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Church News & Events


The centenary of the end of World War 1 has inspired so many people in our Herefordshire villages and, of course, Cusop is one of them. In the nave of St. Mary's Church, Cusop, there is a war memorial listing eight servicemen from Cusop who lost their lives fighting during the First World War. This is a significant number in a relatively small village and it’s appropriate that these brave men, and all those millions of others who lost their lives, should be remembered in a very special way during this centenary year

We’re so very grateful to Penny Winter for co-ordinating the “Poppy Project” which has inspired so many people, young and old, near and far, to make hundreds of poppies from various materials. There are crocheted poppies from the WI, Mothers' Union and other local groups and individuals. There are beautiful poppies made from fabric, and paper poppies made by children at Messy Church and Hay School. Penny even received a parcel of poppies from Australia! Such has been the enthusiasm of the project!

On Saturday 20th October, a band of helpers climbed ladders and hung the poppies all over Cusop Church. It's a wonderful and breath-taking display! We’ve already had hundreds of visitors and numerous poignant comments in our Visitors’ Book about the fabulous display and memories of relatives lost in the Great War. If you have not seen the display, then please do visit Cusop Church, you will not be disappointed.

At our United Benefice Remembrance Service at Dorstone Church, the names of those eight servicemen from Cusop were read out, alongside others from our parishes who lost their lives. It was a moving occasion and a reminder of the fragility of peace in our world today.

On 28th October, the clocks changed and we re-started “Tea at Three” at Cusop Hall. We had no idea how many people would come but we needn’t have worried because there was a fantastic turn out and we had to put up extra tables. With ages ranging from 2 years to 92 years, there was a really friendly, family atmosphere. If you weren’t able to come, do join us at our next “Tea at Three” on Sunday 1st December.

A Very Happy Christmas to Everybody!

The weeks leading up to Christmas are going to be very special at Cusop Church as we have so many exciting events including an evening of “Great War and Home Front Stories and Poems”, “Christmas with the Springfield Consort Chamber Choir” and our wonderful “Carols and Candles Service” which everyone loves! Please make a note in your diary of the dates below.

Diary Dates

Poppy Display: This continues right up to Christmas. It’s proving a huge success with hundreds of visitors admiring the wonderful display of poppies.  It's a fabulous and breath-taking display! We do hope as many people as possible will come and enjoy seeing everyone’s talented work. 

Sunday 1st December: “Tea at Three” - 3.00pm to 4.30pm at Cusop Village Hall. Meet neighbours and make friends in a warm and very relaxed atmosphere.. Free entry! Please do join us.

Friday 7th December:  The Friends of St. Mary’s and Cusop History Group present, “Great War and Home Front Stories and Poems” at Cusop Church at 7.00pm. This promises to be a moving and memorable evening. Entry £5.00 to include glass of wine and nibbles. Please contact Sue (01497-822523) or Celia (01497-820396) for tickets.

Sunday 16th December, St Mary's Church, Cusop at 3.00pm: Christmas with the Springfield Consort Chamber Choir”. Don't miss this wonderful chamber choir who will be singing a selection of pieces including some works composed by Thomas Tallis. The concert will be followed by mulled wine and mince pies. Tickets £5.00 (not including wine) available from Celia (01497-820396) or at the door.

Sunday 23rd December: “Carols and Candles” at 4.00pm. This is our most popular service of the year - loved by young and old. It's a short, family-friendly service and our beautiful church will be lit up by candlelight. 

Christmas Day: Family Communion Service at 9.30am - the perfect beginning to Christmas Day!


Cusop Churchyard

Our last Taskforce Day of the year coincided with “Storm Callum” but that did not dampen or blow away our spirits as we still greatly enjoyed coffee and cake in the vestry, tidied up the church and did some work under the yew trees. However, our more astute volunteers (John G, David and John H.) wisely went up the previous Wednesday when there was glorious sunshine and did masses of work! A very big thank you to them and thank you to all our volunteers who have helped during the course of the year. The churchyard continues to look fabulous and attracts admiring visitors on a daily basis.

Churchyard Flowers and Christmas Wreaths

As you know, we no longer allow artificial flowers in the churchyard, “Fresh flowers are encouraged as the symbol of the gift of creation and the brevity of life.  Artificial flowers, e.g. silk or plastic flowers, are inappropriate”. (Diocesan churchyard regulations)  It’s wonderful how everyone has taken this on board and the PCC would like to sincerely thank you for this.

Last year, our Taskforce Team filled TEN black bin bags with Christmas wreaths made from oasis! All these bags had to be put in landfill which was very upsetting for the PCC and our churchyard volunteers. Therefore, we are now asking if you can please purchase or make wreaths that do not contain oasis or place a spray of Christmas flowers on your loved one’s grave as an alternative. These flowers can then be put on the compost heap after Christmas and we will not be adding to landfill.

Thank you for helping to keep our churchyard beautiful and for being kind to nature.


Church Book Stall

The book stall is proving a huge success and is providing our local community and visitors with a fantastic range of books. I’m regularly updating it and it’s evident that people are regularly buying books and this is providing a steady flow of cash in the donation box. There have been numerous anonymous donations of books left up at the church and on my doorstep. Whoever you are – thank you! It’s greatly appreciated and the book stall is another way of sharing the church building with the community. We often have visitors who just like to sit and enjoy the stillness and tranquillity inside the church and I like to think that the book stall is an extension of this peacefulness.  There have been several occasions when I have arrived at church and found someone sitting in a pew quietly reading a book from the book stall.

For any further information about church activities  please contact the Churchwarden, Celia Cundale at celiacundale@aol.com or phone 01497-820396.

Poppy display approaching altar. Poppy display approaching altar.
More beautiful handmade poppies! More beautiful handmade poppies!
Poppies made from fabric. Poppies made from fabric.
Jemima Phillips, Royal Harpist, performing at Cusop Church. Jemima Phillips, Royal Harpist, performing at Cusop Church.
A wonderful evening's entertainment! A wonderful evening's entertainment!
Thanksgiving Tree with over a hundred messages. Thanksgiving Tree with over a hundred messages.
Taking a rubbing at our Annual Community Picnic. Taking a rubbing at our Annual Community Picnic.