This year, a record congregation of 90 people gathered together for what was an informative, poignant and moving commemorative service, led by Peter Osborne.

The readings were a series of poems on the part that women played in the Great War.

The sermon told how an Abbot of Iona called Adomnan achieved something remarkable: at a meeting of notable churchmen and various Irish and Pictish rulers he convened in 697 AD (The Synod of Birr), it was agreed in the “Cain Adomnain” (“Law of Innocents”), that women, children and the old should not be killed or injured in war-a principle that has appertained until the disastrous modern times.

 The Reverend Theodore Hardy was also mentioned. At the start of World War 1, he was the priest at Hutton Roof, near Kirkby Lonsdale. In 1916, aged 52, he volunteered for the army and was appointed a Forces Chaplain. For successive acts of bravery, he was awarded the DSO (Distinguished Service Order), then the MC (Military Cross) and, finally, the VC (Victoria Cross). In 1918, he was wounded in action and died a week later.

Ex-Staff Sergeant Christopher Kirkwood carried the Wreath up to the altar.

The usual 2 minutes silence was observed, which, this year, took place on exactly the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, 100 years after the end of World War 1.

The collection amounted to £500, which has been sent to the Royal British Legion Poppy Fund.

After the service, many of the congregation stayed on and enjoyed catching up with each other over a “cuppa”.

Many thanks to the team who put together the commemorative flower & poppy arrangements for this service, some of which are shown in the photographs published above.


The return of the Leyland Brass Band had been much requested, so it’s no surprise we had a sell out audience for their visit on October 20th 2018.

The audience arrived early, and the church filled with the buzz of anticipation. They knew what to expect and they would not be disappointed. 

Performing in the simple beauty of a church in a field surrounded by the tranquility and peace of the Lune Valley, was in stark contrast to their concert earlier in October, in the grandeur of London’s Royal Albert Hall with its vast auditorium, outside the hustle and bustle of the City of Westminster.   

Proceedings opened with the Elmer Bernstein's theme tune from one of the greatest film scores ever: "The Great Escape", a catchy tune that got feet tapping. Next up Abba's "Fernando".  A wonderful  arrangement of Tom Jones' hits arranged by Tom Wyss, the band's musical director, brought us to the interval. 

Time for the band to draw breath and for us to draw the October winners of the 100 Club and the raffle.

The varied programme continued with Bruno Mars "Forget You", followed by Louis Armstrong's life - affirming song, "What a Wonderful World". "One Moment in Time" gave the audience time to pause and reflect on their very own moment in time. Cornet, horn, trombone, euphoinium and tuba solos from band members were undoubted hits. They had the audience transfixed.

The evening ended with a rousing rendition of "Schneewalzer"...with full audience participation...average age 70 plus!!!!

The appreciation was rapturous.

    Central London or Lower Tatham, the Leyland Band never fail to give a mighty and memorable performance. 


We had a new event this year and we hope that you came along to the Church for our Midsummer Celebration of Church Life in Flowers where a group of 25 volunteers created displays depicting all the different events and activities which take place in the Church.

It began with the annual Open Evening for Wenning Voices on 21st June and continued to the Special Sunday Service on 24th June which incorporated the same theme of Church Life. It was a joy to see the Church looking so beautiful for this Midsummer weekend and to welcome so many visitors to see the spectacular flower displays, examples of which are shown below:



JMW Turner in Tatham and Hornby

On April 22nd 2018, we welcomed freelance art curator Rhian Addison to visit the Church to probe the backstory to JMWTurner’s watercolour 

 “Hornby Castle, from Tatham Church”. 

Basking in the sunshine of a glorious day, decorated with an abundance of spring flowers and with a full house, the stage was set for the Church to become a superstar for the afternoon.

Rhian spoke with passion about the personal and professional life of the artist and meticulously chrishighlighted details of the painting now held in The Tate, London. 

It was a delight to learn about those features of our landscape …. The Church, The Castle and not forgetting The Bridge Inn, which play such an integral part of our daily lives. 

Below is a photograph taken at the event.


World War 1 Exhibition: Saturday, 17th March 2018

We were delighted to welcome the Mayor and Mayoress of Lancaster, Councillor Roger Mace and Mrs Joyce Mace, to our World War 1 Exhibition held at the Church on Saturday, 17th March 2018.

The exhibition, which was sponsored and organised jointly by the Friends of the Church and the Tatham History Society, turned out to be a great success with over 80 people attending. We had a large array of exhibits ranging from original army uniforms, medals, weaponry, and photographs through to some very moving letters. Thanks are due to the many exhibitors and to the local residents who generously shared their treasured memorabilia with us.

During the afternoon, there were three talks given by Stephen Roberts, Mike Winstanley and John Wilson. Stephen talked about the particular battles during the war in which local people were involved. Mike recalled the names listed in the Roll of Honour in the Church and talked about the role played during the war by these individuals. Unusually, the Roll includes two women, both of whom served as nurses. John spoke in a similar vein about the local people commemorated on the Roll of Honour in the Church of the Good Shepherd in Tatham Fells.

Refreshments were served throughout the day, including "trench cake" made by Stephen.

All in all a very successful day.

Below are some photographs of the event:



On a sunny Sunday afternoon in late February 2018, almost 100 people enjoyed the company of the members of the Levens Choir, under their musical director, Ian Jones. Singing unaccompanied, and appreciating the acoustics imparted by our lovely old Church, they enthralled the audience with their delightful repertoire entitled " Music in Quiet Places".

The varied programme contained music from the Renaissance to the 21st century. As if by a magician's slight of hand, the choir began and the audience was immediately transfixed by a beautifully blended performance of Hubert Parry's 'My Soul, there is a Country', through John Tavener's tender setting of William Blake's poem 'The Lamb', to a powerful performance of Thomas Tallis's 'Magnificat'. It was a delight to hear the rafters of the Church filled with the young, vibrant voices of the choir's Choral Scholars. 

The traditional folk group 'AdLib' brought a change of style and tempo to proceedings with two pithy pieces including 'Sheep - Shearing', bringing them a particularly rowdy applause!  A full - bodied, vibrant performance of Thomas Tallis's 'Gloria' brought another memorable concert from Levens Choir to an end.

Light refreshments were served afterwards.

Photographs of the occasion are published below:

On Sunday, 24th December 2017, the usual Christmas Eve Crib & Carol Service took place at the Church.

This year's service proved to be exceptionally well attended by many members of the local community, together with their families & friends from near & far. For example, one family had travelled from the Alps Maritime region of France to be with their relatives for Christmas. And, of course, they "had to" attend this service.

The total congregation was around 130 people.

This year, we had the benefit of the new handsome & extremely comfortable oak chairs.The recent upgrade to the lighting and the new sound system also contributed to the congregation's involvement with the service.

Norman & Ann Dawson took the service, with their usual blend of gravitas & humour.

There were the traditional readings given at this time of year, interspersed with carols, along with a few seasonal choral pieces performed by "The Wenning Voices".

In addition, the Crib figures were systematically put in their places, to the congregation's amusement, by one of the youngest attendees, Wilf, under the supervision of Norman.

To experience this beautiful old Church, so well decorated (including over 50 lit candles) & filled with so many people, singing carols at the top of their voices, was very moving.

A retiring collection plate was made available and received £600, which will be divided between St John's Hospice, Lancaster

& The Lancaster & District Homeless Action Service.

After the Service, mince pies & wine were served at The Old Rectory, by kind invitation of John & Phyllis Holt.

Many thanks to the helpers, who decorated and set up the Church for this service.

Below are some thumbnails of photographs of the Church at Christmas 2017.

(Please click on the them individually to view the enlarged versions.)


"A Christmas Cracker"

Christmas in Wennington Village with Wenning Voices

21st December 2017 dawned ~ soft & silent rain was falling

Undaunted, a regiment of helpers met on the village green to assemble a pop-up Christmas concert for the second year. By 5pm the stage was set. The tree lights twinkled, the mulled wine was warming, the mince pies were ready to tempt, & the rain continued to fall.

Undeterred families, friends & villagers began to arrive, all well rugged up to stay warm & dry, to enjoy one of the country's best loved singing traditions ~ carols shared with friends on a village green.

Carollers were welcomed with a songbook & were encouraged to warm their vocal chords with a glass of complimentary mulled wine provided by Wenning Voices.

At 5:30pm, the pianist struck up, the atmosphere buzzed with anticipation ahead of a visit by Father Christmas, & the singing began. "Oh come all ye faithful" got proceedings off to a spirited start. Wenning Voices performed "Gaudete" to an appreciative audience & "I'm dreaming of a white Christmas" provided a hopeful & happy finale.

With the concert over, friends were in no hurry to leave ~ enough time to exchange seasonal good wishes over another glass of mulled wine & a mince pie.

For just over an hour, Wennington village green was filled with the spirit of Christmas. In a flash, over 100 people had disappeared & the stage was gone. All that was left behind was the Christmas tree & its sparkling lights ~ oh, & the soft & gentle rain.

Since the local inn was historically the original location for carol singing, Wenning Voices retired to "The Bridge Inn" to enjoy their annual & delicious Christmas dinner.

Thank you to everyone who helped to make this event such a success.


On Saturday, 14th October 2017 the Friends were delighted to host "The Lancaster & District Male Voice Choir" at the Church. In spite of strong competition in the area on the night from the Lancaster Music Festival, a Country & Western Evening in Melling and "Strictly Come Dancing", the choir drew a large audience to enjoy a relaxed evening of music with a wonderful variety of well-known songs from the shows, folk songs, opera & a "Last Night of the Proms" finale.

There were times when the choir produced such a powerful sound that the air in the Church seemed to vibrate, & at other times the sound was so delicate & tender. The Proms finale proved to be great fun with plenty of flag waving and guests in fine fettle.

As always, the Church looked stunning; decorated for the evening with autumnal flowers and flags. On this occasion it was further enhanced by the new lighting in the North Aisle and the inauguration of the handsome, soft seated, very comfortable new "red" chairs.

Guests could take their ease at the end of the performance and enjoy the delicious canapés, mini sandwiches & desserts being brought to them, allowing them time to sit & chat with friends over a glass of wine.

We hope everyone enjoyed the evening and left humming a happy tune!

The Friends thank you for your continuing support.

Below are some photographs of the occasion:


On Sunday, 24th September 2017 the annual Harvest Festival Service took place. A congregation of 53 people attended this service, which included an attendance by the Church's singing group - The Wenning Voices - who performed their rendition of " The Garden Song" to an appreciative audience.Their leader, Lucy Leather, played the organ for the service.

The readings were put together by local historian Mike Winstanley, and included details of the history of harvest festivals, which have taken place for many centuries. Readings also quoted contemporary newspaper accounts of Harvest services that took place in Wray & Lower Tatham in the late 1880s.

The collection taken during the service was sent to the Bishop of Blackburn's Harvest Appeal, which this year has selected to benefit the organisation Tree Aid & the Christian Aid partner in Burundi, AgriBusiness Services.

After the service, all were invited to The Old Rectory, the home of John & Phyllis Holt, for a lunch of soup, bread & cheese, accompanied by the usual liquid refreshments. Produce donated to the Church, which was arranged around the font during the Service, was sold after the lunch.

The photograph below shows the vicar, the Revd. Mark Cannon, by the font after the service:


On Saturday, 9th September 2017 the annual Grand Jumble Sale took place at Hornby Village Institute. Vast amounts of clothing, shoes, toys, books, bric a brac and many other items were for sale. Over 100 people came and very few went away empty handed.

The event raised just over £1500 which is a fantastic achievement, and is a testament not only to the incredible efforts of Linda Kirkby and her team of helpers, but also to the many people who, so generously, donated so many items to the sale. Many thanks to all those who helped make this event be so successful.

Below are some photographs of the occasion:


On Sunday, 25th June 2017, a "Summer Luncheon" took place, organised by the "Friends". This event was held at Raw Ridding House, Lower Tatham, the beautiful home of Richard & Rebecca Sanderson.

It was a great success and enjoyed by everyone. All agreed that the lunch, provided by Veda Gardner, was delicious. All in all it was a perfect, typically English Summer Party and over £1300 was raised. Many thanks to all those who helped make this event be so successful.

Below are some of the photographs of the occasion.



On Sunday, 26th February 2017, St. James the Less Church, Lower Tatham provided the perfect setting for Levens Choir to perform their programme of: "Music in Quiet Places", under the baton of musical director, Ian Jones.

The Choir took full advantage of the Church's wonderful acoustics, bringing the spirit of this historic building alive with a virtuoso performance of some of the world's greatest choral pieces. From Gabrielli to John Rutter the Choir shared beautiful moments with the "sell out" audience, giving joy to the soul with their uplifting sound, which made the afternoon a truly memorable occasion.

Everyone enjoyed refreshments and a chat after the performance, with delicious home baked cakes provided by Veda Gardner and went home "Well Fed".

The Events Committee of the Friends of St James the Less Church are grateful for Veda's continuing support & generosity.

And finally.........to friends & neighbours who attended this Event......A BIG THANK YOU.


There's nothing to beat a Live Concert!

In Lower Tatham Church on the evening of Saturday, 26th November 2016, 12 members of the Leyland Brass Band entertained and enthralled a packed audience. The Church was filled to capacity with 117 tickets sold and over £1000 raised to boost the funds of The Friends of Lower Tatham Church.

We enjoyed a varied selection of music ranging from a march ( Death or Glory ) through a musical ( Don't cry for me, Argentina ),to Rock ( We are the Champions ). In between we were treated to a cornet solo ( Concerto De Aranjuez ), a euphonium solo (Napoli) and a bass solo (Bombastic Bombardon ).

The finale, Schneewaltzer, almost brought the house down as the Leader of the band encouraged us to dance in our seats - the atmosphere was electric and we all appreciated the impromptu encores.

We hope to make this an annual event-so, watch this space! With comfortable cushions on every pew and boasting our brand new indoor WC, the Church is a wonderful venue and a real asset to our community.    

The raffle prizes at the Leyland Brass Band Concert.....were you a lucky winner?

On Sunday,5th July 2015, the Friends of the Church group organised an "Open Gardens" event. Many of the beautiful, but hidden, gardens of Wennington, Tatham and district were open to the public.

A grand total of £1540 was raised.

The Friends would like to thank all those people who opened their gardens, visited the gardens, enjoyed the refreshments and bought the plants.

Special thanks go to Care Danz from cd-marketing.co.uk for the design and printing of all the publicity material.

Photographs of the event are published below.

The "team" who put up the marquees.

Some of the "Friends" at the Refreshment Stall.

The marquees and plant stall.

The plant stall.

On Friday, 7th August 2015 a "Summer Evening Barbecue" took place at Raw Ridding House, Lower Tatham by kind invitation of Richard & Rebecca Sanderson.

This was a very successful evening and the weather stayed fine. A total of around £1400 was raised for Church Funds.

Some photographs of the event are published below.

On Saturday, 12th September 2015,there was the usual annual " Grand Jumble Sale " at Hornby Institute.

This was very successful & many thanks go to Linda Kirkby, her team of helpers and to those who donated jumble items for sale.

On Saturday, 31st October 2015 the Leyland Brass Band came to perform in the Church. This was a superb and very successful evening and raised £1187. A photograph of the occasion is published below.

On Sunday, 12th June 2016 there was a Garden Party, organised by the Friends of the Church, held in the grounds of Wennington Hall School , to celebrate the Queen's 90th Birthday.

It was a great success, and enjoyed by everyone. As a bonus, we were able to donate  over £900 to the Church refurbishment fund.

The weather was a slight disappointment ( of course, we asked for sunshine ) but the rain had to make a short appearance otherwise it wouldn't have been a true English Summer's day! However, the rain did not dampen our spirits, the entertainer continued to amaze us all and the band played on ~ in true Titanic style ~. Although the sun shone whilst the BBQ was served & eaten, we had to wait a while for the rain to stop before the homemade puddings were brought to the table. Everyone declared them to be twice as delicious for having had a pause between the courses and many people came up for second ( and third ) helpings.

We toasted the Queen, the Duke of Lancaster; we sang Happy Birthday to her ; we sang the National Anthem and then ( there was no stopping us by this time ) we sang Land of Hope & Glory.

Certainly, it was a day to remember ~ a good time was had by all.

Thank you to everyone who helped make it such a success.

Some photographs of the occasion are published below:

On Saturday, 9th July 2016 there was a "Jazz & Fizz Evening" with the "High Society Jazz Band". This event was held in the beautiful garden of Willis & Jackie Harrison, at Station Farm, Wennington.

Everyone agreed that the Summer Supper with strawberries & cream was delicious.

The Band played for most of the night, creating a perfect atmosphere for a typical English summer evening......and the weather....well, it remained fine for most of the evening.

Many thanks to all those whohelped it to be such a success......a total of just over £1400 was raised.

Some photographs of the event are published below:

On Sunday, 25th September 2016  the Harvest Festival Service was held.

Margaret Whatmough and John Parkinson took some photographs of this successful occasion which are published below.