St James’ Morpeth Celebrates 175 Years

The main celebrations for St James’ Church anniversary were held on the weekend July 25-26 with a dinner on the Saturday evening and a service in the Church the following morning.

130 guests attended the celebration dinner at East Maitland Bowling Club; 30 of those were descendants of the founder, Edward Close, many of whom had travelled some distance to be present for the entire weekend’s activities. Archdeacon Sonia Roulston welcomed the guests at the commencement of the evening.

Guest speaker Trevor Richards, a neighbour of the rectory and a local historian, spoke of the early days of Morpeth and showed some very interesting slides of Morpeth.

The anniversary church service on St James’ Day was a celebration Eucharist with Bishop Greg presiding and preaching an inspired sermon. A special banner made for the occasion was presented in the church and blessed during the service.

After the church service the congregation gathered in front of the rectory for an old fashioned picnic. An anniversary cake made and decorated by one of the parishioners was produced and cut by the most senior and most junior parishioner. The young of the parish had such fun with egg and spoon races, sack races, tugs of war and quoits – such a joyful occasion and the sun shone on our celebrations.

By Helen Brudenell-Woods