Friends of Midhurst Parish Church
A Church at the Heart of the Community
Midhurst Parish Church has played a central role in the life of Midhurst for more than 800 years, bringing church and community together. As well as providing regular worship, each year it welcomes families from the town to mark the stages of life’s journey at christenings, weddings and funerals. Our local schools hold their annual carol services in the church, supported by our vicar and youth minister. As a listed building it has a dominant presence in the Market Square Conservation Area that is so attractive to tourists and residents alike.
The church’s civic role continues to be increasingly important through the Remembrance Sunday service and other events like carols for Midhurst’s Street Party and our Easter and Christmas services. The MADhurst summer festival was founded by our previous vicar and we continue our support and participation in many of the events. Social events bring many people into the church for concerts and performances.
HOW DO FRIENDS HELP?
The running cost of our parish is around £90,000 p.a. and these costs are funded entirely by our small, but growing, congregation, without any outside support. In addition to these costs, however, there are significant building maintenance and improvements to fund. Our listed building is rich in history and holiness, but it is also extremely expensive to maintain. Over the years, we have absorbed major costs: the retiling of the church spire, new central heating, and changes at the front entrance including a glass door and accessible toilet. It costs a lot to keep an old building maintained, watertight and operationally efficient and these items have fully absorbed our reserves. This puts at
risk our ability to maintain our building, let alone implement any ideas about making our church more flexible for worship, social and community use. It is for this reason that we seek the support of Friends.
The Friends of Midhurst Parish Church was launched in 2015, to enable individuals, businesses, and retailers in the town to support the upkeep of the church building, even though they may not be churchgoers themselves. The annual subscription is held in a dedicated account and used only for the maintenance and upkeep of the fabric of the building. So far, nearly £20,000 has been raised through the Friends and it is very much appreciated.
HOW TO BECOME A FRIEND
Any business or individual wanting to become a Friend should contact the Parish Office for information.