Ludlow Chapel Supports Sleep Out

sleep-outThe Revd. Dr. Neil Richardson and Ludlow Chapel minister Revd. Kim Stilwell took part in a Sleep Out supporting a fight against funding cuts that may result in the closure of The Foyer, a crucial housing initiative for vulnerable young people, based in Ludlow. Ludlow Chapel facilities were opened overnight for those taking part and the Wesley’s  Café team provided them with a cooked breakfast.

The Sleep Out, which saw twenty-five people sleep at the Buttercross and along the pavement of High Street, was organised by Peter Norman, who was on the board of South Shropshire Housing Association which, over fifteen years ago, bought the property and set up The Foyer. He said, ”To my mind it does a very good service in terms of getting young people (16–25 year olds ), who are at a fairly critical point in their lives and perhaps run into difficulties, into independent living through training, mentoring, advice and shelter essentially.”

Sleep Out organiser, Peter Norman

Sleep Out organiser, Peter Norman

The Foyer is currently under threat from both government changes in Housing Benefit regulations and cuts to Shropshire County Council support. According to Peter Norman, The Foyer, which currently provides accommodation and support for fifteen young people, faces a potential loss of approximately £100 000 from each of those sources. “This is essential to cover the extra staffing costs, the extra security costs, the extra training etc, over and above the accommodation that they get.”

Revd.  Stilwell who got involved through Hands Together Ludlow commented on the local concern. “The danger that if it is closed and those people will be turned out on the streets with nowhere to go is a very worrying situation.” Earlier in the day, a stall set up at Ludlow market raised  awareness of the issue with a petition which gathered 640 signatures. “If we get 1000 signatures on the petition to the County Council they have to debate the issue in full Council and they are due to make decisions on their budget for next year during September.” Peter Norman informed.

sleep-1One of the directors at Shropshire Housing Group Ann Sutcliffe who slept out under the Buttercross arches praised the effort. “I want to say just how amazing it is to be here with all these people who live in Ludlow who care about it and I don’t think there’s many towns where the local people care so much about their young people that they are prepared to sleep out like this. It’s fantastic. It’s really moving.”

Posted in Southern Area

5 Year Circuit Plan!

Following a Circuit Meeting on Thursday 21st June, the Shropshire & Marches Circuit has adopted a 5 year plan.

To view the plan please click here! (PDF file, 575Kb)

We would like to express our thanks to the Steering Group for all their work in preparing the 5 year plan.

Posted in Central Area, Northern Area, Shropshire & Marches Methodist Circuit, Southern Area

Family Story Cafe – Tenbury Wells

Once a month on the 3rd Sunday 3-5pm the Methodist Hall at Tenbury becomes the Family Story Cafe. It does what it says on the tin – a space for families, a story time, all with coffee and cake.

It is a joint project by the Methodists and St Mary’s, the parish church using skills from both congregations .

You can relax with a drink and chat, or get involved in the activities provided – no age limits on the creative tables! The story time presents Bible stories in an interactive way using Godly Play material which we loan from the Diocesan Resource Centre in Ludlow.

The vision was for the churches to support families in the area offering a low cost but stimulating environment for adults and children alike. We don’t charge but invite donations to cover expenses, which are fairly low with lovely homemade cakes donated by church members.

Although it is still very new (starting July 2011) we are getting to know new families. If anyone wants to find out more contact Rev Helen Roberts helen_goolwa@ hotmail.com or via the circuit office.

Posted in Shropshire & Marches Methodist Circuit, Southern Area

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