Finding St Mary’s Church in Clifton Village feels like a bit of a mission – you enter the Village, then have to keep on going, nearly to the river. When you arrive though, your trek is rewarded, as nestled in a corner, tucked out of the way, is a most beautiful church in the most peaceful of settings.
A church has stood on this site from at least 1086 when it gets a mention in the Doomsday Book, and the existing building that you see today dates back to approx. 1200 AD, making it the oldest building in Clifton. As you walk through the church gates and up the path, you could almost be walking back in time!
Although St Mary’s is steeped in history, the collection of people who make up the church have constantly grown, changed and adapted over the years. Today, Sunday worship is at 11am every Sunday and it is often a mix of creativity and children having fun, alongside traditional hymns on the organ, readings and prayers; people of all ages, 0-90, come to worship together and you would be very welcome to come and see what it’s like.
As well as regular Sunday worship, St Mary’s has been the site for many special celebration services for local people over centuries and even now. Did you know that anyone who lives anywhere in Clifton is able to have a christening, wedding or funeral at either St Mary’s in the Village or Holy Trinity with St Francis on the estate?
You don’t have to be a regular church goer or live in a certain part of Clifton – all are welcome at either church.
On Monday 29th August (Bank Holiday Monday) between 2.00pm-4.00pm, there is a special chance to explore the St Mary’s church yard and building at a FREE (except the ice cream van!) “Bank Holiday Fun” Event. There will be homemade cakes and drinks, history information and photos, crafts and trails for children and a whole lot more for all ages to enjoy. Do come and see this special place for yourself.
For further info on the Church of England churches in Clifton, please do check out the website http://cliftonchurchofengland.weebly.com/ or “like” the Facebook page “Church of England, Clifton, Nottingham”.
There will be lots more happening in the autumn to join in with!
Written by Rev Lydia Cartwright Team Rector – Clifton Parish