Henry Sandon's Christmas Eve Visit to the Cathedral
We are delighted to advise that Mr Henry Sandon, MBE joined us in the Cathedral on Christmas Eve to meet and greet, and to autograph copies of Rochester Remembers. Thank you so much to all who came along to say hello. Copies of Rochester Remembers are still available if you have not got your copy yet. Phone 01634 810074 for further details.
A Christmas Carol
We were delighted to have John Bromley Davenport perform his adaptation of Charles Dickens "A Christmas Carol" in the Cathedral during the Dickens weekend in December 2008. This fund raising event filled the cathedral and was much enjoyed. Our thanks to The Hon. Clare Denison-Pender, a Trustee of Rochester Cathedral, who arranged this performance.
Since we started our Fundraising campaign back in January 2005 we have achieved many of the goals we set. Some of the projects that have been paid for are as follows:
The installation of a new harness system, for safely working at heights.
Full electrical test of the electrical installations in the Cathedral, followed by a test of appliances.
Test and repair the lightning conductors.
Removal of a problem bee’s nest.
An extensive CCTV survey of the underground drainage system.
Refurbishment of the toilet facilities in the Garth.
Works to the chair store
Design and launch of new web site
A photographic Library
Repair of cathedral pipes and gutters and essential works to the Clerestory window masonry.
Pathway relaid (south side)
External work on the mullions (north side)
Feasibility studies (necessary precursors to any major works)
Disabled Access to Crypt
Cathedral Interpretation Plan
Cherry Picker (Ex funding from Friends of Rochester Cathedral)
High Level conservation of Lady Chapel and South Transept masonry.
Exploration of the Garth by Archaeologist in preparation for the Disability Access project.
Music Outreach project commenced
We hope to have the first phase of the Interpretation Plan that has been funded by Heritage Lottery Fund in place by Easter 2009.
As part of our fund raising effort for the cathedral, the congregation have got together to produce a book called “Rochester Remembers”. The concept was partly started to commemorate the 70th anniversary of WWII and partly to tell the fascinating stories of ordinary local people during that time.
“Rochester Remembers” is all about the lives and experiences of people during the war, as told by themselves, who now live in Rochester. As you can imagine they are fantastic memories, some heart breaking, some amusing, but all interesting and thought provoking. Photographs are included.
The book goes to print during October and we hope to have it ready for sale at £10 per copy by the end of November. Mr Henry Sandon kindly wrote the Foreward to our book, he is a Patron of the Evacuee's Society. He say's, "It is nice to be invited to write a foreword to Rochester Remembers. As a Londoner my pre-war memories of Kent were limited to an occasional steamer trip to Margate and my wartime years were spent as an evacuee in Buckinghamshire. Life as a “Vaccy” could be like the curate’s egg (even curates only got one egg a week on the ration), we missed our parents and it was very difficult to live with strangers.
I am a patron of the Evacuees Association, together with Michael Aspel, the long time presenter of the BBC Antiques Roadshow and This Is Your Life, and we hear some heartbreaking stories of the treatment of some vaccies. But we survived and I became a little cog in the wheels of the Royal West Kents in Shorncliffe Camp, wangling my way into the South East Command Concert Party, which was a little like “It Ain’t ‘Arf ‘Ot Mum”. As the resident baritone I must have sung in most towns in Kent and give a belated apology to any who suffered.
In recent years I have been closely related to Rochester through my son David singing in the Cathedral Choir and I have even sung a few times with the choir myself. So I wish all the best to the book of Anne and John Sears and to the great City of Rochester.
Henry Sandon M.B.E.
The book will be on sale at Baggins Bookshop and The Visitor Information Centre in Rochester High Street, and at Rainham Bookshop as well as here at the Cathedral in the shop and from the office. Click here to order
If you have any difficulty in obtaining the book, please contact the Development Office in Garth House on 01634 810074
Please note that £1.50 postage and packing will be added to postal orders.
Grand Auction in Kings School Hall, Rochester
SATURDAY 15TH NOVEMBER 2008
The auction was great fun and we raised over £2,000!
Our thanks go firstly to John and David Sandon for the auctioneering. To Dr Ian Walker and Mr Kevin Jones of Kings School for kindly allowing us to use their facilities, and to all the helpers on the evening, Betty Trollope, Pam Gonsalves, Felicity Osborne, and the Kings School boys that made excellent runners!
Last but not least our very grateful thanks go to all the people that donated sale lots.