Church opening arrangements.
Following the decision of the church council to reopen the
leadership team are working towards the church being able to
welcome people back for worship.
However as things are going to be very different from “normal” we
have produced this information to help people to know what to
It will need everybody’s patience and cooperation to help keep
everyone as safe as possible and to try and ensure services run
You will need to book to attend worship. Obviously, this is
completely different from normal times when we are happy to
welcome all who want to come, but it is necessary for several
Firstly, we will need to know who is attending worship for purposes
of Track and Trace; booking people in advance avoids the needs to
record details as people arrive which would slow the process of
getting people into the building and possibly lead to congestion
making social distancing difficult.
The other reasons are all related to the fact that due to the need
to maintain social distancing the number of people we can
accommodate in the building is much less than normal. We can
optimize use of the available capacity by seating household groups
together; planning in advance will allow us to do this as effectively
as possible. Also attempting to organise seating arrangements as
people arrive would again slow the process of getting people into
the building and possibly lead to congestion making social
distancing difficult. Finally because there may just not be room on
a given Sunday for everyone who wants to come pre-booking will
avoid wasted journeys and allow us to ensure “everyone gets a
turn”; if we can't fit people in one week we will give them priority
for the next Sunday they can come.
Booking requests will be made online via the church website. The
booking request window will be from 9am on the Tuesday before
the service through to 8pm on the Wednesday and we will notify
you of availability of seats by 8pm on the Friday before the
The only service will be at 10.30am; there will not be an evening
You will be given a time slot to arrive and we ask you try not to
arrive much before this as we want to try to deal with people in
small groups. You may have to queue outside the church for a few
minutes; if you do please observe social distancing while you wait.
We will have volunteer marshals who will invite you in, remind you
to sanitise your hands on entry and show you to your designated
There will be no church bibles or hymn book in use but you can of
course bring your own (but see below re singing) and there will be
no notice sheets or other hand outs.
The kitchen will be out of use and there won’t be any water
available so please bring your own if you think you will need it.
You will need keep your coats etc. with you as the coat rail will not
be in use.
You should wear a face covering if you are able to; we know that
some people are exempt from wearing a face covering for various
reasons and they will not be required to do so while attending worship.
During the service there will be prayers, readings, a
sermon/reflection and possibly pre-recorded music but singing is
not allowed due to government coronavirus rules. The service will
be shorter than usual.
We have fitted a screen on the preaching lectern so the preacher
won't be wearing a face covering.
If you are doing a reading you will need to bring your own bible
and you will be seated at the front so you can reach the readers
lectern with the minimum amount of moving around. The lectern
will be at a sufficient distance from the front rows to allow you to
remove your face covering while reading.
Following the service a marshal will direct you out of the church.
There will be no collection plate passed round during the service
but a receptacle placed for any offering you wish to be make to be
received on your way out. There will be no coffee after the service,
and we would ask you leave as quickly as possible. You should
sanitise your hands on the way out.
Should you require the use of a toilet at any time a marshal will
direct you there. Only one person will be using the toilets at one
time and the outer toilet doors will be wedged open. People
waiting for a toilet to be free will do so in the atrium by the stairs.
You will need to sanitise their hands on entering the toilet and
wash their hands before leaving. Antibacterial wipes will would be
provided to allow each user to clean the door lock handle, flush
handle and toilet seat (in that order) after use. A receptacle will be
provided for used wipes. Please do not flush them away!
Should I come to church?
We want to welcome as many people who want to come back to
worship in church as we can as safely as we can but…
Meeting for worship won’t be the same as “normal” and it may not
be what some people want.
A relatively large group of people meeting in an enclosed space
means there is a risk of coronavirus transmission that we can (and
will as far as we are able) mitigate but NOT eliminate; coming to a
service will involve an element of risk. Anyone thinking about
whether to attend must decide whether this is a risk they want to
take and the decision will be different for different people.
If you don’t want to physically come to a church service that is
fine, we are all still one Church. The circuit have undertaken that
the Zoom services and material for worship at home will continue
and we aim to make audio (and possibly, in time, video) recordings
of our services available via the church website.
If you do want to come please be patient and bear with us as we
try to navigate the new landscape. We ask for your cooperation in
the arrangements outlined above and your understanding if we
have to change things as we go along.
The leadership team.