The website for events at St. Peter & St. Paul's Church, Maperton
The website for events at St. Peter & St. Paul's Church,Maperton

A look back at our past events


The 2017 Christmas Gallimaufry was held on

Saturday 9th December at 6 pm.

Heavy rain held off and a good number came to this year's event: Simon Clarkson played the organ and William Slogrove provided a choir.  Readings included "Greek meets Greek", Bill Bryson's "Deck the Halls" and extracts from "No Sportsman at All" by J. K. Stanford.

On 5th August, a packed church listened intently as General Bucknall gave a possibly controversial,  but undoubtedly informed and authoritative, retrospect of the Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns - what we got right, what we got wrong, with some personal insights and a look at the consequences of action.  He went on to review where we are now: Syria, the Middle East, Russia, NATO, BREXIT etc.; he looked at the nature of the threat (including cyber attacks, mass migration etc.), the demands on Government and the West – and encouraged the audience to consider the consequences of inaction.  


 A former Director Counter Terrorism at the Ministry of Defence, General Bucknall served in Iraq and for nearly two years in Afghanistan where he was the Deputy Coalition Forces Commander and Commander British Forces: he retired from the Army in 2013.


The Lecture was supported by a display of contemporary small-arms from the Small Arms School Collection at Warminster: this included amongst other things sub-machine guns and a 40mm grenade launcher.  We were also supported by a Royal Marines presence from Commando Helicopter Force based at Yeovilton.


The Lecture was generously sponsored by The King's Arms at Charlton Horethorne.


The proceeds of the Lecture were divided equally between Maperton Church and Combat Stress, the charity selected by General Bucknall.


The 2016 Christmas Gallimaufry was held on

Saturday 10th December at 6 pm. 


Simon Clarkson played the organ and William Slogrove provided a choir.  Readings included Bill Bryson's "Mysteries of Christmas" and extracts from "Arthur James & I" and "The Wind in the Willows".

The 2016 Nicholson Lecture



The break-through: British cavalry capture a train, August 1918

An illustrated lecture by

Allan Mallinson

Late 13th/18th Royal Hussars (Queen Mary’s Own)

in aid of

Maperton Church and ABF The Soldiers’ Charity.


A church-full of guests, on a delightful sunny evening, enjoyed a fascinating 2016 Nicholson Lecture, delivered by Allan Mallinson.


Before Third Ypres (“Passchendaele”), beginning on the 31st July 1917, Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig told his army commanders that “opportunities for the employment of cavalry in masses are likely to offer”.  In the three and a half months of battle, however, even the infantry stuck fast in the mud.


In this, the centenary year of the Battle of the Somme, Allan Mallinson, former soldier, author of the Matthew Hervey series of cavalry novels, and The Times historian of the First World War, explored what the British army thought about cavalry before 1914, and how it modified its views – or otherwise – as the war went on.  He explained the impact of aerial reconnaissance, and of the belt of ruined terrain that, for much of the war, demarcated the ground held by the Allied and the German armies, so that the role of the cavalry became severely restricted.


The Lecture was supported by a modest static display of small arms of the period, generously laid on by the School of Small Arms Museum.


The Lecture was sponsored by The King's Arms at Charlton Horethorne and by Setfords, Solicitors.

Christmas Day 2015: 11.00 Holy Communion


Yet again we were blessed with Simon Clarkson as our organist and a choir including Liz Holbrook and Frances Eustace, making for a traditional and family-friendly celebration: they sang an arrangement of Away in a Manger, as well as providing descants throughout, and the Gloria was sung to Merbecke.  The retiring voluntary was Bach's In dulci jubilo, and the congregation was piped out of the church by Frances with a Christmas medley played on medieval bagpipes.

A Christmas Gallimaufry - 12th December 2015

It was indeed a sturdy congregation that ventured out for this, as the church echoed to "the rude wind's rude lament" in the surrounding trees, and "Good King Wenceslas" was in fact the opening carol! 


This was an hour-long service of carols that you could really sing alternating with secular and religious readings:  we welcomed back William Slogrove and the 25-strong Sherborne Singers, and Simon Clarkson was our organist.


The readings included "A.D. 0"from The Dogsbody Papers, the opening chapter of Doctor Syn, Felix Dennis's "An Older England" read by Nicola Tatham and extracts from "Badger Bill's Winter Cruise" by BB. 


The church had been lovingly decorated by ladies from the village, and with almost 75 people attending, the spirit of Christmas was evident.


Gallimaufry: (1) a hodgepodge; jumble; confused medley, (2) a ragout or hash


Origin: 1545–55; < Middle French galimafree - a kind of sauce or stew, (< Middle Dutch moffelen  to eat, nosh)

Taizé service on Advent Sunday - 29th November

The Pilgrims Singers led a Taizé service in the church on Advent Sunday.


The music of Taizé emphasizes simple phrases, usually lines from Psalms, other pieces of Scripture, or from the liturgy, both Western and Eastern Orthodox, repeated many times and sometimes also sung by a choir in canon. 

The 2015 Nicholson Lecture



The fourth Nicholson Lecture was given on Saturday 8th August  by Graham Mottram, M.A., the Past Director of the Fleet Air Arm Museum at Yeovilton:



1915 - and naval aviation's first VCs

One hundred years ago, Lieutenant Rex Warneford and Squadron Commander Richard Bell-Davies became the first naval aviators to receive the Victoria Cross.


In June 1915, Warneford brought down a Zeppelin over Ostend – becoming the first pilot to achieve this. Later in the same year, Bell-Davies landed his single-seat fighter behind enemy lines in Bulgaria and rescued a colleague who had been shot down.


In this extremely well-illustrated and captivating lecture, Mr. Mottram began by outlining the origins of the Victoria Cross and the Royal Naval Air Service.  He then traced the service careers of two men from very different backgrounds and with sharply contrasting temperaments, and he went on to describe the dramatic actions that earned these men their place in history and the highest award for gallantry.


We were privileged to be joined for the occasion by members of the Bell-Davies family.


The important and on-going work of RNRMC was outlined by one of the Trustees,

Brigadier Jeremy Robbins MBE.


The Lecture raised in excess of £1,200 net of expenses, and the proceeds were shared equally by Maperton Church and The Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity.


This Lecture was generously sponsored by The King's Arms at Charlton Horethorne

and by Setfords, Solicitors at Wincanton


The Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales (no. 6047294) and is a registered charity (no.1117794) and Scotland (SC041898).  Registered office: Building 29, HMS EXCELLENT, Whale Island, Portsmouth PO2 8ER

The Great Awakening

13th June 2015



James Lawrence – baritone/trombonist, Peter Shave - percussionist, Matthew Redman - organist & keyboard, Clare Leavold –cornet/lyric soprano and David Bertie – trumpet – and a surprize addition on the day, Chicco Allatto, jazz pianist


This was a lively 60-minute recital before a packed church with a varied programme ranging from Baroque to 20th Century music, blues and jazz.  The evening opened with a 3-piece fanfare written by Clare for the occasion and went on to include some of the following:-


Bach Trumpets shall sound - Boyce - Trumpet Voluntary - VierneBerceuse - HollinsTrumpet MinuetMozart - Or sai che l'onore - Pietro Yon - Toccatina - HandelRuddier than the Cherry - Edison &Hendricks - Centrepiece - Nott- theme from Wallace & Gromit – St. James Infirmary and When the Saints go Marching In


Our objective was to mount a musical celebration to mark the completion of the repairs to and refurbishment of the church, and the restoration of its windows.  We were joined by a number of the craftsmen and women who have worked over the last nearly 4 years to bring our church back to life and by some of our keenest supporters as we attempted to pay tribute to their skills and gifts.


Below are a few pictures that show the fun that was had!




Chicco and Matthew rehearse their double-act on the keyboard, with David Bertie on trumpet




The opening fanfare, played by James Lawrence, Clare Leavold (composer) and David Bertie



A change of tempo: the theme from Wallace & Gromit, with James Lawrence on the left, Peter Shave on drums in the background, David Bertie and Matthew on keyboard



Ready for the encore!  (L to R) James Lawrence, Clare Leavold, David Bertie, Peter Shave, Chicco Allatto and Matthew Redman

Long may she reign: celebrating great occasions





On 9th May 2015, the 70th Anniversary of VE-day was celebrated with a quarter-peal.

The Friday Band


Her Majesty the Queen's record-breaking reign was marked on 11th September when a visiting band of bell-ringers - "The Friday Band" - concluded their session by striking in "Queens".


The Friday Band mustered 14, drawn from all over South Somerset: they have been ringing at a different church within a radius of some 20 miles from South Petherton on almost every Friday for 17 years.  In the course of their visit, the Band rang "touches" of "surprise", also some "doubles", "methods", "rounds" and "call changes".


The Union flag was flown on both occasions.

A Lull in Activity?

If you had thought that there had been fewer events at Maperton over the preceding eight months, this is only because access was restricted whilst urgent repairs were being carried out to the fabric of the church, and during the restoration and conservation of the stained-glass windows by Salisbury Cathedral Stained Glass


This work was completed in May 2015 and a full programme of events was planned for the year ahead.


These projects were only been enabled by the generosity of many grant-aiding bodies, including:-


St. Andrew's Conservation Trust; The Garfield Weston Foundation; The Somerset Churches Trust; The Veneziana Fund; All Churches Trust; The National Churches Trust; The Worshipful Company of Glaziers; The English Heritage Lottery Fund; Viridor Credits Environmental Company Ltd. and The Churchcare Trust.


We gratefully acknowledge their contribution, support and encouragement.


SADLY, when the scaffolding was erected, it became clear that additional, costly (£100,000 +) high-level stonework repairs will be required at the top of the 14th-century tower and around its parapet.  SO, ANOTHER CHALLENGE awaits us in 2015/2016.......

Christmas Day


On Christmas Day there was a short form of Matins at 11.00  to give hard-pressed housewives the chance to go to church without incinerating the family's Christmas lunch......


This marked the return to service of the organ, mummified since August whilst essential repairs to the fabric of the church were being carried out.


The choir sang an introit, and the anthem Sweet was the Song, composed by Gerald Hendrie: Simon Clarkson was the organist.

The 2014 Nicholson Lecture



The 2014 Nicholson Lecture raised over £1,200 for Maperton Church and over £1,200 for ABF - The Soldiers' Charity.  This is a huge testament to the generosity of those who have contributed, and we are immensely grateful.


There was disappointment at the enforced cancellation of the flypast by a Hawker Sea Fury from the Royal Navy's Historic Flight, based at Yeovilton, but both lectures by Patrick Mileham, on Saturday 2nd and on Sunday 3rd August, were well attended: the appeal for questions at the end of each session generated some perceptive and thought-provoking enquiries, and the ensuing debates might have continued long into the evening!


It is a tribute to the thoroughness of Patrick's preparation and to his talent as a speaker that a significant proportion of our guests indicated an interest in returning for the 2015 Nicholson Lecture. 


To all of you who helped to ensure that the Nicholson Lecture is associated with success and entertainment - thank you!


Christmas Day 2013

For the first time in many, many years Maperton's own choir led the congregation. Frances Eustace, Kate Wolfe and Maggie Nightingale - with Simon Clarkson playing the organ - delivered a most sympathetic rendition of Patrick Hadley's "I sing of a Maiden."

The Christmas Gallimaufry 2013

A mixture of secular and religious readings this time included extracts from James Herriott and from Call the Midwife as well as a reading of Eddi's Service by Rudyard Kipling: Simon Clarkson was our organist and The William Slogrove Singers provided five anthems, including William's own adaptation of "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel."

church events A soprano soloist from The William Slogrove Singers rehearses for the Gallimaufry

And in earlier events.....

August 2013: The Nicholson Lecture – “The Relief of Kandahar and the British Army's victory in Afghanistan, 1880” - in aid of SSAFA and Maperton Church.

When a broken British brigade was forced back into Kandahar in July 1880, it fell to “Bobs” - General Sir Frederick Roberts, V.C. - to lead a relief column of 10,000 elite troops over 320 miles of the savage territory beyond Kabul in just 21 days to relieve the city - all of this before the time of APCs, radios and helicopters.  

An illustrated lecture in which Dr. Rodney Atwood, late 2 RTR, described this very short, epic but brutal campaign that added hugely to the fame of General Roberts – later Field Marshal the Earl Roberts of Kandahar (and forever Kipling’s general, “Bobs”) - and more than that, he pointed out a few of the parallels and contrasts to be drawn between the Second Afghan War and the latest conflict – some of which were surprizing.

This was prefaced by a display and description of period arms by Major John Oldfield, a Trustee of the School of Small Arms’ weapons collection housed at Warminster.

April 2013: A violin and bass clarinet recital by The Watermark Duo (Adrian Adlam & Peter Cornish) in aid of Maperton church and Macmillan Cancer Support

Visiting us

We are a non-profit organisation and welcome any kind of support. If you would like to support us, please check out the Support Us page for more information.

For a map and directions for finding the church, go to the Contact Us page.


Disabled Access: This is an old building: it is not designed for wheeled access and compromises have to be made.  There is a two-inch step up into the porch and nave, but access beyond the nave is restricted.


Amenities: There are no publicly accessible lavatory or washing facilities at the church or in Maperton village.


Taxis: Destination Travel - 01963.34441 in Wincanton.


Banks, doctors and chemists: Wincanton (3 miles)


Railways:  Castle Cary (Great Western) -  6 miles - or Templecombe (South-west Trains), 4 miles


Opening hours

St. Peter & St. Paul's Church, 






The church is normally open during daylight hours in the winter and from 9.30 am until 6 pm in the summer.  If it is shut, a key can be obtained from J. Scott at Yarn Barton (details on the notice-board in the porch) or ring 07966.171723

Copyright in all photographs on this website belongs to O.J. de C. Scott, L.R.P.S.

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