Members: to apply for any of these visits login into the members section.

Visit to Melbourne, Derby and Kedleston – Tuesday 20th and Wednesday 21st August 2019

Tuesday 20 August 2019

A One-or-Two Day Visit  – Tuesday 20th August and Wednesday 21st August 2019

The Visit to Derbyshire will take place over two days but I am happy for members to sign up for a single day only, or both. (For interest, the train from London to Derby takes around one and a half hours.)


Tuesday 20th August:    We will spend the day in the very attractive village of Nelbourne, about 10 miles south of Derby.  We will visit Melbourne Hall and the magnificent parish church of St. Michael with St. Mary.  Melbourne was a royal manor and it is thought that Henry I instructed the church to be built early in the 12th century.  In 1133 the King gave the church and manor to his newly appointed Bishop of Carlisle, in order to reaffirm the importance of the Northwest of the contry to the Kingdom of England.  The Hall is now the home of Lord and Lady Ralph Kerr and is surrounded by some spectacular gardens.


Wednesday 21st August:  We will begin our day at the Museum and Art Gallery in Derby.  Max Craven, who some of you may remember, guided us when we visited Debo Devonshire in Edensor, and he will walk us around Derby taking in the Cathedral, the Bridge Chapel and the elegant Pickford’s House in Friar Gate.  I am ashamed to say that I had never been into the centre of Derby before my recce.  Perhaps the industrial revolution and railways have tarnished its appeal but I can assure you that it is a city full of intereste and history, and I left feeling delighted that I would wsoon return with Rectory Society members.


To end the day we will drive a short way out of the city to Kedleston where we will visit the now redundant church, with its Curzon family tombs, which lies adjacent to the Hall before driving through the park to visit, and have tea at, the Old Rectory, home of our member, Helene, Viscountess Scarsdale.


The cost of this two-day visit will be £130 per person.  The Tuesday 20th only will be £50 and the Wednesday 21st will be £80.  Please make clear on the Application Form which days you wish to sign up for.

If you are interested in joining this Visit, you must find and click on the “Booking Form to Download” in the Members Area.  (For reaching this, click on the Members Tab at the top of the Home Page, select Log In, (if you have forgotten your login password, do get in touch with and select Future Visits).   Then click the Download Booking Form.

Please fill it in and post it, or email it, to Amanda Ponsonby at:

Postal address:  Sarsden Glebe, Oxfordshire, OX7 6PH



Visit to Chelsea in London on Thursday 3rd October 2019

Thursday 3 October 2019

We will begin the day at Chelsea Old Church. There has probably been a church here ever since Christianity came to England but most people will know it as Thomas More’s church. It is truly a history book built of stone. Every monument, memorial, piece of glass, book or tapestry tells part of the story of this first parish church in the village of Chelsea. The Verger will talk to us in the church and then I have asked Meg Ryder to take us on a guided walk through Chelsea Old Town. Anyone who came on the Tower of London day will know how knowledgeable she is. Our route will take us through the attractive back streets of Chelsea and we will end up at St. Luke’s Church in Sydney Street in time for lunch in the excellent church café. Following this, the Revd Brian Leathard, Rector of St. Luke’s, will meet us and give a talk about the church from its beginnings in 1818 when it was built as the principal parish church in Chelsea.

After lunch there will be another fifteen minute walk to Holy Trinity in Sloane Street. We will have a full guided tour of the church and a short talk about its history followed by refreshments. I am hoping it will also be possible to end the day with a short service.

To apply to this visit, please see the Members Tab at the top and select Future Visits. There you will find an application form to download, print out and send by post or by email to Amanda Ponsonby.

Talk on the British Pilgrimage Trust on Tuesday 8th October 2019

Tuesday 8 October 2019

THE PILGRIMAGE REVIVAL – A Talk introducing the British Pilgrimage Trust will be held at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Cadogan Street, London SW3 2QR, at 6.30pm on Tuesday 8th October 2019.

The British Pilgrimage Trust has rediscovered many of Britain’s great pilgrimage routes. William Parsons, Co-Founder of the BPT will be outlining his vision for the revival of pilgrimages in our modern times. The Rectory Society is very excited to be planning a guided walk, in 2020, along a small section of a recently rediscovered route: the 250 mile pilgrimage from Southampton to Canterbury. Come along to find out more. The Talk will take place in St Mary’s Catholic Church, Cadogan Street, in Chelsea, by kind permission of Father Shaun Middleton. It will begin at 6.30pm and last for about an hour, with a drink afterwards. There is no charge to members for this event but if you would like to attend it would be useful if you could complete the application form which is in the Members area so that we have an idea of numbers. Just click on Members Tab above, put in your password, (if forgotten please email, select Future Visits and click on the application form link provided.