Friends of St. Botolph's Church, Heene, launch April 2016

What's happened so far?


Our Lent Soup and Roll lunch on Sunday, 17th March, saw about 25 of us joining together to enjoy the three different soups on offer, along with rolls, cheese and fruit. On this occasion we were raising money for charity, and the event brought in donations of £180.00 for Water Aid.

A Scrabble Afternoon on Thursday, 21st  February,  proved a most enjoyable event and raised £80 for church funds, with the profit coming from the entrance charge and proceeds of the raffle. Players enjoyed excellent refreshments during the break between their two games.


Our Winter Fayre, on Saturday, 24th November, raised more than £980 for church funds. There were stalls including cakes, gifts, books, bric-a-brac, bottle stall, children's stall, and a grand raffle and lots of events happened during the day, starting off with a 'drop in' exercise class and continuing with singing by the Heene School Christmas Choir, a Chinese Dragon Workshop, a flamenco dance and guitar demonstration, and playing by the U3A Beginners' and Improvers' Adult Recorder Groups. The bell tower was also open for two hours during the morning and early afternoon and visitors were able to have a go at ringing one of our bells for themselves. 

The Inspired Instrumentalists': Here We Go Again concert on Saturday, 13th October raised £730 for church funds and included lively and eclectic musical items from the orchestra and from jazz quartet "The Dotted Crotchets" and ukulele and guitar group "Chords Unlimited". An audience of 80 really enjoyed the evening and particular thanks must go to I.I. musical director, Tony Tournoff; Soloists Paul Moss, Geoff Castleton and Norman Elliott, and to Cleo and Nick for organising the refreshments.

Charity event : A Macmillan Coffee Morning at the church on Friday, 5th October, raised £193.50 for the Macmillan Cancer Care charity.

Our second Quiz Night of the year was held on Saturday, 7th July, this time with the accompaniment of an excellent ploughman's supper. Thanks to Adrienne and John for organising the questions and running the quiz and to Cleo, Christine and Valerie for organising the refreshments. As usual, this event was much enjoyed. It raised £222.00.

A concert of light music - "Tunes for Early June" - given by the Community Spirit Choir and Worthing Recorder Group on Saturday, 2nd June  attracted an audience of more than 60 people to the church and raised £411. Grateful thanks go to all who took part and particularly to the choir's musical director, Tony Tournoff, and recorder group leader, Brian Crowle, for all their hard work.

A "Bring and Share" lunch after our Eucharist on Sunday, 18th March was a great success and raised money for the local Samara's Appeal charity.

Scrabble afternoons and teas held on Tuesday, 27th February, Thursday, 17th May and Thursday, 20th September have proved popular and everyone has enjoyed the two games of Scrabble each time, and sampling the delicious home-made cakes and biscuits. On each occasion,  a raffle was held and prizes were given for the highest scoring word. The three events raised more than £195 between them.

A highly successful Quiz evening on Saturday, February 3rd got the year's fundraising off to a good start, raising £252 for church funds. Adrienne and John set and posed the questions to the 30 other attendees (although thanks must also go to John Gibbons for setting some of the questions), and the meal midway through the proceedings saw everyone enjoying chilli or vegetarian chilli and rice or cottage pie, followed by a wonderful selection of desserts provided by the 'catering team', Adrienne, Valerie, Jackie, Christine and Cleo. A most enjoyable evening was had by all and there have already been requests for another quiz night later in the year!


Our Advent Fair on Saturday, 2nd December, raised over £920 for church funds. Visitors to the Fair were able to participate in a "Gentle Exercise" drop-in class, to listen to a Beginners' Recorder Group, and to watch a demonstration of Oriental Fan Dancing, as well as browsing and buying at the various stalls, buying tickets for the raffle, and enjoying the refreshments.
A 50% share of money raised by the sales of the book "Solace of War", by congregation member Shirley Dixon, has been donated to the church and adds another £75 to the coffers.

Up until mid-July this year, our Friday Coffee mornings raised nearly £550, table sales have brought in more than £115, CD sales have produced a profit of £150 and our children's art morning in June brought in £12.

A concert given by the U3A Inspired Instrumentalists on July 15th, with guests Lee Everett, swing singer, and instrumental quartet "The Dotted Crotchets" attracted a highly enthusiastic audience of about 120 and raised more than £830 for church funds. Three very different styles of music in one spectacular evening's entertainment!

Our St. Botolph's Day Fair on  June 17th raised  £966. We were blessed with beautiful weather, meaning that it was possible to have Victorian games, the children's art competition and the plant stall outside, as well as the option for people to sit outside with their refreshments. The bell tower was open for visitors and people had the opportunity to try their hand at ringing a bell. Inside there were the book stall, bric-a-brac, gifts, bottle draw, grand raffle, Pimms and strawberries, other refreshments (including Ploughman's lunches).

On Saturday,   June 10th, we had a visit from the Wealden Wind Quintet. This excellent group from Kent gave a concert of music by Beethoven, Mozart, Gourlay, Gounot, Parry-Jones and Harrold, including arrangements of British Folk Songs and tunes from Gilbert and Sullivan. £198 was raised.

Our Lenten Soup ad Roll Lunch - on Sunday, March 19th - brought in £125.

A Victorian Games Evening attracted more than 60 people to the church on February 25th, with nine teams of seven competing for the skittles trophy! Bagatelle, shove-halfpenny, floor skittles and Carrom were also available for everyone to play, and Ploughman's Supper refreshments were much enjoyed. The event - another sell-out! - raised £470.

The first FOSBCH event of the New Year was a highly successful team Quiz Night on Saturday, 14th January, when (including question mistress, question setter and scorer) 42 people, arranged into 7 teams, crammed into the St. Botolph's Room to enjoy the quiz and delicious hot meal. Everyone appeared to thoroughly enjoy themselves and the event raised  ​£330, with most of that going towards the repair of the church clock. This event was sold out more than a week in advance!


The church "Looking Forward to Christmas" Open Weekend, Friday 25th - Sunday, 27th November, together with the Music at Heene Folk Evening on the Saturday, raised a grand total of just under £1000. 
Our "Takeaway Supper and Quiz" on Saturday, 24th September, proved very popular, and made a profit of £175!
John Collins organ recital 'coffee concert' on 20th August raised approx. £140.
The "Summer Sounds" concert given by the St. Botolph's Church Choir and friends on Saturday, 16th July, raised about £240.
Our Cream Tea on Sunday, 26th June raised another £180 for the repair fund.
Our Celebration Summer Fair on Saturday, 11th June raised in excess of £940.
A 'Spring into Summer' Concert given on Saturday, 4th June, raised £188.
A successful Quiz Night on Saturday, 21st May - much enjoyed by the 34 people who attended - raised £355.
The most successful Music at  Heene Concert ever in terms of profit took place on Saturday, 14th May when the U3A Inspired Instrumentalists and Community Spirit Choir took centre stage. The final result was a profit of £1010!
A weight-loss challenge undertaken by a member of the choir came to an end on April 3rd raised £220 for the church repair/building fund as well as providing £330 for the Twins and Multiple Births Association.
Our Community Lenten Soup and Roll Lunch on March 13th raised £160. An amazing effort from everyone involved!
The table sale after the service on January 31st raised over £50.
Our soup and roll lunch on January 24th raised £95.

A change in emphasis

At its meeting on 28th January, the FOSBCH Committee decided that - some three years from its inception - a change of emphasis is necessary, and the committee will now be known as the Social Committee (incorporating Friends of St. Botolph's Church, Heene.)

The vast majority of the building work which was needed when FOSBCH was established has now been completed and, therefore, the group has largely accomplished its aims - but now there is a wider remit.

Fundraising for, and by, the family of St. Botolph's is still ongoing and, therefore, the committee will now be a social and fundraising committee for St. Botolph's as a whole.
Would you be interested in becoming a member of the Friends of St. Botolph's Church, Heene?

Whether you are a member of our regular congregation, a local resident who enjoys listening to the bells, someone interested in local history and the preservation of old buildings, someone who used to live and/or worship locally but have now moved away from the area, or someone who married or was baptised here or has ancestors buried in Heene Cemetery ... whoever you are, we would be delighted to welcome you as a Friend!

If you are interested in joining FOSBCH then please contact Jackie by email on [email protected] or complete the form below and you will receive regular newsletters and information to keep you right up to date with the latest developments at St. Botolph's.

The group was set up in early April 2016, just before major repair work on the church was started, and since then lots of things have been going on to encourage community links and to raise funds.

Many events and activities have taken place to help with our fundraising since the launch of the Friends and more are planned or in the pipeline, so do please take a look at our forthcoming events page for further details and put the dates in your diaries. We would love to see you at St. Botolph's.