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St Stephens Church, East Hardwick  Minutes of PCC Meeting 6th March 2023

Present: Fr Rod Walker, B Pollard (BP), A Dyer (A), S Hammond (JT), H Beaumont (HB), L Clark (LC), A Collins (AC) and T Nichol (TN).


Apologies:  J Trevorrow (JT)


(BP) opened the meeting with a prayer. Anne and Tom Dyer were thanked for offering their warm home and hospitality for the meeting.


The PCC minutes of 6/2/23 were proposed as a true record by (AD) and seconded by (HB} The PCC voted unanimously to accept them. 


Health & Safety 

Vestry steps: The steps have been rebuilt by a local builder, S Collins. Everyone agreed that they are a major improvement on the previous steps which had deteriorated to a dangerous state. (BP) asked the secretary to convey the PCC’s thanks to the builder for doing the work so quickly. 



The on-line foundation course must be completed by all PCC members every three years. 

Self-Declaration forms must be filled in by everyone holding a DBS certificate. (TN) will distribute the forms when they are available.

The Safeguarding Policy needed re-approval for the forthcoming year. (TN) proposed that the PCC approve the Policy, (HB) seconded the motion and the PCC voted unanimously to approve it.

St Stephens has now progressed to level three on the Safeguarding Dashboard. 

The Safeguarding Action Plan needed approval by the PCC. (TN) proposed the action plan be approved, (AD) seconded the motion, the PCC voted unanimously to approve.





  1. CURRENT ACCOUNT stands at £6,165.88


Regular payments to Dust Devils, Church insurance and Leeds DBF(Parish Share) were paid. 

Some expenses for Church Books & the accountancy fee for end of year audit of the church accounts for 2022 were paid.

  1. INCOME 

This continues to be supported by regular giving including Parish Giving Scheme & PGS tax refunds. E. Hardwick Dole money £42 - cheque banked. Some allotment money received. Votive candle money banked. Money has gone into the current account for parish magazines, but this will eventually be transferred to St Michael’s. 

  1. FABRIC & FACILITIES (including roof) FUND 

Now at £44,324.40 thanks to a private donation and a donation from the curry evening.

  1. CCLA Deposit Account stands at £43,841.46, 

  2. PETTY CASH remains at £8.54.

  3. Total Reserves -all accounts £88,165.46




Smart water: (TN) has applied smart water to various metal objects inside and outside church and posted notices to this effect.

Pew carpet runners, (JT) has now completed carpeting all the pew seating areas, everyone agreed it makes a considerable difference to peoples’ comfort. The PCC thank John for cutting, fitting and cleaning all the carpeting he and others donated. 

Beech Tree in the drive: Andy Stenton quoted £250 for removing the tree but could not grind out the stump. The PCC decided to leave the tree in place and revisit the matter in one years’ time.

Notice board: As the PCC is prioritising funding for building works to reduce heat loss in the church, it is unable to fund the churchyard noticeboard required to provide information to the village community and general public on faith, services, events, key contact details, etc.  (BP) proposed applying to the Bishops Development Fund for help with purchasing the notice board, as having somewhere to display information is key to the ‘church growth’ and ‘connecting to the community’ elements of the project. (AD) seconded the motion and the PCC agreed unanimously.  (AD) proposed that the PCC contribute £200, with a further £150 being contributed from the Bring and Buy Sale.  (HB) seconded the motion and it was agreed unanimously.  Fr Rod suggested fitting a second notice board to a wall on Darrington Road where it would be seen by residents and also the many walkers who pass through. This would give us ways of sharing information at both ends of the village.  The PCC agreed this was a good idea for the future. (AD) offered to have the notice board fixed to their garage wall where it would face onto Darrington Road. 

Planning application in the paddock adjacent to the church. Status:  awaiting decision. 

Secondary glazing: (JT) found out that St Giles church secondary glazing was fitted by H&R Developments, Dunfrieshire. (TN) contacted the company, sent photo’s and measurements of all the windows and was promised a budget price for carrying out the work.

Electrical inspection: 5 year inspection due in May

Lightening conductor: 5 year inspection Due in March



Wedding blessing fees: It was proposed by (AD), seconded by (HB) to accept the fees shown below, the PCC voted unanimously to accept them.

Basic Blessing                                                    £150

Verger (cost of setting up for service)                 £25

Tolling of bells                                                  £20

Playing recorded music                                     £70

Heating in cold months                                     £40  

Priest’s fee                                                       £75

Organist fees are set by the individual organists and are usually between £100 and £150 plus additional licence fees if the service is being recorded. 

Easter services: the worship planning team have compiled plans for Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

Eucharistic minister. Fr Rod has obtained verbal permission for (JT) to offer the chalice in the dioceses of East Hardwick and Carleton. A written licence will follow shortly.

Baptism services are arranged. Anointing, St Stephen’s do not have any chrism, Fr Rod will ask Carleton if they have some. St Stephen’s need to obtain a set of Stocks (3 inter screwing silver pots) for administering the oil plus a vessel for transporting the oil from Wakefield Cathedral. Chausables:  Carleton have a set, but St Stephen’s do not. Fr Rod will send a link to (BP) with appropriate ones for the PCC to consider. (BP) to give Fr Rod a key to the church.



Pre-loved sale: lots of items have been donated, everything now organized.

Songs of Praise: (BP) has put a notice on the village and church Facebook sites.

Kings Coronation: (AD) is having a meeting with the village council and village hall group to discuss possible events. St Stephens are holding a picnic in the churchyard on Monday 12 – 4pm, handbells and choir to perform. Childrens games to be provided.

Bring and Buy sale 17th June in the Dyers’s garden.

Strawberry tea: Fr Rod will try and meet up with Paula and Nigel Griffith to introduce himself. If the strawberry tea is mentioned by them in conversation, then Fr Rod will enquire as to the possibility of them hosting this event again in the future. 

Party on the pitch: July 30th at Hundhill cricket club. Sue Crowther is organizing this event. There will be a dance band, Mellows, a pie and pea supper, Raffle and bar. Tickets £20 each Profit from ticket sales for the church and proceeds from the raffle to Cancer research.



Tony Hames, the H&S officer has sent a letter of resignation, therefore a new H&S officer will need to be appointed at the APCM. (BP) to announce in church notices. 

Election of PCC members: Peter Hargreaves and Anne Crawford have both been nominated to fill the two spare places.

Churchwarden nominations have been received for B Pollard and A Dyer.

Electoral roll review is in progress


Deanery Synod report

BP & JRT attended a joint meeting of the Pontefract & Wakefield synods on 21 Feb and were treated to a presentation from the Bishop, Archdeacon & the Church Revitalisation Officer, Jude Smith. She outlined ideas from the Barnabas Project for parishes as they emerge from the pandemic. The aim is to build confident Christians and growing churches and communities.  Question is, 'What will help churches to grow in a new/different world?'   She suggested being confident in our mission & witness and confident in the future. She also suggested ways in which the diocese could provide support for buildings, governance, stewardship, leadership and mission.   Much of the presentation was about encouraging churches to work together, sharing resources and ideas and reducing costs.  Many of these are already emerging as we build after the interregnum and work with Carleton and eventually with Pontefract.  



Magazine correspondent for March John Pollard

Fr Rod volunteered to write a short piece for the magazine each month.


Cards and Flowers.

(HB) Four cards were sent last month and funds now stand at £26.72



The meeting closed with prayers.


Next PCC meeting will follow the APCM on Sunday 26 March 2023 in church after the 10am eucharist.

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