St. Peter’s Parish Council Meeting

                        16th January 2018    

                        7.30pm to 9.20pm




  1. Attendance & apologies for absence


Alan Beard (Deputy Chair)                          Present                 Terry Dixon                                                          Present,

Suzanne Bullimore                                    Apologies,             Phil Dorning (Chair)                                              Present, 

Clare-Marie Burchall                                Present,                Claire Fish (Safeguarding Officer, Acting Secretary)           Present, 

Keith Burke                                                Apologies.             Anne Martlew (Secretary)                                    Apologies, 

Gertrude Chikwekwe                               Apologies,             John Murphy                                                       Present, 

Hilda Cooper                                              Present


Also present:: Rev. Michael Saunders (Parish Priest) 

Derek Lowson (Finance Council Chair)                   Apologies


1.2       Notification of items for AOB: Problems with people returning to their seats after receiving Holy Communion having difficulty passing those queuing to receive the Chalice – included under Health and Safety.


1.3       Minutes of previous meeting (15 November 2017) accepted without any amendments.



2.1          Receipts & Payments Account, which reports actual transactions for the year to date

                (Derek): Surplus = £59,125 at January 2018

2.1.1      The total surplus of income over expenditure for 2017 was £15,368 compared with £12,249 last year. We continue to look for ways to optimise costs.

2.1.2      From 1st July 2017, the Diocesan Finance Committee decided that the parishes would no longer receive interest on credit balances on bank current accounts. The interest due in respect of 2017 will he received in January 2018.

2.1.3      It was recommended that surplus funds should be put into a General Deposit Fund (GDF) or Common Investment Fund (CIF). The latter is a pooled invest vehicle - a form of unit trust - specifically set up for charities and offers a higher rate of return than the GDF, albeit with a slightly higher risk to the capital

2.1.4      In 2018 the Parish contribution to the diocese will be £20,707, representing 47.5% of the offertory income. The figure for 2017 was £23,441 based on 2015 income.

2.1.5      Forthcoming payments include replacement of the leaking hot water tank and faulty immersion heater in the Presbytery.



3.1   Inspection of the cables and cable points on the suspended crucifix above the altar: (Alan) This work   will be carried out when scaffolding is erected to do work on the lights over the Sanctuary. Alan will look into finding someone who would be able to do the inspection work.

3.2 The wall at the top of the stairs leading to the car park (Alan) The wall has been mended and new capping stones put in place at a cost of £950. Alan has suggested that the wall on the other side of the steps should also be done in matching materials while these are still available, and that the likely cost would be in the same region (about £1000). It was agreed by the Parish Council that this was a good idea, so Alan will contact the same builder to see if he can do the work.

3.3 Congestion at front of church when queuing to receive the Chalice: (Claire) There is frequently a problem for people returning to their seats after receiving communion, at the sides of the church, because of the queue of people waiting to receive the Chalice. The gap between the chairs in the centre and side areas is quite small at the front of the church, where people need to pass one another, leading to difficulty for people to pass. Father Michael will look into the possibility of widening the gap by slightly changing the position of the rows

3.4 Crucifixes for Good Friday Veneration: (Claire) It was asked whether additional crucifixes would be available for veneration during the Good Friday service, as discussed at a previous Parish Council meeting. Father Michael advised that the crucifixes were extremely expensive, but that he would have a think about whether anything could be done to reduce the queuing time during the Good Friday service.


4.1 Diocesan Year of Mission: (Clare-Marie) During Lent a course will be run for 5 weeks using the new CAFÉ resource on a Marian theme. We already have a strong Marian group in the parish in the Rosary Group. This course will offer all parishioners the opportunity to extend their knowledge and dedication to Our Lady, based firmly on Catholic teaching. The resources include a DVD and books, which will be provided for all who wish to attend. More details will  be available in the newsletter.

4.2 Youth Mass: (Claire-Marie) It was mentioned that the Youth masses and Children’s’ Liturgy all make up the work of the parish in mission.

4.3 Holy Communion Program: (Claire-Marie) This will start on 25th January with a meeting for the parents of those children attending the course, and the first session with the children will be on 27th January.

4.4 Hall kitchen Refurbishment: (Father Michael) This was mentioned by Chris during the Bishop’s visit. Although a large refurbishment was probably not necessary, given the amount of use the kitchen has, it was agreed that some improvements could be made. One suggestion was a wall-mounted, plumbed in, electric water urn for making tea and coffee, so that it would not be necessary to fill and empty the existing urn, which could be a health and safety risk. Father Michael will email Annette to ask her to contact the tea teams to see what they would find helpful, and John will discuss with Chris his ideas and report back at the next meeting.

4.5 Review of Parish Events: A vote of thanks was offered to all who helped to make the Christmas masses go so well; to those who put up the decorations, to the musicians, to the car park marshal, and the Children’s Liturgy group for the nativity play and, or course, to Father Michael.

4.6 Bishop’s Visit: (Father Michael) The Bishop said that he had a wonderful visit, and Phil reminded us that he had left us to ponder the question ‘Does the Parish Council have one goal going forward?’. It was decided that this would be an Agenda item for the next meeting, when people can put forward their suggestion

4.7 Forthcoming Events: (Hilda) Tickets for the Easter Raffle will be on sale from the 1st weekend in March.


5. AOB

Item was covered under Health and Safety



On Wednesday 14th March at 7.30pm in parish hall.





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St Peter's Catholic Church, Carronbridge Rd, Swindon SN5 7ES