possible. It is always best to make full use of the funeral director and have them contact us to establish availability of the building and of clergy. They will need to co-ordinate this with their own availability and that of the crematorium or burial ground, so having them involved in the arrangements makes the process faster and easier for you and your family. Please note that on Fridays the church office is closed, and this is also Helen's (the vicar's) regular day off, so it is not possible to make funeral arrangements on that day.
You will always have the opportunity to meet with the member of clergy who is taking the funeral. They will talk through, not just the practical arrangements, but also any sadness, grief, pain or reflections you wish to share - as much or as little as you wish, with no pressure or expectation. The Church of England has created a website that can help you through this difficult time (click here).